MONTREAL (AP)—The Washington Capitals picked up another win in Canada courtesy of one of their lesser known young talents.
“I was just thinking, ‘Get it off quick’, because Price is so good positionally,” said Green, a 22-year-old chosen 29th overall in the 2004 draft. “You give a sec and he’s going to be over there to make the stop.”
So, on behalf of those of you who don’t know—who is Mike Green?
“I’m getting that question asked an awful lot lately and pretty soon he’s going to be pretty well known,” Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau said. “I think he leads the league in goals for defensemen now and he’s getting better and better offensively. He had a little bit of an off-day defensively but usually he’s dead on in that as well. He’s a great young player and I don’t know too many defensemen his age that can do what he can do at the NHL level.”
Alexander Ovechkin had two goals and Nicklas Backstrom and Boyd Gordon also scored for the Capitals, who have won three of their last four games, including consecutive wins over Eastern Conference-leading Ottawa.
Alex Kovalev scored his 18th goal 11:26 into the third to draw Montreal even for the second time in the period at 4.
Tomas Plekanec, who opened the scoring on a fine pass from Kovalev during a power play 2:38 in, got his second assist of the game on the play as Kovalev beat Olaf Kolzig with a wrist shot from high in the slot.
The Canadiens fell to 7-8-4 at home and have lost eight of their last 10 games at the Bell Centre.
Andrei Kostitsyn also scored for Montreal and Price stopped 25 shots. Kolzig made 23 saves.
“You have to give the guys on this team credit, they kept going at them to score the four goals,” Price said.
Roman Hamrlik scored his third of the season 2:05 into the third to draw Montreal even at 3 after the Canadiens allowed three goals in the second to blow a two-goal lead.
“We didn’t deserve to win the way we played in the last two periods,” Canadiens left wing Christopher Higgins said. “It was nice to see we came back two times in the third to tie it up but we definitely didn’t deserve to win.”
Ovechkin restored Washington’s one-goal lead at 4-3 at 8:31 with his second goal of the game—his 32nd of the season—6:38 into the third.
The Russian superstar used Hamrlik and fellow Canadiens defenseman Josh Gorges to screen Price before beating him with a wrist shot from the slot and dancing off to the left corner where he jumped into the glass in celebration.
Ovechkin, Backstrom and Gordon each scored in the second as Washington erased a 2-0 deficit.
Ovechkin scored got his 31st goal of the season during a power play 8:31 into the second off a draw from the right faceoff circle. Nylander won the faceoff and pulled the puck directly back to Ovechkin, who beat Price with a wrist shot to draw Washington within one.
“He gets the puck off quick,” Price said. “I don’t think there was much I could do on the first one.”
Backstrom scored his eighth goal 11:53 into the second to tie it at 2 and Gordon gave Washington a 3-2 lead with his fourth goal late in the second.
Gordon put a 40-foot slap shot from the right side past Price with 1:09 remaining in the second to put Washington up 3-2.
Plekanec helped stake Montreal to its early lead with a power-play goal in the first period and an assist on linemate Kostitsyn’s goal 7:27 into the second.
Ovechkin had gone without a goal in each of his last two games, matching a season-high. … Hamrlik’s two previous goals were both game-winners. … Kostitsyn has eight goals and seven assists in his last 14 games.