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NHL Capsules

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WASHINGTON (AP) -Alex Ovechkin scored another spectacular, how-did-he-do-that goal while sliding on the ice, helping the Washington Capitals to a 4-3 shootout win over the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday night.

Hooked and jabbed off his skates as he headed toward the net, the league's reigning MVP slid on his right side toward the crease and had the presence of mind to poke the puck under the right pad of Montreal goaltender Carey Price.

Alexander Semin and Nicklas Backstrom scored in the shootout for the Capitals, while goaltender Jose Theodore clinched the victory by stopping shots from Tomas Plekanec and Andrei Markov.

The Canadiens took a 3-2 lead on Plekanec's power play goal with 11:03 remaining in regulation, but the Capitals forced overtime when David Steckel deflected Tom Poti's shot into the net with 2:39 to play.

The goal was in the same league as Ovechkin's sliding, stick-behind-the-head score against the Phoenix Coyotes on Jan. 16, 2006.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Steve Mason made 21 saves - none bigger than a key stop in the closing seconds - to lead Columbus six games over .500 for the first time in the team's eight-year history.

The victory lifted Columbus into a tie for fifth in the Western Conference with Vancouver, both with 64 points. The Blue Jackets (29-23-6), who have never made the playoffs, have 11 points in their last six games.

Rick Nash, Manny Malhotra and Fedor Tyutin each had a goal and an assist. Andrew Murray also scored for Columbus.

Brad Winchester, Alex Steen and T.J. Oshie had goals for St. Louis, which had won both meetings this season and the last five in the series. The Blues scored two third-period goals to cut the lead to one and make the final few minutes interesting.

DETROIT (AP) - Nicklas Lidstrom and Johan Franzen each had two goals and an assist and the Detroit Red Wings got five power-play goals to beat the Nashville Predators 6-2 Wednesday night.

Henrik Zetterberg and Jiri Hudler added a goal and as assist each for Detroit, which broke a two-game losing streak. Ty Conklin made 23 saves.

Steve Sullivan scored his first two goals in two years to account for Nashville's offense. Dan Ellis stopped 35 shots.

NEW YORK (AP) - Scott Gomez's power-play goal in the second period snapped a tie and gave the Rangers and coach Tom Renney a much-needed win.

The Rangers certainly didn't break out of their offensive funk, nor did they cure their power-play ills, but they did enough against their biggest rival to earn their second win in 10 games (2-6-2).

Nigel Dawes scored in the first period, Fredrik Sjostrom added an empty-netter, and Henrik Lundqvist made 25 saves and earned an assist for the Rangers, who began the night in a four-way tie for fifth place in the Eastern Conference. Chris Drury had three assists.

Because the Rangers never trailed, there were no repeated calls for the firings of Renney and general manager Glen Sather as there were Sunday at Madison Square Garden during a lackluster 5-2 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers.

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