NEWARK, NJ - APRIL 22: Head Coach of the New Jersey Devils Jacques Lemaire looks on from the bench against the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Prudential Center at on April 22, 2010 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

NHL Scores And More: Jacques Lemaire Earns 600th Career Win On Night Of Wild Finishes

Jordan Staal, Ilya Kovalchuk and Tyler Myers all scored in the final minute of overtime to give their teams, the Penguins, Devils and Sabres, victories on Thursday night.

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Kings Vs. Penguins: Jordan Staal Fills The Void, Scores OT Winner For Pittsburgh

With Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby, Mark Letestu and now Dustin Jeffrey out of the lineup at the center position for the Pittsburgh Penguins, the load has fallen completely on one guy. His name is Jordan Staal.

Staal shined for at least one night on Thursday as his overtime goal propelled the Penguins to a 2-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings. The whole play was created from nothing by No. 11, too. With about 20 seconds left on the clock, Staal picked the puck off the stick of Jack Johnson at center ice, skated into the Kings end all alone and beat Jonathan Quick with a quick wrister to the blocker side.

It was only Staal's fourth goal of what's been an injury-shortened season for the young star who's so often buried under the headlines featuring his teammates, Malkin and Crosby. On this night, he gave the Penguins -- basically an AHL team these days -- a vital win against an opponent that probably should have beaten them.

Jarret Stoll scored in the first period for the Kings, a goal that tied the score at 1-1 after Brett Sterling got the Penguins on the board early. Yes, Brett Sterling. Who's that, you wonder? Don't worry about it -- he'll probably be injured in three days. 

Los Angeles continues a brutal East Coast road trip that includes stops in Washington and Philadelphia over the weekend. You can read more on this one at Pensburgh and Jewels From The Crown.


Devils Vs. Maple Leafs: Ilya Kovalchuk's Overtime Beauty Gives Jacques Lemaire 600 Career Wins

The Devils are in the hunt for the postseason. Officially. Don't believe me? Just take a look at the standings after their latest win -- a 2-1 triumph over the Toronto Maple Leafs last night. 

Ilya Kovalchuk scored the game-winner in overtime to propel the Devils on this night, and much like Jordan Staal in Pittsburgh, he did it all on his own in the final minute of the extra session. 

New Jersey, now winners of 11 of their last 14 games, sits all the way down in 13th place in the Eastern Conference, but they also sit just 13 points out of the playoffs. If you assume they'll need about 92 points to make the postseason, they'll need about 50 points in the remaining 30 games. Tough, but doable. 

None of the teams ahead of them in the Race for Eighth are particularly scary, and if the Devils keep up this impossible pace, they'll be the scary ones. If only they fired Doug MacLean sooner (an ironic statement on the night Jacques Lemaire, his replacement, earned his 600th career victory.)


Sabres Vs. Panthers: Tyler Myers' Wins It For Buffalo With Five Seconds Left In Overtime

If nothing else, Thursday night in the NHL was a night of fantastic last-minute finishes.

Jordan Staal gave Pittsburgh an OT win in the final minute against Los Angeles, Ilya Kovalchuk did the same for the Devils in Toronto and down in South Florida, Tyler Myers became the first Sabres defenseman to score two OT goals in a season as he beat the Panthers with just five seconds on the clock.

Mike Weber and Thomas Vanek also scored for Buffalo, while Steve Bernier's power play goal and Marty Reasoner's game-tying goal in the third period were the reason overtime happened. Ryan Miller and Tomas Vokoun each made 24 saves in goal. 

Elsewhere in the NHL...

NY Islanders 4, Montreal 3 (SO): Mikko Koskinen made 37 saves (!) and stopped four of four attempts in the shootout as the Islanders squeaked by the Canadiens at Bell Centre. It was the first NHL win for Koskinen, who was able to hold of a Habs team that was itching for a victory after getting embarrassed in Boston on Wednesday night. 

Michael Grabner scored twice for the Isles to go along with John Taveres' first period goal. Max Pacioretty, Benoit Pouliot and Tomas Plekanec scored for Montreal.

Philadelphia 2, Carolina 1: The Flyers won their third straight game behind a strong, 31 save performance from Brian Boucher and goals from Jeff Carter and Danny Briere. The Hurricanes, firmly on the bubble in the Eastern Conference playoff race, tried their best with a third period surge and a goal from Tuomo Ruutu, but at the end of the night, it just wasn't enough to beat the East's best team to date. 

The Flyers remain the only team in the NHL without a shutout this season. 

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