WASHINGTON — Alex Ovechkin was a bit off – and still on target.
The Russian star scored with 48 seconds left and goalie Philipp Grubauer left the ice for an extra attacker to cap a late three-goal rally and the Washington Capitals went on to beat Philadelphia 5-4 in a shootout Sunday.
“I’ll be honest with you, I missed my shot,” Ovechkin said. “It was kind of funny. I didn’t get all of it.”
It was the second time in six days that Ovechkin scored the tying goal with less than a minute left to cap a rally from three goals down. On Tuesday night, in a 6-5 shootout victory over Tampa Bay, Ovechkin powered the comeback with four goals.
Mike Green cut Washington’s deficit to 4-2 with 8:40 remaining, and Dmitry Orlov pulled the Capitals within one with 3:31 to go. The two defensemen scored on long slap shots.
“I think we had too much perimeter stuff, and once we just started peppering him with shots, one was bound to go in,” Green said. “You look at the goals that went in, he either didn’t see it, and it was just a floater, which could have been an easy save from that far out.”
Ovechkin then tied it with his NHL-leading 27th goal.
“I think we had luck on our side today, especially at the end of the game,” Ovechkin said. “I’ll take it and the team will take it.”
In the shootout, Eric Fehr and Nicklas Backstrom scored for Washington and Grubauer made two saves on three shots to give Washington an improbable victory in the first meeting of the teams since they brawled at the end of the Capitals’ 7-0 victory in Philadelphia on Nov. 1.
Marcus Johansson had a first-period power play goal for Washington, scoring on a pass from Ovechkin that went through the legs of a Philadelphia defender.
Claude Giroux, Mark Streit, Sean Couturier and Jacob Voracek scored for Philadelphia, and Michael Raffl had three assists.
“It doesn’t matter how many goals you score and how many points you have in this league,” Streit said. “It’s a very bad loss.”
JETS: Forward Anthony Peluso was suspended for three games for boarding Stars defenseman Alex Goligoski in Winnipeg’s 6-4 loss to Dallas on Saturday night.