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game recap

Capitals fail to extend Metropolitan lead

Allow six goals to Coyotes, margin remains at four points

by Jerry Brown / NHL.com Correspondent

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Washington Capitals failed to add to their lead in the Metropolitan Division, losing to the Arizona Coyotes 6-3 at Gila River Arena on Friday.

Washington (51-18-8) had won six in a row. The Capitals lead the Columbus Blue Jackets by four points in the division, Eastern Conference and NHL with five games remaining. Columbus lost 3-1 to the Chicago Blackhawks.

Washington plays at Columbus on Sunday.

"We weren't good at the end of the game in Minnesota (a 5-4 overtime win Tuesday), and we weren't good in Colorado (a 5-3 win Wednesday), and then tonight was an eye-opener," Capitals defenseman Karl Alzner said.

 

WATCH: All Capitals vs. Coyotes highlights

 

"We weren't good at the end of the game in Minnesota (a 5-4 overtime win Tuesday), and we weren't good in Colorado (a 5-3 win Wednesday), and then tonight was an eye-opener," Capitals defenseman Karl Alzner said.

Video: WSH@ARI: Burmistrov roofs one-timer to pad lead

Christian Dvorak and Alexander Burmistrov each scored twice, and Josh Jooris and Peter Holland scored for Arizona (28-41-9). Louis Domingue made an NHL career-high 45 saves for his fifth win in his past six starts.

"I think the hardest thing for teams right now that play against us is they don't know what to expect from us," Burmistrov said after his first two-goal game in 319 NHL games. "We're already out of the playoffs but we're trying to show to the coaches and the management that we want to be here."

The Coyotes had scored one goal in each of the past four games, all losses. But Dvorak, Jooris and Burmistrov scored in a 5:46 span of the first period against the Capitals, who had allowed the fewest goals (165) in the NHL entering play.

"It might have been our worst period since I've been here," Washington coach Barry Trotz said. "They had 11 scoring chances, and I thought they had eight that were Grade A. Some games, you don't even see that.

"We were junk. We have to start from scratch."

Video: WSH@ARI: Dvorak pots PPG for his second of the game

Nicklas Backstrom, Daniel Winnik and Justin Williams scored for Washington. Braden Holtby made 19 saves but was pulled with 6:48 left in the first period after allowing the three goals. Philipp Grubauer did not make a save playing the remainder of the period before Holtby returned to play the final two.

"The thing I was most upset about from the start was rebound control and creating stuff out of nothing," Holtby said. "That's where I have to be a calming presence for the team, and I thought I did the opposite and it kind of snowballed. That's something that can't happen."

Backstrom scored on the power play at 1:39 of the second period to make it 3-1, and Winnik scored off a Tom Wilson rebound at 11:04 to put Washington within 3-2.

Dvorak turned a Jay Beagle turnover into an unassisted power-play goal to make it 4-2 at 13:28, and Burmistrov made it 5-2 at 17:52 off a Max Domi set-up on the power play. The Coyotes had scored six power-play goals in 56 chances before the back-to-back goals.

Holland gave Arizona a 6-2 lead at 10:17 of the third period, and Williams scored 20 seconds later to make it 6-3.

Video: WSH@ARI: Holland forces miscue, pots top-shelf beauty

 

Goal of the game

Dvorak lost a breakaway chance but recovered the puck, skated between the circles and beat Holtby over the glove for the first of his two goals.

Video: WSH@ARI: Dvorak forces turnover, scores superb goal

 

Save of the game

With the Capitals surging in the second period, Domingue saved an Alex Ovechkin backhand with his glove with 14:19 left.

"When he goes to his backhand, that's probably where you want him," Domingue said.

Video: WSH@ARI: Domingue flashes the leather on Ovi's shot

 

Unsung performance of the game

Coyotes defenseman Connor Murphy was a plus-3 and led Arizona with seven hits and blocked two shots before taking a hit from Williams' helmet to his mouth, causing him to leave the game in the third period. Murphy said after the game he was fine.

 

Highlight of the game

Burmistrov took a pass from Domi and put a backhand over Holtby for his third goal of the season.

Video: WSH@ARI: Burmistrov roofs PPG for his second tally

 

They said it

"It sure felt like 48 shots. But we played a great game. We played like a team that had the lead, especially in the first and second period." -- Coyotes goalie Louis Domingue

 

Need to know

The six goals allowed matched Holtby's NHL career high (Jan. 19, 2013 vs. Tampa Bay Lightning; Feb. 3, 2013 vs. Pittsburgh). … The Capitals were 35-5-2 when scoring a power-play goal. … Coyotes rookies have 103 points this season, second to the Toronto Maple Leafs (288) in the NHL.

 

What's next

Capitals: At the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday (6 p.m. ET; CSN-DC+, FS-O, NHL.TV)

Coyotes: At the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday (10:30 p.m. ET; FS-A+, FS-W, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Dvorak, Burmistrov power Coyotes to dominant 6-3 win

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