WASHINGTON (AP) — Alex Ovechkin scored twice, Ilya Samsonov made 24 saves and the Washington Capitals rode their very most bright gamers to a 4-0 victory Friday night and two-game sweep of the Sleek Jersey Devils.
Ovechkin has scored 10 situations in his previous 10 games and has a personnel-very most bright 17 targets this season. He’s eight anxious of Marcel Dionne for fifth on the NHL’s profession purpose checklist after scoring his 722nd and 723rd and is tied for sixth in the league after inserting up appropriate seven in his first 19 games.
“I mediate he took it to heart when all americans turned into asserting he had a spoiled originate,” talked about Conor Sheary, who had a purpose and an back. “He’s potentially primarily the most up up to now guy in the league now, but it no doubt seems luxuriate in every shot he takes is unhealthy. It’s appropriate unbelievable how many alternatives he’s ready to get dangle of and the blueprint many targets he’s ready to attain.”
Nicklas Backstrom scored his 13th purpose of the season, whereas Evgeny Kuznetsov and Tom Wilson every had two assists. Samsonov needed to set aside a mountainous conclude 30 seconds in but wasn’t examined phenomenal after that, bettering to 7-1-1 alongside with his first shutout since Jan. 13, 2020.
“Not too phenomenal work,” Samsonov talked about. “Correct (standing) abet observing the sport. Thanks, personnel.”
With Ovechkin rolling, the Capitals believe obtained nine of their previous 10 games and are abet atop the East Division. They’re tied at 48 aspects with feeble coach Barry Trotz’s Sleek York Islanders but defend the tiebreaker having played one fewer game.
Washington appeared extra luxuriate in itself — a poised, aged personnel — in the second game against Sleek Jersey in two nights following four days off. Whereas they came abet to rep Thursday, the Capitals by no formula trailed on this one, their sixth in a row without center Lars Eller attributable to a decrease-body hurt.
A lot luxuriate in early in the season when they were without Ovechkin, Kuznetsov, Samsonov and Dmitry Orlov concurrently and earlier this month when Wilson turned into suspended for seven games, the Capitals retain showing they are able to play at a high stage without key contributors. T.J. Oshie shifted to center to take Eller’s long-established affirm, and Daniel Sprong appeared pleased on the first line with Ovechkin and Kuznetsov.
“We’ve got a quantity of depth and versatility,” talked about Wilson, who has four aspects in four games since getting back from his suspension. “Guys can soar in and take revenue. There’s nothing higher as a teammate when a guy goes down than to search guys rally collectively.”
Backstrom has been a relentless as Washington’s very most bright player and leads the personnel with 35 aspects. Kuznetsov took a whereas to get dangle of aged to new coach Peter Laviolette and get dangle of his game abet after missing nearly a month bettering from COVID-19 and now has 11 aspects in his previous nine games.
The Devils lost two in a row to Washington after a hit four of their earlier 5 games.
“It’s no longer luxuriate in we played spoiled,” Devils center Travis Zajac unhappy. “Give them credit rating. They’re a aged personnel. They know learn how to rep games. They set aside it sophisticated. We competed this day. We didn’t believe adequate to enact the job.”
Vitek Vanecek and Samsonov believe now spoil up goaltending tasks for five abet-to-abet objects this season. The Capitals believe swept four of them, with the younger netminders constructing up proof they’d possibly well raise the weight in the playoffs without extra skilled back.
“They’ve been in actuality correct,” Laviolette talked about. “First and predominant of the twelve months, you’ve got a pair younger guys that ought to advise themselves. You might possibly well give someone a possibility. It’s up to them to set aside the many of the opportunity, and I mediate they believe.”
Jesper Boqvist played his first NHL game since Jan. 31, changing Carve Merkley in the Devils lineup. Merkley turned into demoted to the taxi squad to set aside room on the roster for Boqvist despite scoring his second purpose of the season Thursday night.
Devils: Continue their boulevard day creep at Boston, where they’ll face the Bruins on Sunday in the opener of a two-game series.
Capitals: Wrap up a six-game homestand Sunday against the Sleek York Rangers.
Notice AP Hockey Creator Stephen Whyno on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SWhyno.
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