Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images
The Washington Capitals beat-up the Buffalo Sabres 5-1 Saturday night at Capital One Arena. Evgeny Kuznetsov would open the scoring just 50 seconds into the contest to give the Caps a 1-0 lead at the first intermission. Andre Burakovsky would stretch the Caps lead with a gorgeous end-to-end goal midway through the second period to give the Caps a 2-0 lead at the second break. The Sabres would cut the lead to one just 14 seconds into the final frame, but Alex Ovechkin would answer with a power play goal, Lars Eller would add an empty net goal and Alex Ovechkin would score his second goal of the game for the Caps 5-1 win. The Capitals return to the ice Monday night when they visit the Blue Jackets in Columbus. Puck drop is 7:00 p.m.
Philipp Grubauer (6-7-3, 2.62 GAA, .916 sv%) got the start in goal for the Capitals. Robin Lehner (13-22-8, 2.92 GAA, .911 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the Sabres. The Capitals starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the contest:
Scratches: Jakub Vrana, Jakub Jerabek and Madison Bowey were the healthy scratches.
The Capitals would begin the scoring just 50 seconds into the contest. Evgeny Kuznetsov would take a puck from center ice and drive down the right wing, crossing over and finishing with a sharp angle from the left side to give the Caps the early 1-0 lead. Brett Connolly and Dmitry Orlov were credited with the helpers.
And that would be all of the scoring for the opening frame. Buffalo outshot Washington 9-8 for the opening 20 minutes.
The Sabres would pick up their forecheck midway through the middle frame, which rendered several decent scoring chances, but Grubauer said no to all of them.
The Capitals would finally flip the script and stretch their lead to 2-0 with an end-to-end goal by Andre Burakovsky at 13:20 of the middle frame.
The second period would end with the Capitals leading 2-0. The Capitals outshot the Sabres 12-9 for the middle frame and led 20-18 after two periods of play.
The Sabres would make it 2-1 just 14 seconds into the final period with a goal from Sam Reinhart. This was Reinharts 14th goal of the season.
Alex Ovechkin would restore the two goal lead with a power play goal at 10:13 of the final frame. This was Ovechkin’s 37th goal of the season.
Lars Eller would add an empty net goal and Alex Ovechkin would score his second tally of the game to seal the 5-1 win.
- Andre Burakovsky had 4 goals in his first 29 games this season. Burakovsky has 4 goals in 7 games since.
- Alex Ovechkin scored his 37th and 38th goal of the season. He’s now four goals shy of 600 career goals.
- The NHL box score is here.
SCENES FROM THE DISTRICT