After getting dealt a decisive loss to begin the season, Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals will try to rebound when they host the Winnipeg Jets in the home opener at the Verizon Center.
The Capitals played Saturday in Tampa and were dealt a 6-3 setback by the Lightning. The score was tied at 3-3 heading into the third period, but Tampa Bay dominated the final 20 minutes to earn the victory over its Southeast Division rivals.
Washington outshot the Lightning by a 17-8 margin in the first period, but the Bolts led that category 26-13 over the final two stanzas.
Joel Ward netted a pair of goals in the loss and Wojtek Wolski added another tally for Washington. Braden Holtby allowed all six Tampa goals on 34 shots to spoil the coaching debut of recent Hall of Fame inductee Adam Oates.
"I don't fault Holts at all on the goals," Oates said of his young netminder. "I think it was more all of us."
Ovechkin fired four shots on net for Washington, but did not register a point. The two-time Hart Trophy winner is coming off a career-low 65 points in 2011- 12.
Washington had an excellent 26-11-4 record in D.C. last season and the Capitals are 10-0 in their last 10 home openers. The club last lost a home opener on Oct. 6, 2000 against Los Angeles.
Like Washington, the Jets will also aim for their first win of the shortened season on Tuesday. Winnipeg is 0-1-1 after dropping a home test to Ottawa on Saturday and losing a shootout decision Monday afternoon in Boston.
The Bruins and Jets were tied at 1-1 after a goal by Boston's Brad Marchand late in the first period and the score stayed deadlocked until Patrice Bergeron's second-round shootout goal lifted the home club to the 2-1 victory.
Bergeron fired the puck behind Winnipeg goalie Ondrej Pavelec. Tuukka Rask then turned away the Jets' Olli Jokinen, and Boston prevailed when Bryan Little hit the far post. It was the 11th straight loss in Boston for the Jets/Thrashers franchise.
Chris Thorburn scored the lone goal for Winnipeg, while Pavelec made 26 saves.
The Jets are ending a two-game swing in Washington and will play their next two tests at home against Pittsburgh and the New York Islanders.
Winnipeg won four of six meetings against the Capitals in 2011-12, including the final three encounters. Washington also has lost three of its last four home tilts against the Jets.