Washington Capitals

Wins by Metro rivals adds to Flyers' bad day

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USA Today Images

Wins by Metro rivals adds to Flyers' bad day

NEW YORK -- T.J. Oshie scored twice, Dmitry Orlov and Nicklas Backstrom each had a goal and two assists, and the first-place Washington Capitals beat the New York Islanders 7-3 Thursday night.

Andrei Burakovsky added a goal and an assist, and Lars Eller and John Carlson also scored to help Washington improve to 10-4-3 in its last 17 games against the Islanders. Evgeny Kuznetsov had three assists and Philipp Grubauer finished with 35 saves for his 11th win of the season.

Brock Nelson, Andrew Ladd and Ryan Pulock scored for the Islanders, who lost for the ninth time in 10 games. Christopher Gibson started and gave up five goals on 12 shots before he was pulled midway through the second period. Jaroslav Halak came on and finished with eight saves.

Orlov gave the Capitals a 3-2 lead with 2:43 left in the first as he beat Gibson for his ninth of the season.

Burakovsky extended Washington's lead at 3:12 of the second, and Backstrom made it 5-2 with his 18th with 9:38 remaining in the middle period, ending Gibson's night (see full recap).

Hornqvist, Penguins top Canadiens
MONTREAL -- Patric Hornqvist's second goal of the game gave Pittsburgh the lead in the third period, and the Penguins went on to beat the Montreal Canadiens 5-3 Thursday night.

Phil Kessel, Evgeni Malkin and Bryan Rust also scored for Pittsburgh, which remain tied with Washington in points atop the Metropolitan Division. The Capitals, however, currently hold the tiebreaker with two games in hand.

Tristan Jarry made 17 saves for his 14th win of the season while starter Matt Murray remains sidelined with a concussion.

Artturi Lehkonen, Paul Byron and Nicolas Deslauriers scored for Montreal, and Antti Niemi stopped 34 shots in his first regulation loss since Feb. 14.

Hornqvist put Pittsburgh in front for good with 7:36 remaining in the third period by deflecting Carl Hagelin's shot past Niemi.

Rust added some insurance with an empty-netter with 1:53 left (see full recap).

Reiner makes 46 saves in shutout
SUNRISE, Fla. -- James Reimer tied a season high with 46 saves to lead the Florida Panthers over the Boston Bruins 3-0 on Thursday night.

Making his first start in six games, Reimer earned his third shutout of the season. Nick Bjugstad had a goal and an assist, and Vincent Trocheck and Aaron Ekblad also scored. Evgenii Dadonov added two assists.

Florida moved within three points of idle New Jersey for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The Panthers, who have won 11 of their last 13 home games, have two games in hand on the Devils.

Anton Khudobin stopped 25 shots for the Bruins, shut out for the first time since their second game of the season, a 4-0 loss to Colorado on Oct. 9. The Bruins are four points behind Atlantic Division leader Tampa Bay, with one game in hand on the Lightning.

The Panthers stretched their lead to 3-0 on a power-play goal by Trocheck with 5:53 left in the second period. Trocheck's shot from the right circle went top shelf shot over Khudobin. Trocheck leads the team with 27 goals.

Aleksander Barkov's assist gave him 70 points, making him the first Panthers player since Olli Jokinen (71) in 2007-08 with 70 points in a season (see full recap).

Ovechkin scores a seat in an exclusive club

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Ovechkin scores a seat in an exclusive club

WASHINGTON -- Alex Ovechkin scored twice to reach 600 goals and Evgeny Kuznetsov had the overtime winner as the Washington Capitals returned to first place by beating the Winnipeg Jets 3-2 on Monday.

Ovechkin scored in each of the first two periods to get to 42 this season. The Russian winger became the 20th player and fourth-fastest in NHL history to 600 goals and is on pace to lead the league in goals for the seventh time.

Kuznetsov made it a night of celebration for Washington by scoring on a breakaway 4:11 into overtime.

Ovechkin's historic performance was crucial on a night when Jets winger Patrik Laine scored his 16th in the past 12 games to get to 41 this season. Nikolaj Ehlers also scored a 4-on-4 goal for Winnipeg, which got 40 saves from Connor Hellebuyck.

