NHL: Sabres eye play-off spot

A review of Friday's action in National Hockey League

Last Updated: 26/03/12 8:06am

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Tyler Ennis: Was on the scoresheet for the Sabres

Tyler Ennis: Was on the scoresheet for the Sabres

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The in-form Buffalos Sabres moved closer to a play-off place by toppling the New York Rangers 4-1 as Drew Stafford scored twice.

Tyler Ennis and Travis Turnbull were also on the scoresheet for the Sabres who now stand ninth, level on points with eighth-placed Washington, in the Eastern Conference.

Brian Boyle scored the only goal of the night for New York, who continue to lead the way in the East.

Tim Stapleton's overtime strike earned the Winnipeg Jets a 4-3 victory against Washington, who had two goals from Alex Ovechkin.

RJ Umberger's hat-trick led the lowly Columbus Blue Jackets to a 5-1 success over the Carolina Hurricanes, whose play-off prospects now look bleak, while Erik Cole also scored three for the Montreal Canadiens as the team at the foot of the East surprisingly won by the same margin against the seventh-placed Ottawa Senators.

Cole's treble was the more remarkable for the fact his goals all came inside the opening six minutes.

Shoot-out

The Toronto Maple Leafs threw away a 3-1 lead and the New Jersey Devils forced a shoot-out in Newark.

But the Canadian visitors prevailed as five out of six players scored in the shoot-out, with New Jersey's Patrik Elias the man to miss.

Another shoot-out was required to separate the Edmonton Oilers and Florida Panthers.

Edmonton gained a 2-1 win when Ryan Nugent-Hopkins became the first player to score in the shoot-out, after seven failures.

Ryan Jones had put Edmonton ahead early in the second period, but Jason Garrison soon levelled.

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