Hurricanes score 4 straight, beat Capitals

Hurricanes goaltender Pyotr Kochetkov stops a shot by Capitals center Dylan Strome during Carolina’s 4-2 win Friday in Raleigh. (Chris Seward / AP Photo)

RALEIGH — The Hurricanes erased a two-goal lead, scoring four unanswered goals to beat the visiting Capitals 4-2. Jake Guentzel scored twice, and Martin Necas and Sebastian Aho also scored for Carolina.

Alex Ovechkin had both Washington goals.

Three observations

1. There have been many nights in the Rod Brind’Amour coaching era when the Hurricanes “didn’t get what they deserved.”

On Friday, Carolina did.

The Hurricanes outshot the Capitals 44-16 but still found themselves down 2-0 as time wound down in the second period. But Carolina finally broke through with just over five minutes left in the middle frame.

Jaccob Slavin’s attempted stretch pass was deflected in the air and popped over Washington defensemen Trevor van Riemsdyk and Rasmus Sandin. Guentzel pounced, splitting the defenders and reaching to push the puck past Darcy Kuemper (41 saves) to get Carolina on the board.

2. The Hurricanes outshot the Capitals 18-6 in the first period but still trailed 2-0 thanks to two net-front goals by Ovechkin, his 850th and 851st of his career. It was the second straight night Carolina dug itself a hole in the opening 20 minutes after handing Boston a 3-0 lead on Thursday.

“We were playing great,” Brind’Amour said. “It was just a couple bad breaks is really what happened. I thought if we won the game or not, I just liked the way we were going about our business for the most part.”

After Guentzel broke the ice, Carolina’s power play got to work. First, Necas did a little tribute to Ovechkin, ripping a one-timer from the left circle to tie the game with 8:20 left in regulation.

“He used to be my favorite player,” Necas said of Ovechkin. “That shot that he has from his spot is like no one else, and I’m just trying to get close to him.”

Then the Hurricanes got another power play, and Aho banged in a rebound from next to the net for his 34th goal of the season with 1:51 left in the game.

“The bounce was a little lucky,” Aho said, “ you know, I get an empty cage. But still, I think we did a pretty good job overall on the power play tonight and got two goals.”

3. Andrei Svechnikov was a late scratch with an illness, which meant Jesperi Kotkaniemi got back in the lineup after missing his first game of the season the night before. Kotkaniemi responded with a solid performance, finishing with a 76.47% Corsi For, and had two hits as Carolina’s fourth line buried the Capitals’ bottom line.

As for Svechnikov, Brind’Amour said the team was playing it safe.

“He just didn’t feel right,” Brind’Amour said. “We’ve talked about this a lot: There (isn’t) really any reason to put guys in that aren’t 100%.

Number to know

0 — Shots on goal for Seth Jarvis, the second straight game he has been held without one. It’s the third time this season Jarvis has gone without a shot in two straight games. The previous two times, he scored the next game.


Pyotr Kochetkov, Hurricanes goalie — Neither of Ovechkin’s first period goals were Kochetkov’s fault, and his two saves on the Capitals captain and Connor McMichael in succession — the first a breakaway stop on Ovechkin, the second a dazzling glove save — kept Washington’s lead at two. Forty-five seconds later, Guentzel scored to start the Hurricanes’ comeback.

“The turning point for me was really the 2-nothing when we’re still trying to get into it, and we give them a breakaway and then another Grade-A right after,” Brind’Amour said. “And so now, the game’s not out of reach.


Hurricanes’ net-front defense — Both of Ovechkin’s goals came as a result of failed attempts to tie up the Capitals superstar in front of the net. On his first goal, Ovechkin shook loose from Slavin and collected a rebound in front for goal No. 850. On his second of the first period, Ovechkin kept Brett Pesce from tying up his stick and was able to redirect a point shot past Pyotr Kochetkov (14 saves).

They said it

“Man, he’s a special player. I’ll be happy to see him be done, to be honest with you. … He’s just a special player, and I’ve seen way too much of him.”

— Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour on Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin.