The Washington Capitals welcomed back Nicklas Backstrom and took a big step toward the playoffs Saturday night, blowing a two-goal lead for the second game in a row before taking the shootout for a 3-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens.
The result, coupled with Toronto's 4-3 win over Buffalo, moved the Capitals two points clear of the Sabres with three games to play. Washington also moved within two points of Southeast Division leader Florida.
Alex Ovechkin and Alexander Semin scored in the shootout for the Capitals. David Desharnais had his attempt stopped by goaltender Michal Neuvirth, and Max Pacioretty missed wide for the Canadiens.
The Capitals essentially put on a repeat performance from Thursday, when they also lost a 2-0 lead at Boston before getting a 3-2 shootout win.
Mathieu Perreault and Jay Beagle scored first-period goals, and Neuvirth made 38 saves for the Capitals, but the main attraction was top-line center Backstrom, who was sidelined for 40 games with a concussi...