WASHINGTON (AP) — Evgeny Kuznetsov continued his dominance against the Vegas Golden Knights, scoring a goal and assisting on three more as part of a 5-2 Washington Capitals victory Wednesday night in a rematch of last season’s Stanley Cup Final.
Kuznetsov assisted on two goals by Alex Ovechkin and one by Nicklas Backstrom and scored his own on the power play. The leading scorer in the Cup Final with eight points in five games, Kuznetsov has seven points through the defending champions’ first three games of the regular season.
Coming off a 49-goal season and a Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP, Ovechkin has four goals in three games. The 610th and 611th goals of his career put him in sole possession of 17th on the NHL’s career list, passing Bobby Hull.
Braden Holtby stopped 29 of 31 shots and bailed out his teammates during an especially sloppy second period. Holtby allowed goals to Cody Eakin in the second period and Reilly Smith in the third.
Vegas goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, who wanted to start this game instead of facing his former team in Pittsburgh on Thursday night, allowed four goals on 28 shots. His teammates hit the post a handful of times and went 0 for 3 on the power play and are 0 for 11 so far this season.
The Golden Knights fell to 1-3-0 at the beginning of their second season. They didn’t lose their third game in their inaugural season until Halloween when they started 8-3-0.
COYOTES 3, DUCKS 2, SO
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Nick Cousins scored in the shootout, Antti Raanta made 23 saves and the Coyotes earned their first win of the season.
Dylan Strome and Brad Richardson scored for Arizona (1-2), which dropped its first 11 games last season.
The Coyotes got their first goal this season when Strome converted a power-play opportunity with 2 1/2 minutes left in the first. They were the last NHL team to score.
Anaheim was trying for the first 4-0 start in franchise history. Ryan Kesler and Ben Street scored for the Ducks (3-0-1), and John Gibson made 37 saves.
FLYERS 7, SENATORS 4
OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — Jakub Voracek and Scott Laughton scored two goals apiece, and Philadelphia rebounded from an embarrassing loss to beat Ottawa.
Sean Couturier, Robert Hagg and Claude Giroux also scored for the Flyers, who were coming off an 8-2 loss to the San Jose Sharks in their home opener a night earlier. Calvin Pickard stopped 31 shots.
Brady Tkachuk scored his first NHL goal and finished with two goals and an assist for Ottawa. Maxime Lajoie also had two goals and an assist for the Senators, who were playing the first of a five-game homestand.
Craig Anderson made 38 saves, but the Flyers victimized him with four goals through two periods before they pulled away in the third.