CAPITALS 7, FLYERS 0
PHILADELPHIA —The Washington Capitals showed they can do just fine without Alex Ovechkin.
With their captain and leading scorer at home nursing an injury, the Capitals put together their best offensive effort of the season in a 7-0 rout of the Philadelphia Flyers on Friday night.
Joel Ward scored three goals for his first NHL hat trick in the fight-filled outburst.
Ward’s linemate, Jason Chimera, added a goal and three assists, and Nicklas Backstrom and Mikhail Grabovski each had three points as the Capitals (6-7) won for the first time this season when Ovechkin didn’t score a goal.
Ovechkin didn’t make the trip to Philadelphia because of an upper-body injury.
“When (Chimera) and I talked in the warmup, I said, ‘Gee, I feel pretty good today,“’ Ward said. “He kind of looked at me and said the same thing.
“We’ve just been rolling. (Chimera) has been flying and getting some big goals for us.”
Washington had been 0-4 when Ovechkin, who entered Friday second in the league with 10 goals, didn’t score.
“We worked as a team,” Backstrom said. “We scored on our chances. That’s what you have to do, especially when you have a good goal-scorer out of the lineup.
“Lots of guys stepped up, and that’s exactly what we needed.”
Braden Holtby coasted to a shutout, making 30 saves.
Ward’s third-period goal that made it 7-0 sparked a brawl. Just 9 seconds later, Philadelphia’s Wayne Simmonds fought Washington’s Tom Wilson. Flyers goalie Ray Emery then took on Holtby in another bout.
“As a group, I think it’s a frustrating night,” Emery said. “Fans are frustrated, and we don’t accept that. I think frustration sometimes shows that way.”
Emery received the highest total of 29 penalty minutes. He was charged with leaving the goal crease, instigating a fight, and fighting. He was also ejected from the game.
During the fight, he knocked Holtby off his feet and landed several hits before an official broke it up.
“He didn’t want to fight, but I basically said, ‘Protect yourself,“’ Emery said.
In the melee, a total of 114 penalty minutes were handed out. Overall, Philadelphia racked up 99 penalty minutes, and Washington received 65.
“They play that type of game,” Capitals coach Adam Oates said. “They like five, seven power plays a night, both sides. We don’t. We want to roll four lines. We want to get everybody involved.”
Holtby was perfect in handing the Flyers their first shutout loss of the season. Philadelphia (3-9) entered tied for last in the league with just 20 goals.
“It’s embarrassing to be playing in front of our fans and losing 7-0,” Flyers captain Claude Giroux said. “It’s not acceptable and we need to figure it out.”
The Capitals didn’t register their first shot until 4:56 remained in the first period. A little over two minutes later, Backstrom gave them the lead.
Nate Schmidt saved a Flyers clearing attempt and shuffled the puck to Martin Erat, who quickly passed it to Backstrom at the top of the right circle for a wrist shot over Steve Mason’s glove.
Ward made it a two-goal advantage 1:24 into the second period on an assist from Chimera.
“Their line has been playing very well,” Oates said. “A lot of good things are happening because they’re playing very well, playing together. Then you’re in the right spot, good things happen, you get chances and sometimes the puck goes in for you.”
Less than a minute later, Chimera beat Mason on a breakaway. That prompted Flyers coach Craig Berube to pull Mason and replace him with Emery.
That made little difference as Emery allowed another goal to Backstrom just 65 seconds after the goalie entered the game.
After Ward made it 5-0 at 16:25 of the second period, new Flyers forward Steve Downie — perhaps trying to spark his team in his debut — fought Aaron Volpatti.
While it earned applause from the crowd, Downie was handed an instigation penalty and a 10-minute misconduct. The Capitals took advantage, making it 6-0 on Troy Brouwer’s power-play goal. It ended a streak of 15 straight penalties killed by the Flyers.
Washington, however, extended its penalty-killing streak to 30. Philadelphia was 0 for 5 with the man advantage.
Backstrom has 35 points, including 11 goals, in 22 career games against Philadelphia.
Notes: Downie began his second stint with the Flyers, who acquired him Thursday from Colorado for forward Maxime Talbot. Downie sustained a head injury during his fight and was taken to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania after the game, Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren said. ... Giroux hasn’t scored a goal through 12 games. ... Philadelphia will play at New Jersey on Saturday. ... Washington returns home after a season-high, five-game road trip to face Florida on Saturday.
LIGHTNING 3, HURRICANES 0
RALEIGH, N.C. — Victor Hedman scored in the second period, and Steven Stamkos added an insurance goal to back Ben Bishop’s shutout in Tampa Bay’s victory over Carolina.
