Beagle, Holtby help Caps roll
Washington’s Jay Beagle scored twice to lead the host Capitals to their eighth consecutive victory, a 6-0 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday night.
“We’re playing good hockey right now and we’re starting to get confident in our game, in our structure,” said Beagle, who has eight goals this season — two shy of his career high. “Getting these wins against great teams can only build that confidence, and we just got to keep going moving forward.”
Braden Holtby stopped 24 shots and got the benefit of goaltender interference on Vinne Hinostroza’s would-be goal for his fifth shutout in the team’s past 14 games. The Vezina Trophy winner is 9-2-2 with a 1.34 goals-against average and .950 save percentage in that time.
“I worked on a few things that I wanted to get better at, but we’ve been playing pretty well through that stretch, too,” said Holtby, who leads the league with six shutouts. “There’s still things to work on, but our game and my game are going in the right direction.”
Nicklas Backstrom, Brett Connolly, Tom Wilson and T.J. Oshie also scored for Washington, which snapped Chicago’s winning streak at four.
Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville called it a failure “across the board.”
“It was a big game to start with and we didn’t meet the challenge,” Quenneville said. “Let’s forget about this one because there’s nothing good about it.” Blue Jackets 3, Lightning 1:
Nick Foligno had a go-ahead power-play goal in the third period for visiting Columbus, which improved to 2-3 since it won 16 in a row. Joonas Korpisalo, playing in place of the ill Sergei Bobrovsky, made 31 saves for the Blue Jackets. Jonathan Drouin scored for Tampa Bay, which has lost five of six. Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 28 shots. Maple Leafs 4, Rangers 2:
Frederik Andersen stopped 34 shots to help visiting Toronto win for the seventh time in nine games. Left wings Rick Nash and Pavel Buchnevich were back in New York’s lineup. Nash missed eight games with a groin injury; Buchnevich had been out since Nov. 12 with a back injury. Islanders 5, Panthers 2:
John Tavares recorded his sixth career hat trick as visiting New York snapped a three-game losing streak. Vincent Trocheck had a goal and an assist for Florida. Hurricanes 5, Sabres 2:
Jeff Skinner had two goals and an assist and Brock McGinn also scored twice as Carolina improved to 13-1-1 in its past 15 home games. Cam Ward stopped 36 shots while playing in his 600th NHL game, all with the Hurricanes. Devils 2, Flames 1:
Kyle Palmieri had a goal and an assist to help visiting New Jersey snap a four-game skid. Keith Kinkaid stopped 31 shots while filling in for Devils starter Cory Schneider. New Jersey activated center Jacob Josefson from injured reserve. He missed six games because of illness. Coyotes 4, Jets 3:
Rookie Brendan Perlini scored two of his team’s four first-period goals and host Arizona held off Winnipeg. Oliver EkmanLarsson and Radim Vrbata each had three assists for the Coyotes. Briefly:
Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask, who left a game Thursday after a slap shot hit his face mask, practiced Friday . ... Predators defenseman Roman Josi (upper-body injury) and forward Colin Wilson (lower-body injury) were placed on injured reserve. Josi was hurt Thursday; Wilson was injured Jan. 6 . ... Jets rookie forward Patrik Laine was placed on IR because of a concussion suffered Jan. 7.