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game recap

Capitals defeat Penguins to give Holtby 200th win

Score three in row to make goalie second fastest to mark

by Brian McNally / NHL.com Correspondent

WASHINGTON -- Washington Capitals goalie Braden Holtby made 27 saves in his 200th NHL win, 4-1 against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Capital One Arena on Friday.

Holtby became the second-fastest goalie in NHL history win 200 games, reaching it in 319 games, 10 more than Ken Dryden of the Montreal Canadiens, who earned his 200th win in his 309th game, on Nov. 16, 1977.

"Obviously, it's an honor to be in the same sentence as him," Holtby said. "But I think with him and me that those teams that we've been fortunate to play on helped you get there. That's just luck in some ways. It's been a fun time to get to 200 and we move forward now."

 

[WATCH: All Penguins vs. Capitals highlights]

 

John Carlson and T.J. Oshie scored on the power play for the Capitals (9-7-1), who have won four of their past five. Chandler Stephenson and Jakub Vrana scored third-period goals.

"We're getting better and better every game," Holtby said. "Tonight was a strong effort in a lot of areas. It's a good sign showing that we're maturing as a group and we still need to push forward."

Phil Kessel scored for the Penguins (9-7-2), and Matt Murray made 27 saves. Pittsburgh has lost two of three.

Carlson scored at 14:09 of the first period to put Washington ahead 1-0. He shot from the top of the right circle and beat Murray blocker side with Oshie and Backstrom setting screens in front.

"We were a little nastier around the net. I think we had a lot more quality grinding it out in front when the pucks get there," Carlson said. "That takes a toll. We move the puck so well, it's easy to count on seam passes for one-timers and stuff, but sometimes that threat of clogging it up in the middle and those second-chance opportunities are big too."

Kessel tied it 1-1 at 8:26 of the second period. His pass in front was deflected in by Washington defenseman Dmitry Orlov.

Video: PIT@WSH: Carlson rips a one-timer home for a PPG

The Capitals took a 2-1 lead at 18:09. Penguins defenseman Kris Letang was called for high-sticking and cross-checking Oshie. With one second left on the four-minute power play, Oshie tipped in Carlson's point shot.

"We did such a good job on different kills, and even that four-minute PK we did a really good job," Pittsburgh center Sidney Crosby said. "Tough to see one go in late in that power play."

It was Oshie's seventh goal of the season but first in nine games. He hadn't scored since Oct. 20 against the Detroit Red Wings. 

Backstrom ended a seven-game pointless streak also dating to Oct. 20. He got the primary assist on Stephenson's goal at 13:42 that made it 3-1 of the third with a backhand pass from behind the net with his back to the play. Vrana made it 4-1 at 17:18 with an empty-net goal. 

Washington's power play was 2-for-6. Pittsburgh was 0-for-4, including consecutive power plays early in the third period. 

"They score late on their power play twice," Hornqvist said. "Those key goals they get there, it's hard to win when they score those kind of goals, at least when our power play gets zero goals. That's the difference of the game."

Video: PIT@WSH: Kessel scores on deflected centering feed

 

Goal of the game

Oshie's tip-in at 18:09 of the second period.

Video: PIT@WSH: Oshie tips feed over Murray's glove for PPG

 

Save of the game

Holtby's save on Kessel at 2:36 of the third period.

Video: PIT@WSH: Holtby kicks out his left pad to deny Kessel

 

Highlight of the game

Backstrom's pass on Stephenson's goal at 13:42 of the third period.

Video: PIT@WSH: Stephenson buries pretty dish from Backstrom

 

They said it

"We all know what Braden is capable of. He can really steal games for us, and that's really impressive. We've been fortunate, too, that we've been having good teams here that we put up a lot of wins. Hopefully we helped him a little bit." -- Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom

"I thought we had opportunities to shoot the puck. We've been reluctant for whatever reason the last couple of games to shoot the puck, and I think we can generate offense off it. When we have that shot-first mindset, I think the power play's at its best." -- Penguins coach Mike Sullivan

"We bent a couple times but we didn't break. That's what you have to do against the Penguins sometimes." -- Capitals coach Barry Trotz

 

Need to know

Holtby is 200-76-31. Dryden was 200-41 with 61 ties. … Capitals forward Jay Beagle won 13 of 17 face-offs (76 percent). He ranks second in the NHL among players with at least 50 taken (62.5 percent), behind Anaheim Ducks forward Antoine Vermette (63.8). … Crosby, who played his 800th NHL game, hasn't scored a goal in 10 games and has three assists during that stretch.

 

What's next

Penguins: At the Nashville Predators on Saturday (8 p.m. ET; FS-TN, ATTSN-PT, NHL.TV)

Capitals: Host the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, TVA Sports, NBCSWA, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Holtby records 200th win as Caps top Pens, 4-1

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