Capitals can’t solve Flyers, drop second straight game to Philadelphia

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

Caps can’t solve Flyers, drop second straight to Philly originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

WASHINGTON — Facing the Flyers for the second time in as many games, the Capitals once again reshuffled their lines to find a winning lineup now that Nicklas Backstrom and Tom Wilson have returned from injury. They couldn’t find that spark in time Saturday, however, dropping a 3-1 decision in favor of Philadelphia for their third regulation loss in four games.

Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette has rolled out several different lineups in the five games since Backstrom and Wilson made their season debuts. Saturday’s edition provided a new look with Dylan Strome listed as a healthy scratch for the first time while Anthony Mantha returned from his own coach-imposed, two-game absence. Backstrom and Wilson paired up on the second line after they were separated for a few games.

Yet offensive success still alluded the Capitals, who have averaged just 1.75 goals over their last four games. The lone goal of the evening belonged to Alex Ovechkin, who scored a backhander late in the first period for his 30th goal of the season to tie Hall of Famer and Capitals legend Mike Gartner for the most such seasons in NHL history.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

The goal was also his 400th career tally at home; he joined Wayne Gretzky as the only players with at least 400 goals both at home and on the road. Only three players have scored more in front of their home fans: Gretzky (492), Gordie Howe (449) and Jaromir Jagr (411).

While Ovechkin maintained his pace to eclipse the 50-goal mark, the rest of the Capitals’ lineup struggled Saturday. Flyers goaltender Carter Hart stopped 39 of 40 shots he faced and killed all three of Washington’s power-play chances. He stuck Darcy Kuemper with the loss on a night when the defense in front of him put him in several tough situations.

The Capitals dropped to 23-16-6 with the loss. They get the day Sunday to regroup before heading to Madison Square Garden on Monday to take on the New York Islanders in the first of four matchups between the two Metropolitan Division foes this season.