February 7, 2018 / 2:57 AM / in 3 months

Backstrom's 200th career goal leads Caps past Blue Jackets

Nicklas Backstrom scored his 200th career goal with 43 seconds left to give the Washington Capitals a 3-2 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday night at Nationwide Arena in Columbus.

Alex Ovechkin began the game-winning play by sending the puck toward the net, and T.J. Oshie got it in the left circle and made a blind pass to the right side. Backstrom was waiting and fired it past Columbus goalie Sergei Bobrovsky.

Backstrom, who also had an assist in the game, became the fifth Washington player to reach the 200-goal mark.

Ovechkin added two assists.

The Capitals have won the first two games between the two teams this season. In addition, this win snapped a two-game Washington losing streak.

The Capitals also have scored a point in 11 of their last 12 games versus the Blue Jackets. Washington has gone 9-1-2 in that stretch.

Meanwhile, Columbus dropped its fourth straight game. The Blue Jackets also have lost five of their last six.

Still, Columbus took an early lead when David Savard scored on a wrist shot from near the blue line just 1:58 into the game.

The Capitals tied it on a John Carlson power-play goal at 4:54 of the first period. He blasted a one-timer past Bobrovsky. Evgeny Kuznetsov got the second assist — behind Backstrom — and now has a point in seven straight games.

Washington coach Barry Trotz moved Backstrom back to the top line with Ovechkin and Tom Wilson, and that move paid off in the second period.

That’s when Ovechkin sent a cross-ice pass to Wilson, who then made a quick move and slid a back-hander past Bobrovsky for a 2-1 lead at the 5:00 mark.

Columbus came up with several scoring chances in the second and third period and finally tied it when Brandon Dubinsky scored with 6:05 left. He fired a shot from Braden Holtby’s left that the Washington goalie stopped, but Dubinsky pushed the rebound in from a sharp angle and tied the game at two.

Holtby was strong throughout the game and finished with 37 saves in the win.

This was the first of a home-and-home series between the two teams. The second part comes Friday night in Washington.

—Field Level Media

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