Daniel Sprong’s tiebreaking purpose early within the third interval propelled the Washington Capitals to a 6-3 victory over the fading New York Rangers, who had been knocked out of playoff rivalry Monday night time.
Nic Dowd, Conor Sheary, Garnet Hathaway, Nicklas Backstrom and Tom Wilson additionally scored for the Capitals as they snapped a two-game skid. Vitek Vanecek made 23 saves to earn the nineteenth win of his rookie season.
“It’s a gutsy win,” Capitals defenseman John Carlson mentioned after getting back from a two-game absence. “These are necessary factors, necessary video games for us as a workforce. I feel there have been a variety of guys battling additional arduous. It wasn’t the best of video games the best way it performed out. I favored the best way we caught with it, overcame some adversity all through totally different factors of the sport.”
Mika Zibanejad scored twice and Kaapo Kakko had a purpose for New York, which dropped its third consecutive recreation. Artemi Panarin added two assists and Igor Shesterkin stopped 34 photographs, however the younger Rangers had been eradicated from the postseason image when Boston beat New Jersey.
“Simply one other stage of disappointment,” coach David Quinn mentioned. “Simply didn’t get sufficient completed this 12 months. Had some nice moments, some nice stretches, however simply wasn’t sufficient.”
Alex Ovechkin returned to the lineup after lacking 4 video games with a lower-body damage however went to the locker room after taking part in 39 seconds within the first interval and didn’t return. Washington’s captain stays one purpose from tying Marcel Dionne for fifth on the NHL’s profession listing.
Sprong put the Capitals forward 4-3 at 4:37 of the third. Rangers defenseman Brendan Smith misplayed a puck that arrange Sprong for his twelfth purpose of the season.
“He’s attempting to assault the sport with velocity. He’s a quick participant and I feel the targets are a results of that,” Capitals coach Peter Laviolette mentioned. “When he’s transferring, he’s harmful. … The final 5 – 6 video games, he has performed properly, he has stood out.”
Backstrom supplied insurance coverage when he flipped the puck over Shesterkin’s glove at 11:41 to make it 5-3.
Hathaway knotted the sport at 3 together with his sixth of the season at 18:30 of the second. Dowd stripped the puck from 21-year-old defenseman Okay’Andre Miller previous to a scramble in entrance that Hathaway finally capitalized on.
“I believed it was a very good forecheck by us and that’s one thing we take a variety of satisfaction in,” Hathaway mentioned. “It’s a line purpose for positive — they don’t need to be fairly.”
New York erased a 2-0 deficit with three consecutive targets.
Zibanejad notched his second of the sport on the facility play at 2:30 of the second. Ryan Strome discovered the Swedish heart on their own within the slot after receiving a cross-ice move from Panarin.
Kakko gave New York a 3-2 benefit at 4:35 with a talented forehand-backhand maneuver. Alexis Lafreniere fooled Washington defenseman Zdeno Chara with a deke to his backhand to arrange Kaako.
Zibanejad trimmed the Rangers’ first-period deficit to 1 purpose together with his twenty first of the season at 18:00. Panarin acquired a move outdoors the blue line, then gracefully spun into the offensive zone and located a streaking Zibanejad. The purpose snapped a Rangers scoring drought of 144:11 that included back-to-back shutout losses towards the New York Islanders.
The Capitals gained a two-goal benefit with first-period targets from Dowd and Sheary simply 92 seconds aside.
Dowd opened the scoring when his wrist shot zipped by means of the legs of Shesterkin at 14:12.
Washington doubled its benefit when a puck eluded a number of Rangers skaters and located its solution to Sheary’s stick earlier than a turnaround wrist shot. Michael Raffl and Wilson assisted.
Panarin didn’t return after a second-period quarrel that led to a double-minor penalty and 10-minute misconduct for Wilson. The bruising ahead added an empty-net purpose late within the third.
“I determine it is best to have some extra respect for the sport and for the gamers,” Zibanejad mentioned of Wilson’s play. “I don’t truthfully know the place to begin, it’s simply horrible. Zero respect. I don’t know why I’m shocked, however yeah, simply horrible.”
Capitals ahead Evgeny Kuznetsov and goaltender Ilya Samsonov didn’t costume for disciplinary causes after being late to a workforce operate. … F T.J. Oshie missed the sport whereas attending to a private household matter. … D Justin Schultz unexpectedly didn’t take part in warmups as a result of a lower-body damage. Because of this, Washington was solely in a position to costume 17 skaters (11 forwards, six defensemen) as an alternative of the permitted 18.
The Rangers are the one NHL workforce that has 5 gamers with no less than 44 factors (no different workforce has greater than three). New York is certainly one of two golf equipment with three gamers who’ve 20 or extra targets (Pittsburgh is the opposite).
The Rangers are within the midst of a 17-game stretch through which they solely play within the New York metropolitan space (11 video games at MSG, 4 at Nassau Coliseum and two at Prudential Heart in New Jersey). It started April 6 and can finish Thursday when the Rangers go to Boston.
The groups conclude their eight-game season sequence Wednesday night time at Madison Sq. Backyard.