Alexander Ovechkin and Andre Burakovsky each scored twice Sunday night as the Washington Capitals defeated the Anaheim Ducks 5-3.
Marcus Johansson’s 14th of the season at 3:27 of the second period stood to be the game winner.
Ovechkin, who also assisted on Burakovsky’s two goals, now has a league-leading 36 on the season passing Rangers’ forward Rick Nash.
Not everyone was impressed with Ovechkin’s four-point night.
Ovechkin and Ryan Getzlaf had a run-in on the ice during the first period. Post-game Getzlaf had some choice words for the Washington captain.
“I didn’t know he was going to dive the way he did tonight,” said Getzlaf per the L.A. Times’ Helene Elliott. “All over the [expletive] ice. That part of it is a little embarrassing. Pardon my language. He’s a great player.
“He’s going to score goals and make plays. That other stuff’s embarrassing.”
Trotz has shown no types of tolerance for diving, calling out others for it. Doesn't talk until Tuesday, but curious to hear his response.
Saturday night’s game against the Arizona Coyotes was an even contest through 40 minutes, but the New York Rangers found another level in the third period to storm to a 5-1 victory.
That late game rally handed Rangers coach Alain Vigneault his 500th career win. He’s the 21st bench boss to ever reach that mark and is tied with Toe Blake. He also needs just one more victory to reach Pat Burns. Vigneault, 53, is playing in his second season with New York after previously serving with Montreal and Vancouver.
Chris Kreider, Rick Nash, Kevin Hayes, Marc Staal, and Lee Stempniak each found the back of the net for the Rangers, although Hayes’ shorthanded goal is particularly noteworthy given the angle he fired that at:
Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith stopped just 27 of 32 shots and he now has a 3.27 GAA and .896 save percentage in 41 contests this season.
The Rangers have won nine of their last 13 contests to thrust themselves into contention for the Metropolitan Division title. They’re still trailing the New York Isalnders (who also won tonight) by four points though.
Jimmy Howard will make his first start since Jan. 10 tonight when the Detroit Red Wings play host to the Winnipeg Jets. Howard missed 10 games with a groin injury. He made four saves in relief of Petr Mrazec on Wednesday night in Pittsburgh. Howard is 16-7-7 with a 2.09 G.A.A. and a .920 save percentage this season.
Michael Hutchinson is expected to start for the Jets.
Maple Leafs at Canadiens: Jonathan Bernier vs. Carey Price
Blue Jackets at Islanders: Anton Forsberg vs. Jaroslav Halak
Rangers at Coyotes: Cam Talbot vs. Mike Smith
Hurricanes at Wild: Anton Khudobin vs. Devan Dubnyk
Devils at Predators: Cory Schneider vs. Pekka Rinne
Stars at Avalanche: Jhonas Enroth vs. Semyon Varlamov
Canucks at Flames: Ryan Miller vs. Karri Ramo
Capitals at Kings: Braden Holtby vs. Jonathan Quick
Struggling St. Louis admits he’s not playing with confidence
New York Rangers forward Martin St. Louis had a strong first half to the 2014-15 campaign, but he’s been on the decline lately. The 39-year-old hasn’t found the back of the net since Jan. 10 and has just one assist in his last nine games.
“I’m not playing with a lot of confidence right now,” St. Louis conceded, per the New York Post. “I’ve gone through stretches like this before, and it’s not a fun place to be, but fortunately the team is winning.
“Sometimes the game gets hard. Sometimes life gets hard. There’s only one way to get through it, and that’s by keeping your head up and continuing to work.”
St. Louis hasn’t just struggled offensively lately, he also made a key mistake that resulted in a goal from Jarome Iginla last night:
The Colorado Avalanche tied the game at 3-3 shortly after that goal, but the Rangers still went on to win 6-3. However, St. Louis was barely used after that mistake.
“I’m very disappointed with that mistake. You never want to make a mistake that leads to a goal,” St. Louis said. “But I’m going to do whatever it takes to try and get it together.
“The team is winning, so that helps you buy time to find your game.”
He still ranks third on the team with 37 points in 53 contests.