Washington at New York

Ovechkin's 100th NHL goal comes in loss to Rangers

CBSSports.com wire reports

NEW YORK -- Scott Gomez scored the goal the New York Rangers waited four games to celebrate.

It was important that the longtime New Jersey Devil netted his first with the Rangers, but nowhere near as crucial that it came on the power play.

Gomez scored the first of New York's three man-advantage goals in the first period -- all set up in part by captain Jaromir Jagr -- and the Rangers went on to hand the Washington Capitals their first loss of the season, 3-1 on Friday.

In what looked like a special-teams mismatch, the Rangers brought in an anemic power-play unit that had failed in all 15 chances over the season's first three games. Washington hadn't allowed a power-play goal in 12 shorthanded situations while jumping to a 3-0 start.

That all changed quickly as Gomez, Martin Straka and defenseman Michal Rozsival connected in the first period when the Rangers enjoyed six power-play chances.

"We knew it was going to happen," Gomez said. "We just wanted to go more to the net. We've had chances on the power play, and tonight it finally clicked."

Alexander Ovechkin answered Gomez's tally with his 100th career goal in just 167 NHL games. That briefly tied it for the Capitals before Straka and Rozsival put New York back in control during a period in which the Rangers outshot Washington 20-7.

Henrik Lundqvist was steady while seeing 25 shots, 14 through two periods, and helped the Rangers (2-2) snap a two-game losing skid.

The Rangers haven't been disappointed in their play, just in the outcomes. Through four games, New York has outscored opponents 9-7 and outshot them 138-117.

"Our power play won us the game," forward Brendan Shanahan said. "It's obviously a results business, but we're really trying to look at other stats that in the long run will get us lots of wins -- that's generating scoring chances and eliminating scoring chances from the other team."

Olie Kolzig made 38 saves in facing his second barrage of shots in New York in two games. The Capitals were outshot 31-12 Monday on Long Island, but won 2-1 over the Islanders.

Giving up 37 shots and eight power plays against the Rangers in the first 40 minutes was too much to overcome.

"It wasn't a good start," Kolzig said. "You a give team like that that many opportunities in the first period they're bound to get some in. It's a lesson learned."

Ovechkin, who broke a tie with Jagr for 31st place on the Capitals career points list (202), was whistled for tripping just 10 seconds in. It took only 1:23 more for Gomez to net his long-awaited first goal and point with the Rangers.

"My penalty was terrible," Ovechkin said. "It was a big mistake for me. They score on the first shift and it was not good for us."

Jagr made a backhanded pass from the wall to Shanahan in the right circle. Shanahan pushed it to Gomez, who was gliding to the net, for a quick shot past Kolzig.

"Jags started it all off, making that pass to Shanny," Gomez said. "What can you say about that guy? 'The Big Smooth' just passed it right down and I threw it on net."

Ovechkin tied it at 7:46, making a backhand-to-forehand move that got him past defenseman Paul Mara and sliding a shot in behind Lundqvist during the Capitals' second power play.

But Straka and Rozsival scored 4:33 apart to push the lead to 3-1.

Kolzig protested Straka's goal, scored into an open left side, because Marcel Hossa struck the goalie in the head with his elbow as he crossed the crease after his shot was stopped. The puck bounded to Straka, who easily netted his second of the season at 13:26.

Hossa appeared to be shoved from behind by former Rangers defenseman Tom Poti.

Jagr, who had the primary assist on Rozsival's second this season, is still being paid $3.46 million this season by the Capitals. Washington traded him to New York in January 2004 after 2½ failed seasons.


  • Jagr moved past Paul Coffey into 11th place on the NHL career points list with 1,533. Ray Bourque is next with 1,579.
  • D Paul Mara returned to the New York lineup after being a healthy scratch for two games. Jason Strudwick sat out.
  • The Capitals' best start is 4-0, last done in the 1997-98 season when they made their only Stanley Cup finals appearance.
  • Ovechkin, with two goals and two assists, has points in all four games.
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Alexander Ovechkin reaches the 100-goal plateau in the NHL, but it comes in a loss to the Rangers. (AP)
Alexander Ovechkin reaches the 100-goal plateau in the NHL, but it comes in a loss to the Rangers. (AP)
Washington (3-1-0)1001
NY Rangers  (2-2-0) «3003
Three Stars
J. Jagr

Goals: 0
Assist(s): 3
S. Gomez

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 0
O. Kolzig

Saves: 38
Save Pct.: .927

Related Video

Scoring Summary
01:33Power Play - Scott Gomez (1), Tip-In. Assist: Brendan Shanahan, Jaromir Jagr
07:46Power Play - Alex Ovechkin (2), Wrist Shot. Assist: Mike Green, Tom Poti
13:26Power Play - Martin Straka (2), Tip-In. Assist: Marcel Hossa, Jaromir Jagr
17:59Power Play - Michal Rozsival (2), Tip-In. Assist: Jaromir Jagr, Chris Drury
Penalty Summary
10.0Ovechkin, 2 min, Tripping
02:57Drury, 2 min, Hooking
06:37Malik, 2 min, Hooking
10:47Erskine, 4 min, High sticking
15:29Ovechkin, 2 min, Too Many Men on the Ice(bench)
16:42Laich, 2 min, Hooking
18:25Nylander, 2 min, Tripping
59.0Kozlov, 2 min, Boarding
16:58Fleischmann, 2 min, Tripping
13:26Tyutin, 2 min, Holding
15:34Pettinger, 2 min, Roughing
15:34Mara, 2 min, Roughing
16:31Rozsival, 2 min, Hooking
19:40Drury, 2 min, Hooking
New York2017441
Olaf Kolzig58:01383
Henrik Lundqvist59:59241
Game Information
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Referees - Marc Joannette, Rob Martell
Linesmen - Mark Shewchyk, Greg Devorski
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