Saturday's NHL: McDavid reaches 100 points as Penguins, Leafs clinch divisions
Connor McDavid had a goal and three assists to reach 100 points this season, leading the Edmonton Oilers to a 4-3 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday night.
McDavid reached the milestone before the end of the second period of his 53rd game. The 24-year-old became the ninth NHL player — and first in his lifetime — to get to 100 points in 53 games or fewer.
McDavid leads the league in scoring with 32 goals and 68 assists. Edmonton has three games remaining in the regular season.
Leon Draisaitl scored twice and Jesse Puljujarvi also scored for the Oilers. Defenseman Darnell Nurse had a pair of assists and goalie Mike Smith made 22 saves.
The Oilers will finish second in the North Division behind the Toronto Maple Leafs, who clinched the top spot earlier Saturday by beating Montreal 3-2.
With his fourth 100-point season, McDavid became the third active player with at least four before age 25. The others are Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals.
J.T. Miller, Travis Boyd and Tyler Graovac scored for the Canucks, who have lost eight of 10. Vancouver lost three of four to Edmonton in a four-game set over six days, including the first two at home.
Thatcher Demko had 30 saves for the Canucks.
The Oilers are 6-3 this season against the Canucks. The teams play one more time next Saturday in Edmonton's regular-season finale.
McDavid assisted on both of Draisaitl’s power-play goals in the second period. Draisaitl’s second with 40 seconds remaining in the period made it 4-3.
McDavid and James Neal set up Draisaitl’s first at 12:27 of the second to put the Oilers ahead 3-2, but Graovac tied it less than two minutes later.
Trailing by two goals midway through the second, the visitors scored twice in a span of 2:28 to draw even.
Boyd collected his first as a Canuck at 11:40, banging a loose puck by Smith. Miller halved Vancouver’s deficit on a breakaway at 9:12 of the second period.
The Canucks forward intercepted a Nurse pass and wrapped a backhand around Smith’s outstretched right pad.
Puljujarvi scored at 6:54 from the slot off the rush with McDavid, who snared a loose puck in the neutral zone and raced it into Vancouver’s end.
Oilers coach Dave Tippett successfully challenged an apparent goal by Quinn Hughes for offside early in the second period.
McDavid got his 97th point just 45 seconds after the opening faceoff. His wrist shot deflected off the leg of Vancouver defenseman Alex Edler and by Demko.
Leafs win first division title in 21 years
Mitch Marner scored his 20th goal of the season and the Toronto Maple Leafs wrapped up the North Division title, beating the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 on Saturday night.
“It’s a good feeling,” Marner said. “We’ve got to make sure we just keep going with the pedal down.”
William Nylander and Pierre Engvall also scored, and Jack Campbell made 21 saves. Toronto was 7-2-1 against the Canadiens in the season series as the Original Six rivals look poised to meet in the playoffs for the first time since 1979.
“We’ve come a long way,” said Nylander, one of the few remaining players from the Leafs’ last-place finish in 2015-16. “It’s been a long process and a lot of hard work. This is just a stepping stone for where we want to go.”
Toronto won its first division crown since 2000.
“It’s unbelievable,” said Toronto winger Wayne Simmonds, who signed with his hometown team in free agency. “For me and for the team, this is a great accomplishment. It’s only getting started.”
Nick Suzuki and Brett Kulak scored for Montreal, and Jake Allen stopped 23 shots.
Toronto beat Montreal 5-2 on Thursday night to open the two-game set.
Penguins clinch in East
Pittsburgh won its ninth division title in franchise history and first since the 2013-14 season.
The Penguins clinched their 15th consecutive playoff berth last week, the longest active streak in major North American professional sports.
“This is when the fun starts,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. “We’ve done the heavy lifting to earn the privilege to compete for the Stanley Cup. I look forward to the next part of it with this group of players.”