WASHINGTON (AP) — Travis Konecny scored just over a minute after a questionable video review wiped out a goal, and the Philadelphia Flyers beat the Washington Capitals 5-2 on Wednesday night to extend their winning streak to seven games. Just 71 seconds after referee Peter MacDougall said there was “no conclusive evidence” to show the puck crossed the goal line underneath goaltender Braden Holtby, Konecny hammered the puck into the back of the net for his 24th of the season. He celebrated as if he scored twice.
The Flyers actually scored three times in 10 minutes to flip momentum in a showdown of the top teams in the Metropolitan Division. Additional goals by Kevin Hayes and Tyler Pitlick during that run, one each by Ivan Provorov and Scott Laughton in the third and 25 saves from Brian Elliott helped Philadelphia move within one point of first-place Washington.
With 15 games left for each team, the race to the finish could be just as feisty as their final matchup of the regular season. Capitals winger Tom Wilson dished out a few big hits and fought twice — against Flyers newcomer Nate Thompson and then rugged defenseman Robert Hagg.
Penalties handcuffed the Capitals, continuing a season-long trend. They lead the NHL in minor penalties, and a streak of three in under five minutes in the second period allowed the Flyers to tie the score and take the lead.
Lars Eller opened the scoring for Washington, and Wilson set up Garnet Hathaway for its second goal of the game. Provorov wired a wrist shot past Holtby with 13:24 left in the third to give the Flyers some breathing room and Laughton banked the puck off a defender to ice it as they improved to 3-0-1 against the Capitals this season.
Philadelphia keeps rolling but might be without James van Riemsdyk for some time after the winger took a puck to the right hand in the first. Coach Alain Vigneault said van Riemsdyk had an X-ray and “it doesn’t look real good.”
The fourth installment of Flyers-Capitals in 2019-20 lived up to some early March hype. Vigneault on Tuesday reached out to Capitals assistant Scott Arniel, who worked on his staff with the Rangers. Vigneault texted Arniel, “Did you hear it was a big game?”
The result turned out to be the Flyers’ 10th victory in 12 games, which began with a 7-2 pasting of the Capitals in the same building on Feb. 8. They went into that game in sixth place and nine points back, but have since vaulted up the standings.
NOTES: Flyers trade-deadline acquisition Derek Grant had two assists. … Laughton’s 13th goal of the season set a career high. … Washington went 0 for 5 on the power play. … Capitals winger T.J. Oshie played his 800th regular-season NHL game. … Michal Kempny was a healthy scratch for the first time this season as Washington continues to figure out its mix on defense.
Flyers host the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday night.
Capitals travel to face the New York Rangers on Thursday night.
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