Washington Capitals

Ovechkin nabs league goals lead with OT marker

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Ovechkin nabs league goals lead with OT marker

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Alex Ovechkin scored his NHL-leading 26th goal 1:57 into overtime, and the Washington Capitals beat the Carolina Hurricanes 5-4 on Tuesday night for their third straight win.

Ovechkin also tied it with 7:15 left in regulation, with Nicklas Backstrom assisting on both goals. Alex Chiasson, Devante Smith-Pelly and Dmitry Orlov each scored for the Capitals, who went to overtime for the sixth time in eight games.

Teuvo Teravainen and Elias Lindholm scored in the third period, and Victor Rask had two goals for the Hurricanes, who trailed by two midway through the second. They rallied to take a short-lived lead midway through the third before Ovechkin struck twice to end their six-game home winning streak.

After Sebastian Aho hit the post in OT for Carolina, Ovechkin headed the other way and fired a shot from the right circle that beat Cam Ward to end it (see full recap).

Blues continue dominance over Devils
ST. LOUIS -- Carter Hutton stopped 24 shots through overtime and both New Jersey attempts in the shootout, Brayden Schenn and Vladimir Tarasenko scored in the tiebreaker, and the Blues beat the Devils 3-2 Tuesday night.

Tarasenko and Vladimir Sobotka scored in regulation as St. Louis got its ninth straight win against New Jersey, dating back to a 7-1 loss to the Devils on Jan. 21, 2014. The Blues have a 30-11 scoring edge during the win streak.

Hutton improved to 7-3-0 on the season. He made an eye-popping pad save on Marcus Johansson with 2:09 left in overtime, and then stopped Taylor Hall and Kyle Palmieri in the shootout.

Nico Hischier and Hall scored for New Jersey. Keith Kincaid made 27 stops through overtime, but failed on both shootout shots. The Devils have lost three straight (see full recap).

Vasilevskiy, Lightning shut out Leafs
TORONTO -- Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 30 shots for his NHL-best sixth shutout of the season to lead the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 2-0 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday night.

Vasilevskiy got his league-leading 26th win, and Cedrick Paquette and Alex Killorn scored for Tampa Bay, which won for the 12th time in 14 games.

Frederik Andersen had 34 saves for Toronto, which lost its third straight and is 3-6-1 in its last 10 games.

Tampa Bay controlled much of the pace during the first period, outshooting Toronto 25-12. The Lightning opened the scoring when Chris Kunitz stripped the puck from Andersen while the goalie was handling it behind the net. Kunitz centered a pass to Paquette in the slot and he converted at 12:00 for his first goal since last Jan. 21.

The Lightning added to their lead when Killorn's shot from the circle went through Andersen's legs. Initially, game officials let play resume as they ruled no goal at the time but after 22 seconds the league office called in to interrupt play and award Tampa the goal at with 3:06 remaining (see full recap).

There's a new leader atop the Metropolitan Division

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There's a new leader atop the Metropolitan Division

WASHINGTON -- Nicklas Backstrom and John Carlson had a goal and two assists each, Alex Ovechkin had three assists and the Washington Capitals beat the New Jersey Devils 5-2 on Saturday night to move atop the Metropolitan Division.

Braden Holtby stopped 25 shots as Washington won its eighth straight home game. Christian Djoos had a goal and an assist, and Tom Wilson and Matt Niskanen also scored for the Capitals.

New Jersey had gone eight games without a regulation loss. John Moore scored ate in the first period and Travis Zajac midway through the third. Corey Schneider stopped 30 shots.

Marcus Johansson played in his first game as a visitor in Washington after seven seasons with the Capitals and assisted on both goals.

Wilson got the game's first goal, his sixth of the season, beating Schneider at 2:26 in the first period. Djoos gave the Capitals a 2-0 lead at 11:09. It was Djoos' third goal this season and his first since Oct. 21.

After Moore's goal, Carlson's fourth at 7:01 of the second made it 3-1. Niskanen added his third goal of the season at 4:25 of the third. Backstrom added his eighth goal, an empty-netter, in the game's final minute.

The win was Washington coach Barry Trotz's 737th. He's now in fifth place on the career list, passing Lindy Ruff (see full recap).

Reimer stops 37 for another shutout, Panthers beat Habs
SUNRISE, Fla. -- James Reimer stopped 37 shots for his second shutout in three games and the Florida Panthers beat the Montreal Canadiens 2-0 on Saturday night.

It's been a busy month for Reimer since starter Roberto Luongo was injured Dec. 4, and he capped December with another stellar show. He also beat Ottawa 1-0 a week ago with a 38-save effort.

