Tom Wilson scored twice and Alex Ovechkin moved up the all-time goals list as the Washington Capitals earned a 5-3 win against the visiting Buffalo Sabres on Monday.
Ovechkin scored his 741st career goal to tie Brett Hull for fourth most in NHL history. He added two assists for Washington, which was 0-2-1 in the previous three games. Ovechkin’s goal was his league-leading 11th of the season, and his second assist was the 600th of his career.
Washington’s Connor McMichael and John Carlson added goals while Evgeny Kuznetsov notched three assists. Capitals goalie Vitek Vanecek made 25 saves.
Cody Eakin, Anders Bjork and Colin Miller scored and Dustin Tokarski made 25 saves for the Sabres, who are 0-4-1 in their past five games.
Wilson opened the scoring at 2:13 of the first period, deflecting a point shot from defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk to give the Capitals a 1-0 lead.
The Capitals outshot the Sabres 12-6 and out-attempted them 22-11 in the first period, keeping Buffalo hemmed in on several occasions.
The home side connected early again in the second period to double the lead. Defenseman Justin Schultz spotted McMichael streaking in off the bench, and the rookie forward wristed a shot from the top of the left circle to make it 2-0 at 2:30.
The Sabres quickly responded to pull within 2-1 at 3:43. Ovechkin blew a tire near the Capitals’ blue line as he tried to clear the zone and Eakin capitalized, picking up the loose puck to strike from the right circle.
Ovechkin restored Washington’s two-goal lead at 8:55, deflecting Dmitry Orlov’s point shot from the slot to make it 3-1.
Bjork brought the Sabres to within in 3-2 at 3:17 of the third period, getting on a bouncing puck amid a scramble in the crease.
Kuznetsov found Wilson alone at the bottom of the right circle, and the winger cut to the front of the net and beat Tokarski five-hole to make it 4-2 at 6:45.
Conor Sheary deflected Carlson’s point shot on the power play to extend it to 5-2 at 17:47.
Miller narrowed the deficit to 5-3 with a blast from the point at 18:56.
Ovechkin is 25 goals behind third-place Jaromir Jagr on the all-time list, but he has a long way to go to catch the top two: Wayne Gretzky (894) and Gordie Howe (801).
–Field Level Media
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