NHL Game Summary - Washington at Philadelphia
(Wednesday, February 6th)
Final Score: Washington 4, Philadelphia 3
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Alex Ovechkin scored his league-leading 46th goal as Washington used a huge third period rally on its way to a 4-3 victory over Philadelphia at the Wachovia Center.
Brooks Laich, Matt Bradley and Viktor Kozlov also tallied for the Caps, who have moved atop the Southeast Division, one point ahead of idle Carolina and Atlanta. Olaf Kolzig also had a strong night between the pipes, turning aside 31 shots, as Washington picked up its second straight victory and won for the 10th time in its last 14 games overall.
Mike Knuble, Sami Kapanen and Randy Jones each lit the lamp, and Martin Biron made 23 saves for the Flyers, who had a two-game winning streak broken and remain locked in a battle for the top spot in the Atlantic Division. Philadelphia opened the night two points ahead of New Jersey and idle Pittsburgh, and maintained that edge as the Devils fell to Buffalo, 3-2, in a shootout on Wednesday night.
Ron Hextall became the 19th member of the organization to be inducted into the Flyers Hall of Fame during an on-ice ceremony held during the first intermission. Hextall appeared in 489 regular season games during his 11-year Flyers career, posting a 240-172-58 record and 2.91 goals-against average. His 489 games played and 240 wins as a Flyer rank him first all-time in Flyers history.
With the game tied heading to the third, Mike Green helped put the Capitals back on top when his shot was deflected in front by Bradley. The disc took a big hop and sailed over Biron's left shoulder at 2:01.
Then, a little more than a minute later, Kozlov pounced on a Flyers turnover and from the left circle, wristed the puck past Biron and into the far side of the cage.
Ovechkin capped the rally, and made it 4-1, when he stuffed his own rebound past the outstretched leg of Biron at 7:45. It was Ovechkin's 46th tally and gives him 73 points overall. The Russian-born superstar has seven goals in his last four games and 12 goals and nine assists in only 12 games lifetime versus Philadelphia.
Kapanen's goal, which came with 6:10 remaining, brought the Flyers within two, and Jones made it a one-goal game on a power-play marker with 53.7 seconds remaining. The Flyers, though, couldn't net the equalizer as they failed to generate pressure the rest of the way.
"It looked like we lacked energy," said Flyers head coach John Stevens. "We got down and we almost had a sense of urgency. We got one goal and then we decided, hey, let's hang around and see what happens. There wasn't a whole lot going on at either end for quite a while there, and all the sudden we had a lapse in the third period. Before you knew it, the puck was in our net a few times and we were chasing the hockey game."
Both sides played to a scoreless first period, but it didn't take long for the Caps to jump on top in the second. Just 2:31 in, Laich exploded up the middle and beat Biron with a backhand shot during four-aside hockey. Biron went down into the butterfly position, but the puck sailed over his glove and snuck just inside the right post, giving Washington a 1-0 lead.
Knuble, however, continued his red-hot run and tied the game with a power-play tally late in the stanza. Knuble positioned himself in front of two defenseman just along the rim of the crease, and quickly pounded home a feed from Daniel Briere with 3:39 remaining, making it 2-2. It was his fifth goal in the last three games, and seventh in the last seven games overall.
The Flyers had a goal disallowed early in the third...Hextall was the first inductee into the Flyers Hall of Fame since Dave Poulin in 2004...Ovechkin tied his goal total from all of last season...Philadelphia lost the services of right wing Scottie Upshall, who suffered a high ankle sprain in the second period when he was hit along the boards by Ovechkin...Washington has won four straight visits to Philadelphia after going 0-15 with a tie in its previous 16 stops in the City of Brotherly Love.
02/07 00:07:06 ET