BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — Alexander Ovechkin’s industry in the NHL has at all times been scoring needs, and his climb up the NHL’s profession leaderboard has him on par with his coach’s favourite participant.
Ovechkin matched Phil Esposito for sixth on the NHL checklist with his 717th goal and the Washington Capitals beat the Buffalo Sabres 6-0 on Monday evening.
“Clearly, it’s good to be on this company,” Ovechkin mentioned about tying Esposito. “I upright discontinuance what I truly settle on to discontinuance. I try to make exercise of my chances and switch on.”
Ovechkin scored in the third length, serving to send the Capitals to their fifth straight select with his 1,299th profession level — one fearful of fixing into the 35th participant to attain 1,300.
“There would possibly be one thing going on with Ovi upright about every evening approved now with the postgame. Tonight, that would perhaps per chance per chance successfully be a extensive one,” Laviolette mentioned. “I grew up in Massachusetts observing Phil, so with a aim to grow up and leer him and the participant he became — and he additionally gave me my likelihood in hockey and in the organization — so I’ve identified Phil for a truly very long time and became an impossible participant, impossible goal scorer.
“Now to uncover a gamble to work with Ovi and have confidence these two guys sitting here at the same amount is rather, rather unbelievable so I’m truly jubilant for ‘O.’”
Ovechkin scored from the slot off a pass from venerable Sabre Conor Sheary, who discovered him cutting in direction of the to find. He snapped a transient shot past Carter Hutton, who became screened.
Vitek Vanecek stopped 23 shots for his first NHL shutout and improved to 4-0-1 in opposition to the Sabres. Evgeny Kuznetsov, Nicklas Backstrom, Richard Panik, Daniel Sprong and Garnet Hathaway additionally scored for Washington, which stale three needs in the 2d length to switch to within two functions of the New York Islanders in the Eastern Division. The Capitals face the Islanders on Tuesday evening.
“(The next sport) is basically on our mind, upright as the game improved here and took earnings of the bench and we understand it is a extensive sport the next day and we can to find home tonight, let the fellows rest in the morning and be ready to head,” Laviolette mentioned.
After Kuznetsov gave the Capitals a 1-0 lead at 18: 46 of the famous length with his 400th NHL level, Backstrom made it 2-0 at 2: 41 of the 2d. Backstrom’s 11th goal of the season came in his 984th sport with the Capitals, passing Calle Johansson for 2d-most video games in franchise history.
Panik made it 3-0 at 5: 59 with a one-timer after defenseman Dmitry Orlov stole the puck at center ice after a pass from Brandon Montour went long.
Sprong made it 4-0 when he came in on a breakaway in which his shot beat Hutton up excessive for his third goal previously four video games and sixth of the season at 15: 07.
Hathaway gave the Capitals a 5-0 lead at 6: 46 of the third length when he deflected a level shot from Justin Schultz past Hutton for his fourth of the year.
Hutton made 24 saves for Buffalo, which is 0-9-2 in its past 11 video games, the third-longest skid in crew history. The Sabres are 0-8-1 of their past nine home video games, the 2d-longest winless perambulate in franchise history at the attend of the 12-sport scurry after they went 0-6-1 with five ties between Jan. 10 to March 27, 1991.
“The fetch clearly is impolite,” Sabres coach Ralph Krueger mentioned. “I don’t feel stop out of any one. It’s for others to make a resolution.”
The Capitals were without center Lars Eller because of a lower-body rupture he suffered in Saturday’s 5-4 select in opposition to the Philadelphia Flyers. Eller has five needs and 7 assists in 22 video games this season.
Sabres ahead Cody Eakin became a healthy scratch for the famous time this season. Eakin, in the famous season of a $4.5 million, two-year contract he signed with Buffalo in the offseason, has one goal and three assists in 26 video games. He had five needs and 10 assists for the Winnipeg Jets and Vegas Golden Knights final season.
The Capitals went with 11 forwards and 7 defensemen in opposition to the Sabres. Defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk changed Eller in the lineup and performed in his first sport since Feb. 7. Van Riemsdyk has one goal in eight video games.
The Sabres recalled center Rasmus Asplund from the taxi squad and despatched defenseman Brandon Davidson to the taxi squad. Asplund performed in his first sport since Feb. 25 and his fifth of the season. Asplund changed Eakin in the lineup.
Capitals: Face the Islanders on Tuesday evening to initiating a six-sport homestand.
Sabres: Visit the Devils on Tuesday evening sooner than returning home for a two-sport home in opposition to the Boston Bruins on Thursday and Saturday that would perhaps per chance per chance be the famous video games with fans in attendance in Buffalo. Thursday’s sport will have confidence 700 frontline crew.
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