Ducks’ Aberg Shocks Capitals with 2 Goals in the 3rd

WASHINGTON — Pontus Aberg scored twice in the third period, including the go-ahead goal with 5:05 remaining, and the Anaheim Ducks stopped Washington’s seven-game win streak by rallying for a 6-5 victory over the Capitals on Sunday.

The Ducks trailed 5-1 in the second, but put together an impressive comeback to earn their fourth consecutive victory. Ryan Getzlaf had a goal and two assists and Rickard Rakell had a goal and an assist in the finale of a five-game trip.

Anaheim became the first NHL team to overcome a four-goal deficit on the road to win in regulation since Colorado accomplished the feat against Florida on March 3, 1999. It was the second time in franchise history that the Ducks overcame a four-goal deficit to win in any fashion, joining a 5-4 overtime victory against Winnipeg on March 31, 2014.

Evgeny Kuznetsov and Chandler Stephenson each had a goal and an assist for Washington, which chased John Gibson after scoring three times in the first part of the first period.

It was Anaheim’s highest-scoring game of the season. Ryan Miller stopped 18 of 20 shots for the win.

Aberg’s ninth goal of the season came moments after Anaheim killed off Washington’s fifth power play of the game, and resulted from a turnover in the neutral zone.

Pontus Aberg Anaheim Ducks
Anaheim Ducks left wing Pontus Aberg (Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports)

Kiefer Sherwood took the puck into the right corner of the Ducks’ attacking zone and tried to feed Getzlaf in front. With Caps goaltender Braden Holtby coming out of his crease, Getzlaf failed to make solid contact.

But Aberg was first to the loose puck, where he easily guided it into an open goal from a few feet out.

Down 5-1, Andrew Cogliano and Rakell scored even-strength goals 55 seconds apart in the second period. Aberg and Hampus Lindholm then converted on back-to-back power plays 1:45 apart to tie it at 5-5 midway through the third.

Nicklas Backstrom, Tom Wilson and Nic Dowd also scored for the Capitals, and John Carlson had two assists. Holtby made 20 saves.

NOTES: Washington’s opening goal was the 219th of Backstrom’s career, moving him ahead of Mike Ridley for fourth on the Capitals’ scoring list. … With his denial of Ondrej Kase with 7:57 left in the first period, Holtby became the second goaltender in Washington history to reach 10,000 saves. Olaf Kolzig had 18,013 for the Caps across 16 seasons. … Getzlaf now has points in six of his last eight games (four goals, six assists). … Aberg also picked up an assist on Getzlaf’s goal in the first.


Ducks: Begin a four-game homestand on Wednesday against Chicago.

Capitals: Start a three-game road trip with a Stanley Cup rematch Tuesday at Vegas.

Ian Quillen, The Associated Press