The Canadiens might have stolen a point on Thursday night in Washington, but Alexander Ovechkin stole the show. Ovechkin scored four goals, including the game winner in overtime as the Caps avenged their 4-0 defeat in Montreal two days ago with a 5-4 victory.
The Canadiens were able to overcome deficits of 3-0 and 4-2 to grab a point, but they had no answer for Ovechkin, who also assisted on Viktor Kozlov’s goal in the second period, giving him a five-point night. Ovechkin now has 43 goals on the season, tops in the NHL.
The Canadiens came out flat in this one and Oveckin made them pay. He got things going in the first period when he riffled a one-timer past Cristobal Huet while the teams were playing 4-on-4. Ovechkin was left all alone to Huet’s right and the French goaltender had no chance.
Kozlov made it 2-0 in the second period with a tap-in from in front of the net on a nice feed from Ovechkin, who added his second of the game a few minutes later when Kozlov returned the favour and sent Ovechkin in on Huet, beating him with a quick shot over the shoulder.
That’s when the Canadiens got things going. Sergei Kostitsyn scored his fifth of the season 13 minutes into the second period on a pass from Guillaume Latendresse. Andrei Kostitsyn made it 3-2 with a power-play goal with less than one second to play in the frame. It marked the first time brothers have scored in the same game for the Canadiens since 1974.
Ovechkin appeared to put the game away with his third of the game midway through the third period, but the Canadiens were not done yet.
Latendresse scored with a little more than six minutes to play to make the score 4-3 and he added his 14th of the season to tie the game with 33 seconds to play and force overtime.
Huet faced 38 shots, making 33 saves on the night. Capitals goaltender Olaf Kolzig had an easier night, but allowed four goals on 21 shots.
With the point for an overtime loss, the Habs moved within five points of the Ottawa Senators, who were 4-1 losers to the Boston Bruins.
The Canadiens return home to play back-to-back matinees on the weekend. The Islanders are in town on Saturday, while the Rangers come to the Bell Centre on Super Bowl Sunday.