Bruins blank Wild behind Halak's 26 saves
ST. PAUL -- Joakim Nordstrom, David Pastrnak and Zach Senyshyn each scored and Jaroslav Halak was perfect in net as the visiting Boston Bruins skated to a 3-0 victory over the Minnesota Wild on Thursday night, April 4.
Halak made 26 saves for his fifth shutout of the season for the Bruins (49-23-9, 107 points), who went into the game having clinched second place in the Atlantic Division and will face the Toronto Maple Leafs in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Boston will close out the regular season at home against the regular season-champion Tampa Bay Lighting.
Minnesota (37-35-9, 83 points) missed the playoffs for the first time since 2012, and will face the Dallas Stars on Saturday to close out the disappointing campaign.
With neither side having much to play for, the intensity was lacking, and so were goals for the longest time.
Nordstrom's tally 8:21 into the second period held up for the winner. After a point shot glanced off the side of the net and then the end boards, Noel Acciari had the presence of mind to chip the loose puck to the slot. Nordstrom was untouched as he pounced on the golden opportunity for his seventh goal of the season.
It appeared that would be all the offense, but Pastrnak doubled the lead with 2:45 remaining in the contest. Jake DeBrusk drove to the net but lost the handle only to see the puck squirt to Pastrnak to bury for his 38th of the season.
Then, Senyshyn made his NHL debut even more memorable by scoring into an empty net 36 seconds later. Senyshyn, a 2015 first-round draft choice, was summoned from the minors the day before.
The Wild, who finished with a 16-18-7 home record, were shut out for the seventh at home and the 10th time overall. Minnesota was blanked three time in the last five games as its playoff hopes disappeared.
The Bruins rested captain Zdeno Chara, David Krejci and Brad Marchand, while Minnesota's Zach Parise didn't play due to injury.