NEWARK, N.J. — The Washington Capitals came up with two Great 8s against the New Jersey Devils.
Alex Ovechkin hit another milestone in his amazing career and the Capitals finished off a rare eight-game sweep of their season series with the Devils with a 5-4 win on Sunday.
Ovechkin scored his 265th power-play goal to move into a second-place tie with Brett Hull on the NHL’s all-time list in that category. He is 10 shy of passing all-time leader Dave Andreychuk (274).
Like most of his personal marks, he downplayed it.
“Keep going,” said the 35-year-old Russian who now has 725 goals, six goals shy of tying Marcel Dionne for fifth place all time in the NHL. “It is what it is.”
The Great 8 was more impressed with the sweep and the play of goaltender Ilya Samsonov, who had 35 saves in a game the Caps were outshot 39-19.
“I think Sammy today was unstoppable,” Ovechkin said. “Obviously he gave us the victory. ”
Caps coach Peter Laviolette said no one was thinking about a sweep at the start of the season.
“You hope to play somebody once and work hard and get one win and through the course of the year at the end of the year there will be a result,” he said. “But they’re a good young team.”
T.J. Oshie, Conor Sheary, Carl Hagelin and Evgeny Kuznetsov also scored for Washington. The eight-game sweep was the first in team history against a single opponent.
“He’s going to be a legend in the game,” said Devils defenseman Ryan Murray said of Ovechkin. “You know, it’s our job to shut him down. But, of course, you appreciate what he’s done over his career.”
New Jersey got within 3-2 late in the second period but the Caps scored twice early in the third to stretch the margin to 5-2. Bratt and Zajac got the Devils within a goal with 4:07 to play.
“I would say tonight we probably created the most opportunities we’ve had all year,” Devils coach Lindy Ruff said. “And at the end of the night, we didn’t win a game.”
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