Posted April 07, 2013 on
AP on Fox
Alex Ovechkin recorded his 12th career hat trick and added an assist, and the surging Washington Capitals survived a late rally by the Florida Panthers for a 4-3 victory on Saturday night.
Ovechkin scored twice from in close on the power play, and weaved through traffic for his other goal, as the Capitals (19-17-2) improved to 8-2-1 in their last 11 games in completing a four-game season sweep of the Panthers.
The Capitals, who scored at least five goals against Florida in their previous three games, struck quickly with a pair of goals from Mike Ribeiro and Ovechkin within 1:41 early in the second period.
Braden Holtby made 27 saves in posting his fifth career victory over the Panthers (12-20-6) without a loss.
The Panthers, who were seeking their fourth straight victory, rallied in the third period behind two goals from Tomas Kopecky and another by Peter Mueller.
Ovechkin, who has 23 goals this season, started his night by beating Jacob Markstrom from the stick side following a five-minute boarding penalty to Panthers' defenseman Erik Gudbranson in the first period. Ovechkin tipped in a cross-ice pass from Ribeiro just over a minute following the major.
Gudbranson's penalty, which included a game misconduct, followed a hit from behind to right-winger Martin Erat at the 14:37 mark of the first period.
Erat, who came over from Nashville and made his debut with the Capitals on April 4, was down for several minutes and had to be helped off the ice with a lower body injury. He did not return and was to be re-evaluated.
The league's top power-play producers struck again with the man advantage just 43 seconds into the second period when Ribeiro was able to tuck in a loose puck after Markstrom made the initial save off a blistering slap shot by Mike Green from the high slot.
Washington made it 3-0 when Ovechkin maintained possession of the puck despite two poke-away attempts by Panthers' defenseman Filip Kuba and connected on a wrist shot past Markstrom.
Overckin then took a perfect feed from Marcus Johansson and sent his patented quick wrist shot past Markstrom for Washington's third power-play goal in five attempts.
Markstrom surrendered four goals on the Capitals' first 22 shots.
Niklas Backstrom added three assists for the Capitals. He leads the team in assists with 33.
BEST OF MAXIM
Alex Ovechkin has received a huge amount of criticism over the past few seasons. Most of this heat has stemmed from disappointment over the forward's inability to recapture the elite form we witnessed for the better part of five seasons. A lot of this criticism has been deserved as Ovechkin has looked lost on the ice, seemingly uninterested in giving it his all.
The Great 8 retweeted this childhood pic of who knows what yesterday:
@ovi8first team :-) twitter.com/kolyabinss/sta…
— Kolyabinss (@kolyabinss) April 4, 2013
Thankfully, Alex Ovetjkin was kind enough to zoom way in on young Ovi, wearing an American flag outfit even though this must’ve been taken in mid-’90s Russia.
Alex Ovetjkin has another picture taken that same day...
''Trust'' and ''respect'' have put Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals back on top.
That's how Ovechkin and Capitals coach Adam Oates describe it. A meeting of the minds between the first-time NHL head coach and the two-time league MVP - along with a position switch - has No. 8 putting up numbers like the Alexander the Great of old.
Harking back to his MVP days, Alex Ovechkin scored twice on Sunday to make it five goals in two games and the Washington Capitals got a 4-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Ovechkin scored his 24th and 25th goals - giving him 16 in 14 games - to pull even with the Lightning's Steven Stamkos for the top spot in the NHL.
John Carlson and Joel Ward also scored for the Capitals...
Even when Washington Capitals superstar Alexander Ovechkin was a wee lad in Moscow, his dreams of achieving great success on the international stage playing hockey caused his gaze to turn away from Mother Russia and instead directed his eyes far, far from the Motherland and instead towards the sparkling shores of the United States of America.
At least one can reasonably assume that...
Alex Ovechkin is playing a lot like he did during his two MVP seasons for the surging Washington Capitals.
The Tampa Bay Lightning are very familiar with the superstar left wing's scoring exploits.
Ovechkin looks to continue his home dominance of the Lightning on Sunday night, when he attempts to help the Capitals begin building a cushion atop the Southeast Division.
Alexander Ovechkin scored twice as the Washington Capitals doubled up the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-2 and took over sole possession of the Southeast Division lead with their fourth straight win. Vincent Lecavalier had a goal and an assist for Tampa in the loss.
SPIN: Ovechkin has rebounded nicely from his woeful start to tie Steven Stamkos for the league lead in goals with 25. Joel Ward...
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Harking back to his MVP days, Alex Ovechkin scored twice on Sunday to make it five goals in two games and the Washington Capitals got a 4-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Ovechkin scored his 24th and 25th goal -- giving him 16 in 14 games -- to pull even with the Lightning's Steven Stamkos for the top spot in the NHL.
John Carlson and Joel Ward also scored...
NEW YORK (April 8, 2013) – Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, St. Louis Blues goaltender Brian Elliott and New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the week ending April 7. Continue reading "Stars Of The Week"
Joel Ward celebrates his goal Sunday (TBT).
The Washington Capitals won yet another game on Sunday night, beating the Tampa Bay Lightning by a score of 4-2 inside Verizon Center for their fourth consecutive win. After falling behind twice, the Capitals got goals from Alex Ovechkin (twice), John Carlson, and Joel Ward to come back and top the Bolts. Michal Neuvirth...
What is it with these hockey players getting injured in practice? First we showed you the nasty scar on Alex Ovechkin aft…