Capitals goaltender Philipp Grubauer stopped 26 shots in his third consecutive start (see full recap).

Jones, Blue Jackets continue to surge
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Seth Jones scored two first-period power-play goals, and the Columbus Blue Jackets won their fifth straight, 5-2 over the Montreal Canadiens on Monday night.

Nick Foligno, Boone Jenner and Ian Cole also scored, Alexander Wennberg had three assists and Artemi Panarin recorded two assists for Columbus.

Behind a run of eight wins in 11 games overall and a season-high six straight at home -- including a just-completed four-game homestand -- the Blue Jackets moved past idle New Jersey into the first wild-card position in the Eastern Conference. Columbus also edged within two points of third-place Philadelphia in the Metropolitan Division.

Down 4-2 until late, Montreal put Sergei Bobrovsky to the test in the third period. The two-time Vezina Trophy winner stopped all 24 shots the suddenly energetic Canadiens threw his way. He had 38 saves overall (see full recap).

Vesey, Zuccarello help Rangers down Hurricanes
NEW YORK -- Jimmy Vesey scored three times, Mats Zuccarello had two goals and the New York Rangers beat the Carolina Hurricanes 6-3 on Monday night.

Vladislav Namestnikov also scored for the Rangers, who ended a three-game losing streak and earned their first home win since Feb. 9. Pavel Buchnevich and Mika Zibanejad each had three assists.

Backup goalie Alexandar Georgiev made 41 saves for his second win of the season.

Teuvo Teravainen, Lee Stempniak and Victor Rask scored for the Hurricanes. Scott Darling, who has struggled in his first season with Carolina, made 17 stops.

Tied at 3 in the third, Vesey took a loose puck at the left faceoff circle and wristed a high shot past Darling at 12:15.

Zuccarello added an empty-netter at 17:23 for his 14th of the season and Vesey capped his hat trick with an empty-netter in the final minute for his 15th goal this season (see full recap).

Capital gain as Washington goes 1 point up on Penguins in Metro

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Capital gain as Washington goes 1 point up on Penguins in Metro

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Philipp Grubauer made 24 saves for his fifth career shutout and Nicklas Backstrom scored late in the second period to help the Washington Capitals salvage the final game of their California swing with a 2-0 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Saturday.

Washington was outscored 7-1 in losses to Anaheim and Los Angeles to open the trip before a narrow win in San Jose moved the Capitals one point ahead of Pittsburgh for first place in the Metropolitan Division.

Alex Ovechkin, two goals short of 600 for Washington, was held scoreless for the third straight game. Marc-Edouard Vlasic thwarted one chance for Ovechkin to get goal No. 599 with a strong back check and goalie Martin Jones robbed Ovechkin on a partial breakaway midway through the third period to keep San Jose's deficit at 1-0 (see full recap).

Leafs beat Penguins to snap skid
TORONTO -- Nazem Kadri scored twice and the Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-2 Saturday night to snap a four-game losing streak.

Kasperi Kapanen, Mitch Marner and Patrick Marleau also scored to help the Maple Leafs get their franchise-record 10th straight home win. Frederik Andersen, appearing in his 57th game this season, stopped 38 shots.

Sidney Crosby and Patrick Hornqvist scored for the Penguins, who had won three straight and nine of their last 12.

Andersen had a shutout going until Crosby got his 23rd of the season with 3:36 remaining with a backhander that went in off Toronto defenseman Ron Hainsey's stick to make it 4-1. It was Crosby's 26th career goal and 57th point against the Maple Leafs (see full recap).

Boyle's shootout winner leads Devils past Predators
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Brian Boyle scored in the fifth round of the shootout to lift the New Jersey Devils to a 3-2 victory over the Nashville Predators on Saturday night.

Boyle beat Nashville goalie Juuse Saros with a quick wrist shot from the slot on the blocker side.

New Jersey's Taylor Hall and Nashville's Kyle Turris each scored in the fourth round of the tiebreaker after none of the first six shooters could solve the opposing goalie.

Sami Vatanen and Boyle had the goals in regulation for New Jersey, winners of two of three. The Devils moved past idle Columbus into the first wild card spot in the Eastern Conference. Keith Kinkaid made 34 saves through overtime and denied four of Nashville's five attempts in the shootout (see full recap).