Capitals rally to beat Ducks 5-4 in overtime
WASHINGTON – Nicklas Backstrom scored the tying goal with 42 seconds left in regulation, then added the game-winner at 2:18 of overtime to lift the Washington Capitals to a 5-4 comeback victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday night.
The Capitals trailed 3-0 in the second period and 4-2 with 10:47 left in regulation before rallying. It was 4-3 when Washington pulled goaltender Tomas Vokoun in the final minute, and Backstrom hammered home the rebound of a shot by Jason Chimera to force the extra session.
In overtime, Backstrom was standing to the right of the net when Alex Ovechkin sent the puck toward goalie Jonas Hiller. Anaheim defenseman Toni Lydman let the puck slip past his stick, and Backstrom scored easily to end it.
Washington improved to 6-0 at home and ended a two-game skid.
Teemu Selanne had two goals and two assists for the Ducks, who have lost three straight. Hiller stopped 35 shots.
Now in his 20th season, the 41-year-old Selanne leads the Ducks in goals (five) and assists (nine). He has three goals and eight assists in his last six games.
Anaheim was averaging two goals per game and had been held to one goal or fewer in five of its first 11 contests. The Ducks took only 15 shots, but more than a quarter of them made it past Vokoun.
Joel Ward, Dennis Wideman and Troy Brouwer scored for the Capitals, who remained unbeaten in the United States following losses at Edmonton and Vancouver.
The Ducks went up 1-0 at 9:05 of the first period when Selanne skated behind the goal and sent a centering pass to Saku Koivu, who eluded defenseman Roman Hamrlik and beat Vokoun from the left side.
Selanne and Koivu teamed again 4½ minutes later to make it 2-0. Koivu corralled Lydman's shot off the back boards and sent it across the crease to Selanne, who scored from the left side of the net.
Selanne made it 3-0 with a slap shot at 8:59 of the second period, but the Capitals got back into it when Ward and Wideman scored just over three minutes apart. Ward drilled a wrist shot through the Hiller's pads, and Wideman scored after Hiller botched an attempt to clear a puck that was sent the length of the ice by Vokoun.
Corey Perry got a power-play goal for Anaheim at 9:13 of the third period for a 4-2 lead.
NOTES: It was the only game of the season between the teams. ... Capitals D Mike Green missed a third straight game because of a twisted right ankle, but D John Erskine made his season debut after being sidelined following shoulder surgery. ... The Capitals recalled C Cody Eakin from Hershey of the AHL and assigned D Sean Collins to the same club. ... Anaheim still has two games left in a 13-day, seven-game road trip that ends Saturday in Detroit.