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BC-HKN--Wild-Sharks, HKN

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Sports,NHL

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Marty Havlat scored twice against his former team and the San Jose Sharks closed in on a ninth straight playoff berth, beating the Minnesota Wild 6-1 on Thursday night for their most lopsided win of the season.

Logan Couture added two goals and two assists, and Raffi Torres and Joe Pavelski also scored for the Sharks, who have won three straight games to remain tied for fourth place with Los Angeles in the race for home-ice advantage in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs. Antti Niemi made 26 saves in his 22nd straight start.

Pierre-Marc Bouchard scored the lone goal for the Wild, who dropped behind St. Louis into seventh place in the conference. Minnesota has a four-point lead over ninth-place Dallas and Detroit in the battle for the final playoff spot in the conference but has one fewer game remaining.

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