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Chimera power-play goals help Capitals defeat Flyers

by Mike G. Morreale /

PHILADELPHIA -- Barry Trotz wasn't even coaching the Washington Capitals the last time Jason Chimera scored a power-play goal.

Trotz gave Chimera a significant role with the man-advantage Thursday, and the veteran forward rewarded his coach with two power-play goals and a game-high three points in a 5-2 victory against the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center.

"I don't even remember the last time I scored a power-play goal," Chimera said. "It was nice to fill in and do a good job."

Chimera had not scored a power-play goal since Jan. 31, 2014, at the Detroit Red Wings.

T.J. Oshie, Justin Williams and Nicklas Backstrom also scored for the Capitals (11-4-0), who have won three of their past four games. Goaltender Braden Holtby made 18 saves.

The Flyers (5-8-3), who have lost eight of their past nine games (1-7-1), got goals from Scott Laughton and Claude Giroux. Goalie Steve Mason, in his first start in five games, made 27 saves.

"I thought our net presence was much better," Trotz said. "We weren't playing that soft perimeter game, but getting into the inside and winning battles. As the game wore on, we won more battles and took over the game."

Said Chimera, "I thought we did a better job of getting people to the net, for sure. Our line was definitely getting those chances when [Williams] found the loose puck and put it in. We haven't had too many of those games with a good net presence."

Alex Ovechkin must wait at least another day to set the record for most goals by a Russian in NHL history after an apparent goal was overturned in the second period. He remains tied with Hockey Hall of Fame member Sergei Fedorov at 483 goals.

The Capitals host the Calgary Flames on Friday.

"It's probably fitting he gets a chance to do it in front of his own fans," Trotz said. "They've supported him all along, and I think it would be a nice thing for him to do it at home. Ovi is exceptional in that he's not rattled and he knows he'll get it. I said to him on the bench (after the disallowed goal) that it's probably fitting."

Washington scored three times in the second period, including goals 45 seconds apart by Chimera and Williams, to take a 4-2 lead.

With Flyers forward Michael Raffl in the penalty box for cross-checking, Chimera controlled a pass from Evgeny Kuznetsov down the middle of the ice before chipping the puck past Mason at 9:54 to pull the Capitals into a 2-2 tie. Williams knocked in a loose puck from the slot at 10:39 to give Washington a 3-2 lead.

Chimera scored his second of the game, fifth of the season, on a deflection at 17:27 to make it 4-2.

"Nobody expects Chimera to be that kind of guy (to score two power-play goals)," Ovechkin said. "He's always played hard for us. If he had a chance, I would think he's that kind of guy. He went to the net twice. [Kuznetsov] got in and went to the net again. He was excellent, and I hope he continues to play like that."

Ovechkin thought he passed Fedorov when he beat Mason on the power play with 38 seconds left in the second. Flyers coach Dave Hakstol used a challenge for the first time this season, and the goal was overturned after video replay showed that Williams was inside the blue line before Chimera skated the puck into the zone.

It was the second time in three games Ovechkin had a goal disallowed following a coach's challenge in which Williams was the culprit. What would have been career goal No. 484 was overturned for goalie interference by Williams in a 3-2 shootout victory against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.

"I think I'm up for the Selke Trophy; I'm shutting Ovi down pretty good right now," Williams said. "Two disallowed goals because of me. I want him to get it at home anyway, so that was the reason."

The overturned goal didn't faze the Capitals captain.

"Tomorrow is another game," Ovechkin said. "My family is going to be there. My brother, my fiancee, her parents, so it's going to be nice to score in front of our fans and hopefully win."

Chimera joked that Williams just wants to make it difficult on Ovechkin.

"I think two or three goals he took from Ovechkin now," he said. "He said anytime he's going to get a goal, he's going to take it away from him and make it tough. I don't think it's going to be too long before Ovi scores again, but [Williams] wants to do a good job keeping him off the score sheet."

Giroux gave the Flyers a 2-1 lead when he scored a power-play goal 1:07 into the second. He took a pass from Wayne Simmonds along the left-wing boards and beat Holtby on his left glove side with a shot from the far hash marks for his fifth goal.

"We came out and we had a good start, we competed hard through the night, but you make some mistakes against that team and it ends up in the back of your net, and they took advantage of that," Hakstol said.

Ovechkin credited the Capitals penalty kill, which denied the Flyers on 3-of-4 power-play opportunities.

"I think the first period we had lots of penalties, and that slowed our game down," Ovechkin said. "It was a great job by our PK guys."

Oshie scored his fifth goal 10:35 into the first to pull the Capitals into a 1-1 tie. Kuznetsov set up Oshie when he made a behind-the-back pass off his forehand just before curling the net at the right post.

Laughton scored his third goal 3:34 into the first to give the Flyers a 1-0 lead. The Flyers had just two shots on goal on their power plays.

"I don't think we're shooting the puck enough and we're turning down too many opportunities," Hakstol said. "Entering the zone and getting pucks to the net is something that we've got to do a better job of and something were talking about."

Trotz said defenseman Brooks Orpik, who missed the game with a lower-body injury, is day-to-day and could play Friday.


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