Bishop (8-2) stopped 31 shots in his first shutout of the season and second of his career against Carolina. Alex Killorn added a goal and an assist, and Martin St. Louis had two assists.
The Lightning have won four of five overall and eight of nine at Carolina.
Carolina, which lost its fourth straight, fell to 1-3-3 at home. Justin Peters (0-4) made 29 saves.
BLUES 4, PANTHERS 0
SUNRISE, Fla. — Brian Elliott stopped 31 shots for his first win of the season, and Alexander Steen scored for the sixth straight game as St. Louis beat Florida.
Alex Pietrangelo, Chris Stewart and Derek Roy added goals, and Steen posted his NHL-leading 12th this season. David Backes had two assists for St. Louis, which won its third straight.
Elliott hadn’t earned a win since April 27 against Chicago. His previous shutout was April 11 at Minnesota.
Jacob Markstrom made 19 saves for Florida, which lost for the fifth time in six games.
PENGUINS 4, BLUE JACKETS 2
PITTSBURGH — Chris Kunitz scored for the third straight game, and Pittsburgh had little trouble in a win over Columbus.
Brandon Sutter, Kris Letang and Jason Megna also scored for Pittsburgh. Sidney Crosby recorded an assist to push his point total to an NHL-leading 22. Marc-Andre Fleury made 37 saves and earned his 10th win, tops in the league.
Derek MacKenzie and Ryan Johansen scored for Columbus but the Blue Jackets couldn’t match Pittsburgh’s firepower. Reigning Vezina Trophy winner Sergei Bobrovsky allowed three goals on 13 shots before being pulled early in the second period in favour of backup Curtis McElhinney.
Bobrovsky entered the game 5-1-1 in his last seven games against Pittsburgh.
ISLANDERS 5, SENATORS 4 (SO)
OTTAWA — Frans Nielsen scored the tying goal in the third period and then netted the only goal of the shootout as the New York Islanders topped Ottawa.
Nielsen moved in on goalie Robin Lehner and put a backhand in on the Islanders’ second and last shot of the shootout.
The Islanders (5-5-3) outshot the Senators 57-31 through overtime, and got goals from Matt Martin, John Tavares and Pierre-Marc Bouchard in regulation. Evgeni Nabokov made 27 saves for New York, which rallied from a pair of two-goal deficits.
Erik Condra, Bobby Ryan, Mika Zibanejad and Clarke MacArthur scored for the Senators (4-6-3). Lehner making the biggest contribution with 53 saves, including one against Thomas Vanek on a breakaway in overtime.
WILD 4, CANADIENS 3
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Jason Pominville scored two goals, including the game-winner late in the third period, to lead Minnesota over Montreal.
Pominville beat goalie Carey Price and notched his team-leading ninth goal with 5:28 left. Justin Fontaine and Nino Niederreiter also scored for Minnesota.
Brendan Gallagher, P.K. Subban and Brian Gionta had goals for Montreal, which rallied from a 3-1 third-period deficit but couldn’t win its third straight game.
Pominville gave Minnesota a 2-1 lead in the second after he corralled a long lead pass from Mikael Granlund and beat Price between his pads on a breakaway.
AVALANCHE 3, STARS 2 (OT)
DALLAS — Paul Stastny’s second goal of the game 3:36 into overtime gave Colorado and troubled goalie Semyon Varlamov a victory over Dallas.
Stastny fired a shot from the left circle past goalie Kari Lehtonen to beat the Stars, who had rallied from a 2-0 deficit. The goal was his fourth of the season for the Avalanche (11-1).
Dallas had scored twice in the third period against Varlamov, who two days earlier spent the night in jail because of an alleged assault against his girlfriend.
Stastny had made it 1-0 at 8:22 of the first period. Gabriel Landeskog doubled Colorado’s lead with 1:19 left in the second.
The Stars, who recorded just 12 shots in the first two periods, began their comeback with Alex Goligoski’s goal at 3:57 of the third period. Tyler Seguin tied it at 16:31.
Dallas (5-6-2) had scored just three third-period goals in its first 12 games, and hadn’t rallied in the final frame to win any of them.
RED WINGS 4, FLAMES 3
CALGARY, Alberta — Justin Abdelkader scored the winning goal with 3:24 left to help Detroit edge Calgary.
Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg each had a goal and an assist for the Red Wings (8-4-2), who were coming off a win at Vancouver on Wednesday. Tomas Tatar also scored, and Niklas Kronwall and Todd Bertuzzi both had two assists.
Jimmy Howard stopped 22 shots to improve to 5-4-2. Calgary’s Joey MacDonald made 18 saves.
Chris Butler, Sean Monahan and Curtis Glencross scored for the Flames (5-6-2), who went 1-2 on a three-game homestand. Jiri Hudler finished with two assists.