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Jones, Sharks shut out Capitals without Ovechkin

by Katie Brown

WASHINGTON -- Martin Jones didn't have to worry about Alex Ovechkin. The San Jose Sharks goalie had no problem with the rest of the Washington Capitals.

Jones made 31 saves in a 5-0 win at Verizon Center on Tuesday, his second consecutive shutout.

The Capitals played without their captain Ovechkin, who missed the game for personal reasons.

"You can't really replace guys like that, but for us, we were just worried about our game," Jones said. "It didn't really matter who was in the lineup. I thought we did a really good job executing, and when we did get the lead, we were really strong defensively."

Jones and the Sharks are undefeated through three games. He has not allowed a goal since Oct. 7, when the Los Angeles Kings scored on their first shot of the game in the season opener.

The Capitals were also without center Nicklas Backstrom, who is expected to miss at least two more games as he recovers from offseason hip surgery.

"They have a lot of depth, and the biggest mistake we could make was play differently because those guys aren't here," Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. "We have a lot of respect for the depth on that team, and I really thought the second part of the game they pushed us really hard once we had the 3-0 lead."

Joe Thornton, Mike Brown, Tomas Hertl, Matt Nieto and Chris Tierney scored for the Sharks. Jones, traded to San Jose by the Boston Bruins this offseason, has stopped 77 consecutive shots.

Braden Holtby made 27 saves for the Capitals (1-1-0).

Washington coach Barry Trotz said San Jose's speed didn't allow the Capitals to control the game the way they would have liked, which frustrated them.

"We wanted to make plays and play slow, but they don't allow you to because they track back really hard," Trotz said. "You have to get pucks behind them, and I think probably after the -- it was the third goal -- I called timeout halfway through the game. The second half we were better. We weren't great, but we were better. We were starting to understand that the way we get our identity is that if there is a play, make the play."

Thornton scored on the second of San Jose's three power plays in the first period to give the Sharks a 1-0 lead at 10:54. Defenseman Brent Burns took a wrist shot from the point, which Thornton tipped over Holtby's blocker. Thornton has two goals in the three games.

"First period was excellent, with the traveling and the first game of the road trip," Sharks captain Joe Pavelski said. "We wanted to get off to a good start and we did. We laid a lot of pucks in, got a lot of pucks back. Obviously, getting a couple of power plays early allowed us to get that momentum. It's good to see."

Brown scored to make it 2-0 at 2:36 of the second period. He snapped a 49-game scoreless streak dating to Dec. 3, 2013.

Washington defenseman Nate Schmidt and forward Justin Williams got caught in transition, allowing Tierney to take the initial shot, an attempt that was blocked. Brown picked up the rebound and sent a wrist shot past Holtby for his 18th NHL goal. Brown has 32 points in 352 NHL games.

Hertl gave the Sharks a 3-0 lead at 7:25 of the second period. Holtby made a pad save on Tommy Wingels from the slot and the Sharks again capitalized on the rebound. This time it was Hertl, who sent a wrist shot past Holtby for his 30th NHL goal.

DeBoer used his coach's challenge to successfully overturn a goal by Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov at 9:39 of the third period. Forward Jay Beagle interfered with Jones during the play.

It would have been Orlov's first NHL goal since March 2, 2014.

"We were frustrating ourselves with our own play in the first part, and then we started getting a little momentum, and you're hoping that goal [helps] and [that] you're sort of able to grab onto something, and we weren't able to," Trotz said. "They called it back, and it wasn't a goal. So we had to mentally get going again and playing."

Trotz pulled Holtby with 3:45 remaining, and the Sharks scored two empty-net goals.

"We said if we're going to go down, we're going to go down swinging," Trotz said. "So I like that fact that there is no quit in the room."

Nieto and Tierney scored in the final two minutes.

"We got great depth contributions tonight," DeBoer said. "That's part of having a deep lineup is different nights you get different lines that are contributing, and that's a key to any team having success in this league."

San Jose killed four Washington power plays and is 11-for-11 this season.

Washington defenseman John Carlson played his 400th NHL game. Capitals forward Stanislav Galiev made his season debut.

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