Capitals continue their mastery over the Bruins
Ovechkin nets two, Backstrom bags go-ahead goal in third
Caps 4 — Bruins 2
BOSTON (AP) — Nicklas Backstrom scored in the third period after missing a game, helping the Washington Capitals win their 14th straight over the Boston Bruins with a 4-2 victory Thursday night.
Backstrom, who sat out Wednesday’s game against Philadelphia with an illness, glided in to the Bruins’ zone and ripped a left-circle wrister past Jaroslav Halak for the go-ahead goal with 14:14 remaining.
Alexander Ovechkin netted his NHL-leading 31st and 32nd goals of the season, and also had the highlight hit of the game when he sent Zdeno Chara — the NHL’s tallest player ever at 6-foot-9 — flipping head over heels into the Capitals’ bench on a shove late in the first period.
The TD Garden crowd gasped, but play continued and there was no immediate onice retaliation. The Bruins captain tumbled back onto the ice quickly and rejoined the play.
Jakub Vrana also had a goal for the Capitals, whose streak against the Bruins dates to March 29, 2014.
Ryan Donato and David Krejci each had goals for Boston. The Bruins suffered a season-opening 7-0 blowout loss at Washington on Oct. 3 when the Capitals celebrated last season’s Stanley Cup title.
Braden Holtby made 39 saves, improving to 12-0-0 against Boston during the Capitals’ streak, and 16-2 in his career against the Bruins.
Halak had 18 saves for Boston, which had its five-game win streak snapped.
Washington led 1-0 after the first
Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara gets is checked into the Washington bench by Alex Ovechkin, left, during Thursday night’s first period.