January 23, 2020

Washington Capitals Game 7 Recap: Kuznetsov’s hat trick lifts Caps to road sweep

(Photo by Photo by Andy Devlin/NHLI via Getty Images)

(Photo by Photo by Andy Devlin/NHLI via Getty Images)

Evgeny Kuznetsov scored three goals with two assists and the Washington Capitals beat the Edmonton Oilers 7-4, sweeping a three-game Western Canada road swing.

The Caps (6-1-0) knocked off Calgary and Vancouver earlier in the week and have won five in a row altogether.

The hat trick was Kuznetsov’s first in the NHL. Justin Williams, Nick Backstrom, Andre Burakovsky and Marcus Johansson all added goals.

Philipp Grubauer, making his first start of the season in relief of Braden Holtby, made 15 saves.

Kuznetsov started the scoring barely 3 minutes into the contest. He completed a nifty tic-tac-toe, which started with Alex Ovechkin (two assists) feeding T.J. Oshie along the right wing. Oshie hit Kuznetsov perfectly in stride to tap it past Anders Nilsson.

His second of the game broke a 3-all tie in the second period. He collected a loose puck at center ice, sped past a flat-footed defender, deked Nilsson and slipped it backhand.

His last of the evening came on the power play in the third. He took a pass in the right wing circle from Burakovsky and whipped a wicked wrister past Nilsson short-side to complete the hattie.

NEXT GAME: The Caps are off until next Wednesday, when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins at 8:00 p.m.

About Dave Nichols

Dave Nichols is Editor-in-Chief of District Sports Page. He is credentialed to cover the Washington Nationals, Capitals, Wizards and Mystics. Dave also covers national college football and basketball and Major League Soccer for Associated Press and is a copy editor for the Spokesman-Review newspaper in Spokane, WA. He spent four years in radio covering the Baltimore Orioles, Washington Redskins and the University of Maryland football and basketball teams. Dave is a life-long D.C. sports fan and attended his first pro game in 1974 — the Caps’ second game in existence. You can follow him on Twitter @DaveNicholsDSP

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