Alex Ovechkin scores 790th goal, Capitals hit flyers in OT ( News Washington )


WASHINGTON – Alex Ovechkin believed the Washington Capitals were always in the game against the Philadelphia Flyers despite trailing. So when he got the puck on his stick in overtime on a perfect pass from Dylan Strome, the best goal-scorer of this generation knew what he had to do.

“I just hit the net,” Ovechkin said. “Finally, you know?”

Ovechkin did just that, scoring the 790th goal of his NHL career to give the Capitals a 3-2 comeback victory on Wednesday night and snap a four-game losing streak. His 25th OT winner in nearly 1,300 regular season games.

“We just kept pushing and pushing,” Ovechkin said after 11 moved behind Gordie Howe for second on his career goalscoring list. “We’re struggling, in a tough spot, but we’re fighting through it.”

The Capitals were on their way to losing five in a row before Sonny Milano hit Felix Sandstrom on a layup with 2:58 left in regulation. The play was close from the sideline, but Philadelphia coach John Tortorella didn’t challenge Washington’s tying goal after deciding it was ons.

Ovechkin scored 1:04 into OT, lifting the Capitals for the first time this season in a game that went past regulation. Sandstrom has scored 164 goals against a different NHL goaltender, tying Mark Messier for third most in that category.

“Good,” Ovechkin deadpanned.

The Flyers dropped their eighth game in a row, falling 1-0 and 2-1 on soft goals by Morgan Frost and Patrick Brown to stop Washington’s Darcy Kuemper.

“We call the quarry: they have bad intentions,” said Kuemper, who saves with 21. “For guys, I like this way a lot.”

Sandstrom was outstanding in making 29 saves, but his play wasn’t enough to earn Philadelphia its first win since Nov. 8.

“Some guys, it’s just that they can’t think, just wanting to win – almost expecting to lose,” Tortorella said. “I think that happens with some guys. Other parts of the game, it’s execution.”

Marcus Johansson scored Washington’s power play goal not long after one was disallowed to kick the puck into the net. Johansson’s goal was initially credited to Ovechkin before his Swedish teammate showed his gratitude by touching the puck before it crossed the goal line.

Each team was hampered in the game by several player injuries that depleted their depth and was one of the reasons they lost so late.

The Flyers added Travis Konecny ​​and Scott Laughton to their list of absences that already included James van Riemsdyk, Sean Couturier and Cam Atkinson. The Capitals once again missed Tom Wilson and Nicklas Backstrom, who are recovering from offseason surgeries, along with defenseman Dmitry Orlov for the eighth consecutive game.

Washington winger TJ Oshie returned after missing 11 games last season with what the team called an upper body injury and played with reckless abandon, throwing his body around early and often.

“It was nice to play with him,” Milano said. “He’s so skilled and strong on the puck and brings a lot of energy.”

Flyers: Hosts at crosstown rival Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday afternoon.

Capitals: Host Serbia in Calgary on Friday afternoon.

Follow AP Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at

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