Ovechkin powers Capitals to 4-3 shootout win over Bruins
WASHINGTON (AP) — Alex Ovechkin got his 24th goal of the season and then scored in the shootout to help the Washington Capitals beat the Boston Bruins 4-3 on Thursday night.
Lars Eller and Brett Connolly also scored for the Capitals, who snapped a three-game losing streak and won their 12th consecutive game over the Bruins. Washington also ended a scoring drought that had lasted almost nine full periods.
David Backes scored twice for the second time this season, but Boston lost for the third time in its last 12 games. Noel Acciari also scored for the Bruins.
Boston built a 2-0 lead before Washington registered its first shot of the game, and also led 3-2 in the third.
Washington’s Braden Holtby and Boston’s Anton Khudobin each made 31 saves.
Connolly tied it at 3 with 8:38 left in the third when he appeared to attempt a centering feed toward Tom Wilson at the crease. Instead, the puck caromed off a Boston player and over the line before Khudobin could stop it.
Ovechkin had the only successful shootout try, finishing into the top right corner.
Washington gave up two goals during a 49-second stretch early in the first period, and then pulled even with two goals 96 seconds apart in the second.
First, Eller reached a loose puck between the circles and rifled a shot past Khudobin, ending a team drought that lasted more than 178 minutes. Then, after Boston’s Torey Krug picked up a slashing penalty, Ovechkin took John Carlson’s feed at the left face-off circle and smashed it into the top right corner.
Backes’ second goal of the night put Boston ahead 3-2 and came just moments after Washington killed off its fifth penalty of the game. T.J. Oshie gave the puck away in his own end, and Danton Heinen found Backes open for a shot that struck Holtby’s glove on its way in.
NOTES: Washington assigned C Nathan Walker, the first Australian national to play in the NHL, to the minors. The 23-year-old has played in nine games for Washington, scoring once. ... Caps C Chandler Stephenson (illness) missed his second straight game but is expected to return soon. ... Acciari played one night after taking an illegal check to the head by Ottawa D Fredrik Claesson. The NHL suspended Claesson two games.
Bruins: Visits Ottawa on Saturday night.