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Alex Ovechkin feasts on Blues for hat trick in Caps' Thanksgiving eve win

Alex Ovechkin feasts on Blues for hat trick in Caps' Thanksgiving eve win

The Capitals defeated the St. Louis Blues on Thanksgiving eve 4-3 thanks to a strong showing from Alex Ovechkin and company. 

How it happened: Carter Hutton had an impressive night in goal for the Blues, but Alex Ovechkin was too much. Ovechkin got things started in the first period thanks to a one-timer on a power play, one of the six penalties called in the first stanza. In the second period, Ovechkin pushed a one-timer wide of Hutton, but the puck made its way back to him seconds later on a carom, and Ovechkin found the back of the net for a 2-0 lead. But just seconds later, Vladimir Tarasenko pushed one past Braden Holtby off an assist from Dimitrij Jaskin.

Evgeny Kuznetsov added a goal in the third period — to go along with one assist — off a nifty pass from Dmitry Orlov to give the Caps a 3-1 lead. Less than a minute later, Ovechkin found the back of the net again on a beautiful wrist shot for the hat trick. With just over a minute left in the game, defenseman Alex Pietrangelo scored on a power play to cut the deficit to 4-2. Then, with 30 seconds left, Carter Hutton went to the bench and the Blues scored with a man advantage thanks to Tarasenko, making it 4-3. 

What it means: The Caps got off to another fast start, taking a 1-0 lead to the first intermission. The Capitals have outscored their opponents 22-8 in the first period this season. With three games left in November, the Caps have put together a 7-3-1 record in the penultimate month on the calendar. 

Alex OvechKing of Multi-goal games: Alex Ovechkin scored thrice — one-timers from his sweet spot in the first and second period, and a blistering wristshot in the third for a hat trick. When the second goal found the back of the net, Ovechkin officially moved atop the list of players with the most multi-goal games since 1995. Ovechkin has found the back of the net at least twice in 110 games. He made his NHL debut in 2005. 

The last time the Capitals faced the Blues — April 9 of last season — Ovechkin put up a hat trick as well. 

So. Many. Penalties: The referees blew the whistle six times in the first period. The Caps got 23 seconds of 5-on-3 time and nearly a full session of 4-on-4 action. The two teams cut down on the penalties in the second, with the Capitals heading to the box twice, and the Blues just once. The Third period was much cleaner, but a late 

Tale of two nets: Carter Hutton was a busy man for the Blues. The backup netminder faced 25 shots, turning away 21, including a beautiful lunging save to deny Andre Burakovsky in the second period. On the flipside, Braden Holtby had an easy night, thanks to the Capitals' offense dominating time of possession. Holtby faced 21 shots, turning away 18, most of them coming late in the game. Matt Niskanen had a strong showing on defense, which led to the Caps keeping the puck away from Holtby's crease. 

Look ahead: The Caps return to Verizon Center on Friday to host the Buffalo Sabres before heading north of the border to face off against rookie phenom Austen Matthews and the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday. The Caps then have four days off before returning to the ice to face the Islanders at home on Thursday, Dec. 1.

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Capitals hosting Rock The Rink skate and watch parties around DMV

Capitals hosting Rock The Rink skate and watch parties around DMV

The Capitals may not be participating in Stadium Series this year, but the team is embracing outdoor hockey around Washington for spirited game day fun.

The Caps are hosting Rock The Rink skates at The Wharf, Penatgon Row, Rockville Town Square and The Avenue at White Marsh on select game days from January to March 2020. Fans attending these events can wear Capitals jerseys or gear to get either $5 off admission or free skate rentals.

The Wharf

Jan. 18 at 1 p.m., Jan. 31 at 6 p.m., and Feb 17. at 1 p.m.

Transit Pier will boast a Capitals-paneled ice rink with an ice resurfacer, trivia contests, giveaways, along with a DJ. The Capitals Campire will also boast Adirondack chairs around a fire to roast marshmallows for smores in front of a 14-foot jumbotron screen to watch the Capitals games. 

Pentagon Row

Feb. 27 at 7 p.m. and March 9 at 6 p.m.

These skates will feature Slapshot, giveaways, a DJ and Capitals-centic specials at local restaurants. The Caps games will also be on at surrounding bars. 

The Avenue at White March

Feb. 7 at 6 p.m.

This event will feature Slapshot, giveaways, a DJ and Capitals-centic specials at local restaurants.

Rockville Town Square

Jan. 31 at 5:30 p.m. and March 5 at 6 p.m.

In addition to the above fun, Rockville native and Capitals hockey ambassador Haley Skarupa will be there on Jan. 31. You can watch the Capitals game at local bars as well. 

Fans attending these events or using local outdoor rinks this season are encouraged to post about it on social media by tagging @capitals and using the hashtag #RockTheRink to enter themselves for a chance to win prizes.

Caps slept through the first 40 minutes, they did not give Holtby much help though he was bad in his own right and Vrana sure did show something with the game-winning goal.

As for no penalties...not so much.


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Caps pull off inexplicable comeback win with five-goal third period

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Caps pull off inexplicable comeback win with five-goal third period

Down 4-1, the Capitals scored five goals in the third period for the incredible 6-4 comeback win over the New York Islanders on Saturday. Alex Ovechkin scored a hat trick pulling him in a tie with Steve Yzerman for ninth all-time in goals.

Here is how the Caps won.


Ovechkin was hot coming in with five goals in his past two games. He scored midway through the first period, getting a great pass in stride from Nicklas Backstrom to launch him behind the defense. Just as the defense closed in he fired a wrister past Semyon Varlamov to make it 1-0.

There is...pretty much nothing positive to say after that until the third period. There was a great 5-on-3 penalty kill, but it was essentially negated as they allowed a goal soon after. The Islanders built a 4-1 lead through 40 minutes and it looked all but over.

But after Carl Hagelin made it 4-2, Ovechkin pulled the Caps to within one, pulling the vintage back-to-front Ovechkin curl-and-drag before passing to the front where the puck deflected off the boot of Ryan Pulock and in.

After Jakub Vrana made it 5-4, Ovechkin added the empty-netter for the knockout punch.

With three goals, Ovechkin now has 34 on the season. He passed Mario Lemieux and tied Steve Yzerman for ninth all-time in goals. Incredibly, this is the first time in his career Ovechkin has three straight multi-goal games.


Just what exactly lit the fire under the Caps butts for that third period will probably be a talking point after the game. Was it Devon Toews doing the bird celebration after he scored to make it 4-1? Was it pulling Braden Holtby and starting Ilya Samsonov in the third period? Was it something Todd Reirden or one of the players said?

Whatever it was, it was a different Caps team that took the ice for the third period.

Hagelin's turnaround

As great as Ovechkin's performance was -- and it was epic -- it might not happen without the Carl Hagelin's early third-period tally.

The comeback was sparked by Hagelin's goal that came less than three minutes into the final frame. A great pass by Richard Panik set Hagelin up on the doorstep and he hit it home.

That goal made it 4-2 and a two-goal deficit seems a lot less daunting than a three-goal one.

Shaky Varlamov

Once Ovechkin made it 4-3, you could smell the blood in the water. Washington had gotten to Varlamov and the flood gates were open.

Dmitry Orlov took the puck up to the top of the faceoff circle and fired a slap shot that Wilson managed to get a stick to and deflected it through Varlamov to tie the game.

About three minutes later, Vrana intercepted a pass and fired a quick shot to beat Varlamov far-side for the 5-4 lead.

Varlamov faced 10 shots in the third period and allowed four goals. The fifth came on an empty net.