With the hockey world abuzz about Alex Ovechkin’s latest pair of performances Washington hosted Buffalo after defeating the Hurricanes last night in Raleigh. After 65 minutes of play couldn’t settle anything it was Ovechkin with the deciding shootout goal and providing the Capitals a 4 to 3 victory.
Here’s Saturday night’s Plus/Minus:
Plus: Ovechkin extended his point streak to 14 consecutive games, a new career high. He tallied his 29th goal (!) of the season in the second period.
Minus: Both of Washington’s special teams struggled tonight. The power play went scoreless on four opportunities and the penalty kill allowed a pair of goals on three chances.
Ten more notes on the game.
- Less than three minutes into the contest Buffalo spotted themselves the lead as time expired on a Michal Kempny minor penalty. Jack Eichel pumped home a Rasmus Dahlin rebound from the left circle with Sam Reinhart and Ramus Dahlin picking up assists on the play.
- Only 58 seconds later, though, Washington would strike back. With Carter Hutton playing the puck behind Buffalo’s net Devante Smith-Pelly stole possession and fed Brett Connolly in front for the easy tally.
- And before the first period came to its conclusion Jakub Vrana put the Capitals ahead with a wicked slap shot from the top of the slot. Strong wall play from Tom Wilson and a deft pass from Evgeny Kuznetsov put the puck on a platter for Vrana’s 10th of the season.
- Early in the second stanza Eichel knotted the score with a nasty shortside shot from the goal line. After dancing around Dmitry Orlov Eichel put the puck up and over Pheonix Copley’s left shoulder for the power play goal.
- Almost five minutes later Dahlin put the Sabres ahead again with a second consecutive man advantage tally. The rookie rearguard found himself with time and space in the slot and slipped a shot under Copley’s right led pad and into the net.
- But the Capitals’ Captain would draw Washington even at three in the game’s 34th minute. Orlov and Nicklas Backstrom teamed up to create an offensive zone turn over from Buffalo before Ovechkin slammed a slap shot past Hutton’s left side.
- With the tally Ovechkin extended his goal streak to six consecutive games, during which time he has scored ten times.
- The teams traded chances in the third period but the best belonged to Buffalo with one minute to go. Reinhart found himself above the crease with an empty net but his shot hit the left post and bounced safely to the corner, sending the contest to extra time.
- An entertaining five minutes did not provide a goal so Washington went to the shootout for the second night in a row.
- And in the shootout it was Evgeny Kuznetsov, Casey Mittlestadt, and Ovechkin scoring through four rounds for the margin of victory.