Washington: Alex Ovechkin scored his 40th goal of the season as the Washington Capital stars delivered on the outdoor stage with a 5-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.
Ovechkin, who is now just two goals away from career No. 600, helped spearhead the Capital offence along with teammate Nicklas Backstrom who finished with three points in the NHL outdoor game at the United States Naval Academy.
Toronto, who were missing their rising star Auston Matthews, are now 2-5-2 in their last nine games.
“I thought they smacked us around and forechecked us. At the start, they were just at a different level than us,” said Leafs coach Mike Babcock.
Ovechkin became the sixth player in league history with nine-plus 40-goal seasons, joining Wayne Gretzky (12), Marcel Dionne (10) Mario Lemieux (10), Mike Gartner (nine) and Mike Bossy (nine).
“Forty is good, but 50’s better,” Ovechkin said. “I still have time to do that.”
The game included a 16-minute delay in the third period because of a power outage.