Jamie Benn scored the winning goal 2:44 into overtime Monday as the Dallas Stars defeated visiting Carolina 4-3, with the Hurricanes still able to secure a playoff spot despite the loss.
Benn, who added three assists, scored his 11th goal of the season as the Stars continued their recent torrid pace.
Carolina, which leads the Central Division, will be in the playoffs for the third consecutive year in a feat achieved for the first time since the franchise relocated from Hartford, Conn., to North Carolina in advance of the 1997-98 season.
The Hurricanes (31-10-7, 69 points) increased their points streak to seven games. For the second consecutive game, they were in position to clinch a playoff berth with a victory, but on Monday, a point for reaching overtime did the trick.
Jani Hakanpaa pulled the Hurricanes even at 3-3 with 4:14 remaining in regulation. Carolina never led in the game.
The Stars (21-15-12, 54 points) have won six of their last seven games and have earned a point in eight of their last nine.
Joe Pavelski, Jason Dickinson and Denis Gurianov scored in regulation for Dallas. Jason Robertson provided his second assist on the game-winning goal.
Max McCormick, appearing in just his third game of the season, scored a goal for the Hurricanes as did Jaccob Slavin. Morgan Geekie had two assists for Carolina.
Jake Oettinger made 29 saves for the Stars, who play their home finale in a rematch with Carolina on Tuesday night. They have a seven-game home points streak.
Carolina goalie James Reimer stopped 27 shots.
Pavelski notched his fourth goal in seven games againsty Carolina this season on an early power play. Dickinson padded the lead at 16:59 of the first period.
The Hurricanes scored two goals in a span of three minutes in the second period to tie the game 2-2 after trailing since the game was 1:19 old. McCormick’s tally was his first goal of the season.
But just 36 seconds after he scored, Gurianov sent the Stars back ahead. It was his fifth goal in the last seven games.
Oettinger was playing for the sixth time in eight games. He was in the net for two games earlier this month at Carolina, splitting those decisions.
–Field Level Media