Sharks Outlast Capitals – Hertl Completes Hat Trick in OT

WASHINGTON — Tomas Hertl completed his hat trick by scoring in overtime, and the San Jose Sharks withstood Alex Ovechkin’s hat trick to beat the Washington Capitals 7-6 on Tuesday night and hand the defending Stanley Cup champions their sixth consecutive defeat.

Tomas Hertl, Braden Holtby
San Jose Sharks Tomas Hertl celebrates his game-winning goal for a hat trick past Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Hertl scored 2:48 into the 3-on-3 session, and a handful of hats were tossed onto the ice. Many more cascaded down earlier after Ovechkin’s third hat trick this season and 23rd of his career, but that came in a losing effort because of Evander Kane’s dramatic goal that helped the Sharks end their three-game skid.

With goaltender Martin Jones pulled for an extra attacker, Kane beat Braden Holtby with a second left in regulation for his second of the night. Holtby allowed seven goals on 43 shots in what was not one of the All-Star goalie’s finest performances.

Joe Pavelski and Logan Couture also scored for San Jose, which has allowed six goals in each of its past four games. Jones gave up six goals on 39 shots but was bailed out by Kane and Hertl in a game that turned into a scoring fest.

Joe Pavelski San Jose Sharks
San Jose Sharks Joe Pavelski celebrates his goal with the Sharks bench. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Ovechkin scored goal Nos. 34, 35 and 36 of the season to pad his NHL-leading total and also assisted on T.J. Oshie’s goal. He’s one point from tying former teammate and Hockey Hall of Famer Sergei Fedorov for the most points among Russian-born players.

Ovechkin scored on a rebound on the power play, a wrist shot that somehow sneaked past Jones and a one-timer off the rush. He has 643 goals, good for sole possession of 14th on the career list.

Andre Burakovsky and Evgeny Kuznetsov also scored for Washington, which lost six in a row for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

NOTES: Kuznetsov’s goal was just his second at 5-on-5 this season. … Pavelski’s goal matched the third-fastest to start a game in Sharks history. … Two-time Norris Trophy-winning Sharks D Erik Karlsson returned to California for further tests on his lower-body injury. Karlsson missed the past three games but is still a candidate to take part in All-Star Weekend in San Jose. … Sharks D Marc-Edouard Vlasic missed his ninth consecutive game with a wrist injury. Coach Peter DeBoer said Vlasic could have played if it were a playoff game but the team decided to play it safe with an extended break coming up … F Devante Smith-Pelly, F Nic Dowd and D Madison Bowey were healthy scratches for Washington.


Sharks: Get a long layoff with the All-Star break and bye week before hosting the Arizona Coyotes on Feb. 2.

Capitals: Face a short turnaround in visiting the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday.


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Stephen Whyno, The Associated Press