The Carolina Hurricanes moved into the Eastern Conference play-off picture on Monday after netminder Cam Ward's fifth shut-out of the season led them to a 3-0 win over the New York Rangers. The Hurricanes began the day in ninth place, but their fourth consecutive victory allowed them to pass Florida, the Rangers and Pittsburgh and go level with fifth-place Montreal on 77 points.
Ward, in winning for the eighth time in 10 games, stopped 28 shots by the Rangers, who had a three-game winning streak ended by this loss. Carolina opened the scoring on Joe Corvo's second-period tally, before Rod Brind'Amour and Tuomo Ruutu's added further goals. Ray Whitney assisted on the first two scores and Erik Cole, who was reacquired from Edmonton on Wednesday, helped set up Ruutu. The Rangers back-up netminder Stephen Valiquette had 33 saves in the loss.
In the night's other games in the NHL, Daniel Alfredsson and Dany Heatley scored second period goals as Ottawa got the better of Toronto 2-1 in a closely fought game. Brian Elliott made 25 saves in his third consecutive start for Ottawa, which have all ended in victories. In Los Angeles, Jarret Stoll scored twice during power plays and Teddy Purcell had two assists as the Kings beat the Vancouver Canucks 3-2.
* With agencies