Vincent Trocheck and Connor Brickley scored for the Panthers, who won their fifth straight game with Reimer in goal. Brickley also had an assist.

Carey Price made 32 saves for Montreal, which has lost four straight. The Canadiens have been held to one goal or fewer in four straight games.

The Panthers' winning streak is their longest since they won five straight from Feb. 11-20.

Trocheck put the Panthers ahead 2-0 with 8:11 left in the third period. MacKenzie Weegar passed across the slot to Trocheck, who fired the puck past Price.

Brickley gave the Panthers a 1-0 lead 4:02 into the second. Mark Pysyk took a shot that bounced off Brickley in the left circle. Brickley grabbed the loose puck, spun around and shot the puck past Price (see full recap).

Ryan Spooner, Tuukka Rask help Bruins shut out Senators
OTTAWA, Ontario -- Ryan Spooner scored twice and Tuukka Rask made 25 saves in the Boston Bruins' 5-0 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Saturday night.

Noel Acciari, David Krejci and Patrice Bergeron also scored for the Bruins, 5-1 winners over the Senators on Wednesday night in Boston. Rask had his second shutout of the season and 40th overall.

Mike Condon stopped 29 shots for the Senators. Ottawa was shut out five times in December, going 4-8-2 in the month. The Senators have been outscored 14-6 in their past three games.

Boston took a 4-0 lead in the second, scoring three goals on 13 shots.

Sean Kuraly provided a screen for Acciari, who beat Condon off his backhand for a 2-0 advantage. Just over two minutes later, Ben Harpur, looking to shoot the puck in at the blue line, had his shot picked off by Spooner, who broke in alone and beat Condon through the legs.

Krejci, returning to the lineup after missing six games with an upper-body injury, then picked up Charlie McAvoy's rebound and tucked it in at the side of the net on the power play. The Bruins took a 5-0 lead in the opening minutes of the third when Bergeron tipped Torey Krug' shot for their third power-play goal of the game.

The Bruins opened the scoring at 8:13 of the first on the man advantage. After a couple of solid saves by Condon, a rebound popped right out to Spooner (see full recap).

Best of NHL: Islanders shut down Capitals to snap 5-game skid

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Best of NHL: Islanders shut down Capitals to snap 5-game skid

NEW YORK -- Jaroslav Halak made 31 saves after getting a vote of confidence from his coach, and the New York Islanders beat the Washington Capitals 3-1 on Monday night to snap a five-game winless streak.

Brock Nelson, Andrew Ladd and John Tavares scored goals for the Islanders, who built a 3-0 lead early in the second period and ended Washington's four-game winning streak.

It was the second time this season that Halak held an opponent to a single goal and the third time New York has allowed one goal as a team. Halak's strong performance came after coach Doug Weight sternly defended his goaltenders following the team's skate Monday morning. New York was 0-3-2 over its last five games.

Braden Holtby made nine saves for the Capitals before being pulled after the Islanders scored their third goal 1:34 into the second period. Philipp Grubauer made 17 saves in relief, and Dmitry Orlov scored Washington's only goal (see full recap).

Bernier makes 39 saves as Avalanche top Penguins
PITTSBURGH -- Jonathan Bernier stopped 39 shots and Mark Barberio scored in the third period, helping the Colorado Avalanche top the Pittsburgh Penguins 2-1 on Monday night.

Blake Comeau added an empty netter against his former team as Colorado won its second straight after a string of six losses in seven games. It was Comeau's seventh of the season.

Barberio put the Avalanche ahead to stay 6:17 into the third. His slap shot off the rush hit Pittsburgh forward Riley Sheahan in front and got past goaltender Tristan Jarry.

Bernier was on track for his second shutout of the season before Phil Kessel scored his 15th goal for Pittsburgh at 19:48. Bernier beat the Penguins for just the second time in 10 career games (see full recap).

Perreault, Jets beat Canucks to snap skid
WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Mathieu Perreault scored two goals and added an assist to help the Winnipeg Jets halt a three-game losing streak with a 5-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Monday night.

The win was the Jets' seventh straight victory at home and they have points in their last 11 games (10-0-1) at Bell MTS Place.

The Canucks have lost three straight in regulation for the first time this season.

Dmitry Kulikov, Josh Morrissey and Nikolaj Ehlers also scored for Winnipeg (18-8-5). Ehlers' 14th of the season was on the power play and gave him goals in three straight games.

Brock Boeser scored his team-leading 16th goal for the Canucks. He also extended his goal-scoring streak to three games.

Connor Hellebuyck made 25 saves for Winnipeg (see full recap).