Ovechkin scores 27th goal, Capitals beat Jets in overtime

Jan 18, 2022, 5:00 AM | Updated: 7:42 pm
Washington Capitals right wing Tom Wilson celebrates after scoring a game-winning goal in front of ...

Washington Capitals right wing Tom Wilson celebrates after scoring a game-winning goal in front of Winnipeg Jets defenseman Josh Morrissey (44), goaltender Connor Hellebuyck (37) and left wing Kyle Connor (81) in an overtime period of an NHL hockey game, Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022, in Washington. Washington won 4-3 in overtime. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Alex Ovechkin fumed after he thought the referees missed a penalty call and screamed obscenities from the bench after watching the replay.

On his very next shift, he scored his NHL-leading 27th goal of the season to spark a comeback and help the Washington Capitals beat the Winnipeg Jets 4-3 in overtime Tuesday night. It took a power move from Evgeny Kuznetsov to set up Tom Wilson’s winner and give the Capitals their first 3-on-3 OT win of the season, but of course, their longtime captain and MVP candidate at age 36 was responsible for getting the rally going.

“He comes to play every night, and we can always rely on him,” defenseman Justin Schultz said. “He goes out there and does everything he can to help us, and you knew we didn’t get off to a great start. That goal he scored was huge for us.”

Ovechkin’s anger started when the Capitals fell behind by two goals less than three minutes in. He became livid after no penalty was called on Jets defenseman Josh Morrissey for hooking him and let the officials know about it.

The Russian superstar scored on his next shot, firing the puck past 2020 Vezina Trophy-winning goaltender Connor Hellebuyck on a 2-on-1 rush. With the goal, Ovechkin broke a tie atop the NHL with Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl.

Ovechkin’s 757th goal was also his 1,375th point, putting him ahead of Mike Modano for 24th on the career scoring list.

Dmitry Orlov tied it in the second, and rookie Aliaksei Protas put the Capitals ahead in the third with a wraparound goal, banking the puck off former Washington defenseman Nate Schmidt and Hellebuyck and in. Pierre-Luc Dubois tied it for the Jets with 1:05 left, and Wilson scored 26 seconds into overtime.

The Capitals had lost their previous seven games decided in OT.

“It is something we were trying to fix and work on, and it is nice when you get the first one,” Wilson said. “Hopefully we can turn it around.”

Starter Vitek Vanecek was stellar after the rough start that was more an indictment of the play in front of him than him in net. He stopped Andrew Copp on a breakaway later in the first period and made three saves on point-blank chances on a Capitals penalty kill late in the second with the score tied at 2.

Vanecek finished with 30 saves on 33 shots after allowing two goals on the first four attempts put on net.

“He bailed us out,” coach Peter Laviolette said. “I thought that he battled hard tonight and did a good job for us.”

Kyle Connor scored 62 seconds in on the power play, and Cole Perfetti followed not long after with his first NHL goal on a 2-on-1 rush. Connor and Perfetti scoring twice in the first 2:20 is the third-fastest two-goal start in Jets/Atlanta Thrashers franchise history.

No one has scored more against the Jets/Thrashers than Ovechkin, who now has 50 goals and 49 assists in 69 games against them. He became the second player in NHL history to score 50 or more goals against a franchise that debuted after 1979, joining Hall of Famer Teemu Selanne, who did so against the San Jose Sharks.

While the Capitals won for just the second time in seven games, the Jets have lost four of five. Washington extended its home winning streak against Winnipeg to nine, dating to April 13, 2013 when the teams played in the Southeast Division.

“We did a lot of things right, but look at the team that you’re playing,” Jets interim coach Dave Lowry said. “They’ve got a bunch of world-class All-Stars on their team and they’re not going to go away. They got their legs under them. They took the game over.”

NOTES: Winnipeg’s Nikolai Ehlers was injured late in regulation after a knee-on-knee hit from Orlov. Lowry said Ehlers would miss at least one game. … The Capitals were without top defenseman John Carlson and winger Conor Sheary (COVID-19 protocol) and forward T.J. Oshie (upper-body injury) for a second consecutive game. … Assistant coach Scott Arniel was not behind the bench after going into protocol. … Jets captain Blake Wheeler took part in the team’s morning skate and appears to be nearing a return. Wheeler has not played since Dec. 10 because of a lower-body injury.


Jets: Visit the Nashville Predators on Thursday.

Capitals: Visit the Boston Bruins on Thursday.


Follow AP Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SWhyno


More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Baltimore Orioles' Anthony Santander rounds the bases on his two-run home run during the seventh in...
Associated Press

Orioles bash Red Sox 14-8, slice AL wild-card deficit

BOSTON (AP) — Cedric Mullins homered on the second pitch of the game, Anthony Santander went deep twice and the Baltimore Orioles outslugged the Boston Red Sox 14-8 on Monday night to gain a little ground in the playoff race. Gunnar Henderson hit a two-run homer and Mullins tripled in two runs for the Orioles […]
22 hours ago
Dallas Cowboys wide receiver CeeDee Lamb (88) makes a catch in the end zone for a touchdown against...
Associated Press

Lamb’s 1-handed TD catch gives Dallas 23-16 win over Giants

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — CeeDee Lamb was angry with himself in the second quarter after dropping a wide-open pass and costing the Dallas Cowboys a possible touchdown. It was just embarrassing. The star Cowboys receiver more than made up for it with the game on the line, making a one-handed TD catch with 8:30 […]
22 hours ago
New York Yankees designated hitter Aaron Judge reacts after flying out against Boston Red Sox start...
Associated Press

Yankees star Judge stays 1 homer shy of Maris’ AL mark of 61

A look at Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees as he approaches major home run milestones: Season HR Total: 60 Monday’s Game: Went 1 for 3 with two walks in a 3-2 loss in 10 innings at Toronto. Judge has gone six games without a home run and remains short of the AL record […]
22 hours ago
New York Yankees' Aaron Judge tosses his bat as he is walked by Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher ...
Associated Press

Judge held homerless, still at 60, Jays beat Yankees in 10th

TORONTO (AP) — Aaron Judge and the New York Yankees will have to wait at least one more day to achieve home run history and crack some bubbly. Judge stayed at 60 home runs, one shy of Roger Maris’ American League record, and the Yankees’ bid to clinch the AL East stalled when Vladimir Guerrero […]
22 hours ago
Pittsburgh Pirates' Miguel Andujar (26) and Oneil Cruz (15) celebrate after scoring on a double by ...
Associated Press

Suwinski double keys 4-run 7th, Pirates beat Reds 8-3

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Jack Suwinski hit a two-run double to key a four-run seventh inning, powering the Pittsburgh Pirates past the Cincinnati Reds 8-3 on Monday night. Suwinski turned on a slider from Derek Law (2-1), sending it to right field. Fellow rookie Oneil Cruz, who opened the inning with his third of four straight […]
22 hours ago
Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Bryce Elder, right, celebrates with catcher William Contreras, left...
Associated Press

Elder shuts out Nationals 8-0; Braves within 1 game of Mets

WASHINGTON (AP) — Bryce Elder threw a six-hit shutout for his first career complete game, and the Atlanta Braves defeated Washington 8-0 Monday night to close within one game of the first-place New York Mets in the NL East and hand the Nationals their 100th loss of the season. Matt Olson and Orlando Arcia hit […]
22 hours ago
Ovechkin scores 27th goal, Capitals beat Jets in overtime