Carlson, Capitals escape with 3-2 shootout win over Wild


Minnesota Wild vs. Washington Capitals: Full Highlights

Minnesota Wild vs. Washington Capitals: Full Highlights

WASHINGTON -- — John Carlson scored the shootout winner and the Washington Capitals beat the Minnesota Wild 3-2 on Friday night.

Dylan Strome and Tom Wilson scored in regulation for the Capitals (3-3-1), who have won two consecutive games for the first time since March.

“It's nice to string some together and get some momentum,” Carlson said. “We did a lot of good things tonight.”

Ryan Hartman's third-period tally and fourth goal in three games helped secure a point for Minnesota (3-4-1), which has now lost four of its last five games.

“It would have been nice to get two points. It's a long season, we got a big point here and I think we learned from this how simpler we can play, but more efficient,” goalie Marc-Andre Fleury said.

Special teams, which had plagued Washington to start the season, proved to be the difference maker for the Capitals.

After Marco Rossi opened the scoring for Minnesota just 2:17 minutes in, Wilson tied things at 1 at 9:49 of the first period with a short-handed goal.

Then, near the end of the opening period, Alex Ovechkin found Strome for his team-leading fifth goal of this season on the power play to make it 2-1. Washington now has power-play goals in three straight games after going 0 for 15 to start the year.

Ovechkin now has points in five straight games.

“I think that’s what you need to do nowadays to get wins,” Wilson said. "Special teams are such a huge part of everything, so there are big moments in the game and we’ve kind of had to do a better job controlling those moments and tilting them our way, and tonight we did that and you get a win. It’s a good recipe for success.”

Ovechkin also scored in the second period, but what would have been his 825th career goal was overturned after a coach’s challenge determined the play was offside.

Minnesota continued to struggle on the power play and penalty kill, as the team went 0 for 2 on the man advantage and has now gone five straight games without a power-play goal while also surrendering a power-play goal in each game over that span.

“The only negative is our special teams, right? If our power play could score and not give up one, it could be the difference in the game,” Wild head coach Dean Evason added.

At 1:16 of the third period, Hartman intercepted Martin Fehervary's point shot and went on the breakaway, where he deked to his backhand to beat Darcy Kuemper and make it 2-2 to force overtime.

The shootout went seven rounds, with Carlson finally beating Fleury. Kuemper was perfect in the shootout and made 39 saves for his second win of the season. Fleury had 31 saves for the Wild.

“I knew eventually we'd score, or they would, I guess,” Kuemper said. “Just try to make as many saves as (Fleury's) making at the other end and keep it going.”


Wild: Visit New Jersey on Sunday in the first of a home-and-home series with the Devils.

Capitals: Host the San Jose Sharks on Sunday.