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Backstrom, Capitals defeat Blue Jackets with late goal

Scores game-winner with 42.9 seconds left; Holtby makes 37 saves

by Craig Merz / NHL.com Correspondent

COLUMBUS -- Nicklas Backstrom scored his 200th NHL goal with 42.9 seconds left in the third period, and the Washington Capitals defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 at Nationwide Arena on Tuesday.

Backstrom is the fifth player to score 200 goals for the Capitals.

"I'm honored to be that [fifth] guy," Backstrom said. "Throughout the years, I've played with some great guys who've helped me. All the credit to them."

 

[WATCH: All Capitals vs. Blue Jackets highlights]

 

Washington (31-17-5), which had lost its past two games, was pressing when a shot by Alex Ovechkin was blocked by Columbus defenseman David Savard to the left of the goal. T.J. Oshie collected the puck and passed cross-crease to Backstrom, who scored on a one-timer.

"There was a puck flying toward my face area," Oshie said. "As I turned around to get the puck I saw [Backstrom] over there. I saw a white jersey over there, so I tried to get it over there as quick as possible and he did the rest."

John Carlson and Tom Wilson scored, Ovechkin had two assists, and Braden Holtby made 37 saves for the Capitals.

Video: WSH@CBJ: Carlson rips home Backstrom's great feed

Savard and Brandon Dubinsky scored, and Sergei Bobrovsky made 22 saves for Columbus (27-22-4), which has lost four straight (0-3-1).

"We'd like to get more than two goals tonight, but we played a hard game," Blue Jackets defenseman Seth Jones said. "You see the importance of every play. Against a team like this, with 45 seconds left, you can't afford defensive plays like that.

"These last two games I feel like we've thrown away some points."

Dubinsky tied the game 2-2 with 6:05 left in the third period when he put in his rebound. He redirected a pass from Markus Nutivaara toward the net, Holtby made the save with his left pad, but the rebound went off the right post to Dubinsky, who tipped it in.

Savard made it 1-0 at 1:58 of the first period, taking a pass from Alexander Wennberg in the high slot and shooting past a screened Holtby.

Video: WSH@CBJ: Savard finds twine on top-shelf wrister

Carlson tied it 1-1 with a power-play goal at 4:54, the eighth allowed by the Blue Jackets in their past 12 penalty kills. He scored from the top of the zone off a pass from Evgeny Kuznetsov, who has seven points (one goal, six assists) in his past five games.

"You get momentum from your special teams and I thought we did," Capitals coach Barry Trotz said.

Wilson gave the Capitals a 2-1 lead at 5:00 of the second period.

"It's a grind. It's a long season," Dubinsky said. "Nobody said it was going to be easy for us. It's hard right now not getting results."

Video: WSH@CBJ: Wilson dekes, buries pretty backhand goal

 

Goal of the game

Backstrom's goal with 42.9 seconds left in the third period.

Video: WSH@CBJ: Backstrom buries his 200th career goal

 

Save of the game

Holtby's save on Cam Atkinson at 14:39 of the second period.

Video: WSH@CBJ: Holtby robs Atkinson with terrific stop

 

Highlight of the game

Dubinsky's goal at 13:55 of the third period.

Video: WSH@CBJ: Dubinsky pots his own rebound late

 

They said it

"At times our penalty kill wasn't as good as it can be and as expected to be. Tonight, we got tested in some key moments and the guys came up big." -- Capitals forward T.J. Oshie

 

"It's been that way for us most of the year here where things haven't totally gone our way in games. Somehow, we've got to have the wherewithal to keep finding ourselves, keep staying with it and turn these games into wins and get on a run. I'm encouraged how we've played the past couple of nights." -- Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella

 

Need to know

The four other players to score 200 goals for the Capitals are Ovechkin, 590; Peter Bondra, 472; Mike Gartner, 397; and Mike Ridley, 218. … Ovechkin has 21 points (nine goals, 12 assists) in his past 15 games. … The Blue Jackets are 2-6-1 in their past nine games.

 

What's next

Capitals: Host the Blue Jackets on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSWA, FS-O, NHL.TV)

Blue Jackets: At the Capitals on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSWA, FS-O, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Backstrom's 200th goal leads Caps past Jackets, 3-2

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