(The Sports Xchange) – Highlights of Saturday’s National Hockey League games:
Capitals 6, Canadiens 1
Alex Ovechkin followed up his opening night hat-trick with a four-goal performance and the Washington Capitals routed the Montreal Canadiens 6-1 at Capital One Arena on Saturday.
Ovechkin became the fourth NHL player to have a hat-trick in each of his team’s first two games of a season and the first since 1917, when three players did it.
The Russian, who started the scoring at 20 seconds, picked up his 19th career hat trick to tie him with Peter Bondra for the all-time franchise lead. He has four career four-goal games.
Evgeny Kuznetsov contributed four assists, while T.J. Oshie and Nathan Walker — who became the first Australian national to play in an NHL game — added goals for Washington.
Golden Knights 2, Coyotes 1 (OT)
James Neal scored his third goal in two nights at 3:45 in overtime and the expansion team rallied late to beat Arizona and improve to 2-0.
Neal scored twice as the Golden Knights won 2-1 at Dallas on Friday in the franchise’s first game, then rode a 42-28 edge in shots to deal the Coyotes their second difficult loss in as many contests.
Neal then Antti Raanta with a wrist shot as he skated through the left circle after Arizona had controlled most of the overtime.
Penguins 4, Predators 0
Matt Murray stopped 26 shots and Ryan Reaves scored his first goal with Pittsburgh as the Penguins shut out Nashville.
Reaves, a rugged winger acquired from St Louis in the offseason, also got in two fights.
Beside picking up their first win in three games, the Penguins bounced back from a 10-1 loss Thursday at Chicago and reasserted itself against Nashville in a rematch of the 2017 Stanley Cup final won by the Penguins in six games.
Maple Leafs 8, Rangers 5
Tyler Bozak scored the go-ahead goal in the third period and Toronto defeated New York.
The Rangers came back from 5-1 down to tie the game with three second-period goals. Leo Komarov put the Maple Leafs ahead by two goals on a power-play at 9:52 and Nazim Kadri scored his second goal of the season on a power-play at 18:30.
Zach Hyman scored twice for Toronto while Dominic Moore, Gardiner and Nikita Zaitsev added one apiece.
Kings 4, Sharks 1
Anze Kopitar scored his first two goals of the season as Los Angeles dominated from start to finish to beat San Jose.
Dustin Brown scored and set up a goal, Nick Shore also tallied and Kopitar added an assist for the Kings. Jonathan Quick finished with 24 saves.
Martin Jones was lifted in favor of backup Aaron Dell after surrendering four goals on 29 shots for San Jose.
Canucks 3, Oilers 2
Bo Horvat scored two goals and Vancouver overcame an early deficit to open their season with a victory over Edmonton.
Brandon Sutter also scored for the Canucks in Travis Green’s first game as coach. Vancouver goaltender Jacob Markstrom overcame a shaky start to finish with 33 saves.
Kris Russell and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored for the Oilers.
Blackhawks 5, Blue Jackets 1
Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Brandon Saad each had a goal and an assist as Chicago cruised past Columbus.
Jan Rutta and Richard Panik also scored for the Blackhawks.
Chicago has outscored opponents 15-2 in opening the season with back-to-back wins. Chicago’s Corey Crawford stopped 32 shots.
Flyers 3, Ducks 2 (OT)
Wayne Simmonds scored at 46 seconds of overtime as Philadelphia defeated Anaheim.
Simmonds took a feed from Sean Couturier just inside the Ducks blueline and benefited from a defensive mixup before firing a wrist shot past John Gibson for his fourth goal on the season.
Simmonds has registered both game-winning goals this season for the Flyers.
Blues 4, Stars 2
Jaden Schwartz capped a three-goal flurry in the first period that sent St Louis to a victory in its home opener over Dallas.
Schwartz’s goal followed goals by defensemen Carl Gunnarsson and Joel Edmundson and came in a span of five minutes. Five of the Blues’ nine goals in their first two games this season have been scored by defensemen.
Jake Allen lost his shutout bid 2:48 into the third period when John Klingberg scored a power-play goal for the Stars.
Red Wings 2, Senators 1 (SO)
Frans Nielsen scored the only goal in the shootout as Detroit defeated Ottawa.
Rookie Martin Frk scored his second goal of the season with 2:34 left in the third period to break a scoreless deadlock, but the lead was short-lived. Only 43 seconds later, Ottawa’s Dion Phaneuf scored his first of the season.
Jimmy Howard made 37 saves for the Red Wings, while the Senators’ Craig Anderson stopped 29 shots.
Panthers 5, Lightning 4
Colton Sceviour, Jared McCann and Vincent Trocheck scored in a span of 2:28 in the third period to rally Florida past Tampa Bay.
Evgenii Dadonov and Nick Bjugstad had a goal and assist apiece for the Panthers. Aaron Ekblad, Jonathan Huberdeau, Micheal Haley, Aleksander Barkov, Radim Vrbata and Brickley had assists while James Reimer made 26 saves.
Nikita Kucherov, Vladislav Namestnikov, Brayden Point and Tyler Johnson scored for the Lightning. Steven Stamkos recorded two assists while Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 43 shots.
Flames 6, Jets 3
TJ Brodie scored twice and set up two other goals to lead Calgary over Winnipeg.
The Flames trailed 3-1 after the first period before rallying with goals by Brodie, Micheal Ferland, Johnny Gaudreau and Kris Versteeg in the second to take the lead.
Mikael Backlund tipped in Dougie Hamilton’s point shot 16 seconds into the third period to round out the scoring.
Islanders 6, Sabres 3
John Tavares and Casey Cizikas scored twice apiece as New York rode a flurry of second-period goals to victory over Buffalo.
Tavares, Cizikas and Josh Bailey scored within a 1:47 span in the second for the Islanders, who bounced back from a 5-0 loss to Columbus on Friday.
Anthony Beauvillier scored in the third period and Jaroslav Halak made 26 saves.
Hurricanes 5, Wild 4 (SO)
Defenseman Jaccob Slavin scored the only goal in the shootout and Scott Darling won his Carolina debut as the Hurricanes snapped a six-game winless streak in season openers with a victory over Minnesota.
The Wild’s Mikko Koivu scored with 0.3 seconds left in regulation with goalie Alex Stalock pulled for an extra attacker to tie the score at 4-4.
Slavin beat Stalock with a backhander as Carolina rallied three times from one-goal deficits.
Devils 4, Avalanche 1
Defenseman Will Butcher recorded three power-play assists in his NHL debut as New Jersey opened its season with a victory over Colorado.
Butcher was one of three Devils playing his first professional game, including 19-year-old Jesper Bratt, who scored on the power-play late in the second period to give New Jersey a 3-1 lead.
Bratt also assisted on John Moore’s short-handed goal with six minutes to play in the third period.