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(Thursday, February 7th)
Final Score: Pittsburgh 5, Washington 2
Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin each posted a goal and two assists as a big second period led Pittsburgh to a 5-2 win over Washington.
James Neal posted a goal and an assist while Pascal Dupuis and Matt Cooke each lit the lamp for the Penguins, who have won five consecutive games. Marc-Andre Fleury posted 23 saves in the win.
"We did a lot of good things and sometimes you get the results you want," said Crosby. "We're just playing with a lot of confidence right now and believing that we can do just about anything."
Alex Ovechkin and Mike Ribeiro each notched a goal and a helper for the Capitals, who have dropped three straight and five of six.
Michal Neuvirth gave up two goals on 11 shots before being pulled in the second period. Braden Holtby allowed three tallies on 17 shots in relief.
Washington got the only goal of the first period when a shot by Tomas Kundratek at the right point hit a Pen in front and Ribeiro tapped it in at the 4:12 mark.
The second period, though, was dominated by the Penguins.
Skating on the power play, Pittsburgh tied the game at the 6:59 mark. Paul Martin sent a pass from the high slot over to the right circle where Crosby one-touched the pass over to the right and Malkin snapped it into the far corner.
It took nearly six minutes for the next goal to come, but that one gave the Pens the lead as Crosby brought the puck in through the middle, left a drop pass over to the left and Dupuis whacked the rolling puck past Neuvirth.
That prompted a goalie changed as Holtby took over between the pipes, but things got worse for the Capitals.
Less than four minutes later, Chris Kunitz sent a pass from the top of the left circle to the bottom where Neal was behind the defense and he cut to the front before slipping a backhander in for another power-play goal.
Exactly 11 seconds after that goal, Brandon Sutter won a left circle faceoff back to Cooke, who blasted a one-timer over the glove of Holtby for a 4-1 lead.
The Pens weren't done scoring in the frame and got a fifth goal with 21.2 seconds showing for a third power-play goal. Malkin blasted a shot on net from the right circle that got behind the goaltender and Crosby tapped it in out of the air for his fifth of the season and a 5-1 advantage.
"We had that early lead then we stopped playing," said Ovechkin. "You know, we took a bunch of stupid penalties and they killed us with it."
Ovechkin scored on a wrister from the left circle while on the man advantage at the 8:34 mark of the third, but Washington was unable to get any closer the rest of the way.
Pittsburgh plays in New Jersey on Saturday ... Washington hosts Florida for the front end of a home-and-home on Saturday ... Each team won twice in the series last season ... Washington was 1-for-2 on the power play while Pittsburgh went 3-for-4.
02/08 00:22:32 ET
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