The Washington Capitals -- and Alexander Ovechkin -- are back:
I know what you're gonna say - but the #Caps are 16-9-1 since their awful, awful start.— Brian McNally (@bmcnally14) April 5, 2013
Ovechkin is now tied for second in the league with 20 goals. Caps got off the mat two weeks ago and it may be too late to slow them down.— PATRICK WILLIAMS (@pwilliamsNHL) April 5, 2013
The Capitals beat the New York Islanders 2-1 in a shootout, with the only goal in the shootout coming from a resurgent Ovechkin. The win moved the Capitals into first place in the Southeast Division, tied in points with the Winnipeg Jets but with two games in hand. Because the Southeast Division is quite a bit worse than the other divisions in the East, it could easily turn out that the only Southeast team that makes the playoffs will be the division champion.
Elsewhere in the NHL on a busy Thursday night, new additions made big contributions for the Bruins, Lightning, and Blue Jackets, and two important late games in the West ended in shutouts. Read on for all the details.
All The NHL Scores
Get caught up on Thursday's NHL scores with recaps from our network of SB Nation team blogs. Here's a quick glance at the full night of action:
Prior to last night's games, we presented five burning questions regarding the night's action. Here are your cool, soothing answers.
Gaborik had a solid start with Columbus, as he recorded four shots, a goal, and an assist to help the Blue Jackets beat the Predators 3-1 to stay within striking distance of the final playoff spot in the West.
2. Will there be a new division leader by the end of Thursday night's action?
The Bruins scored a victory but so did the Canadiens, so Boston stayed in second place in the Northeast.
The Capitals won and the Jets didn't, so Washington is your new Southeast Division leader.
Vancouver won, the Wild lost, and the Canucks took over the Northwest Division.
He, like the rest of the Wild, couldn't score on Kings goaltender Jonathan Bernier. The Kings beat the Wild 3-0.
4. How will Jaromir Jagr perform in his debut with the Boston Bruins?
He scored the only goal of the game against the New Jersey Devils, though Jagr would later say he felt "tired" and "bad" all game due to lack of sleep.
5. Will the Philadelphia Flyers extend their three-game winning streak?
The Flyers did it again, beating the Maple Leafs 5-3 and moving to within two points of the eighth-place New York Rangers.
What moment from last night's games will be making headlines in the coming days?
Stat of the Night
A frustrating night of contrasts for the Devils:
Devils' 38 shots on goal are a season-high. Zero goals is season low. Haven't been shut out this season, yet.— Tom Gulitti (@TGfireandice) April 5, 2013
Post to Post
- The Carolina Hurricanes are fragile.
- Evander Kane might, possibly, have tried to hit a guy with his own helmet.
- Some strong language and negativity after a bad loss for the Red Wings.
- Finally, from Russian Machine Never Breaks, Mathieu Perrault celebrates: