Needing only one point for the playoffs in the season finale, the Ottawa Senators wrapped up their sizzling second-half rally with a 3-1 win over the host Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday, and will open the Eastern Conference playoffs this week at Montreal.
"Here we are at the end of the year, we made an unbelievable run for the past 30 games," Senators captain Erik Karlsson said.
Headed toward a spot in the NHL draft lottery two months ago, the Senators finished 23-4-4 over their final 31 games, helped by — just as the Wild was — the acquisition of a goaltender. Undrafted rookie Andrew Hammond, nicknamed the "Hamburglar," went from a borderline AHL goalie to posting a 20-1-2 record since he was recalled in the second half. Hammond, 27, entered Saturday, with a 1.76 goals-against average since his recall from the AHL.
He made 27 saves, and the Senators mobbed him at the net when the final horn sounded Saturday.
"I don't know if it's completely sunk in yet," Hammond said, "but tomorrow when we wake up, we'll be in the playoffs. That's a really special feeling for this group from where we were."
Just in time
Pittsburgh, winless in five previous games, also got into the playoffs as a wild card on the final day with a 2-0 victory over the Buffalo Sabres, eliminating Boston in the process. Brandon Sutter scored twice and Marc-Andre Fleury made 28 saves.
West Coast thud
The defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings wrapped up their season with a 4-1 home victory over the San Jose Sharks. The Kings are the first champs to miss the ensuing postseason since Carolina in 2007. Both California rivals are missing the playoffs in the same season for the first time since 2003.
•The Winnipeg Jets' 5-1 home victory over the Flames gave them a franchise-record 99 points, two more than the Atlanta Thrashers had in 2006-07. … The Rangers closed the season with the Presidents' Trophy and team records for victories (53) and points (113).
•The Devils' Jaromir Jagr moved into sole possession of sixth place all-time with 1,080 assists. He also tied Wayne Gretzky for 14th place with 204 power-play goals.
•Ex-Gopher Kyle Okposo scored a goal for the Islanders in a 5-4 shootout loss to Columbus in New York's final regular-season game at Nassau Coliseum.
• Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr said he is retiring after a 15-year NHL career.