Power play leaves Caps out in cold in loss to Jets 3 extra-man goals lift Winnipeg, 6-2

October 27, 1992|By Tim Campbell | Tim Campbell,Special to The Sun

WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- It's not the first crack that has appeared in the Washington Capitals' game this season, but this one hurt.

The Caps gave up three power-play goals last night and it cost them dearly, losing 6-2 to the Winnipeg Jets before 11,409 at Winnipeg Arena.

The defeat dropped Washington to 3-6-0 in the young season, last in the Patrick Division.

It was the second straight night the Jets had fallen behind, 2-0, after 20 minutes, only to recover and win. Friday, the Jets erased a similar deficit with three second-period goals to beat the Los Angeles Kings.

Winning back-to-back games for the first time this season, Winnipeg scored two of their four second-period goals with the man advantage. The Caps had given up only four power-play goals before last night's game.

Keith Tkachuk salted the game away with two third-period goals, one on the power play.

Down 2-0, the Jets came from the locker room after the first intermission and faced some dangerous chances. Goalie Jim Hrivnak just got his right toe on rookie Teemu Selanne's semi-breakaway and a short time later, with Kevin Hatcher in the penalty box for boarding, Fredrik Olausson's one-timer point shot rang solidly off the crossbar and out.

Winnipeg finally hit the board seven minutes into the middle frame while the teams were playing four skaters a side. Troy Murray took the puck through center and put a shift on Caps defenseman Sylvain Cote. With Cote leaning inside, Murray went quickly outside and in alone on Hrivnak, putting a shot under the goalie that barely slid across the goal line.

Two minutes later, the Jets tied it on a goal by Russian Evgeny Davydov. Countryman Alexei Zhamnov carried the puck deep and left it for Davydov in the slot. His quick backhand just caught the top corner behind Hrivnak's catching glove.

The Jets kept the pressure on, forcing Hrivnak to save Tkachuk's 20-foot blast. Seconds later, Selanne rattled one off the goal post. The Caps then took a pair of costly penalties, Al Iafrate going off for slashing and Rod Langway getting called for elbowing. It left the Jets with an 18-second two-man advantage and Selanne put Winnipeg in the lead seven seconds before Iafrate's penalty expired.

It was the rookie's ninth goal of the season, best among NHL freshmen. The Jets made the penalties very costly, scoring again before Langway's sentence was up. Davydov pulled the trigger to make it 4-2, finding the open net from 10 feet after some crisp passing.

The Caps dominated the first period, sending 23 shots at Jets goalie Bob Essensa, many of them on four power plays. Washington opened the scoring 15 minutes in with Peter Bondra's eighth goal of the season. Fighting free in front of the Winnipeg net, Bondra redirected Dale Hunter's short centering feed through Essensa's pads.

And just 22 seconds from the first intermission, former Jet Paul MacDermid shoved in the Caps' second goal. After Jets defenseman Igor Ulanov over-skated the puck behind the net, Bondra popped it into the slot where MacDermid and Kevin Miller had whacks at it. Ulanov recovered enough to get back in front, but a rebound went off his foot in the crease, where MacDermid was waiting to make sure it was across the line.

Before the Ulanov miscue, the Jets had just finished killing off a two-men-short situation for 60 seconds.

NOTES: Four goals had been the Caps critical number up to last night. Scoring four or more, they're unbeaten in three games. Three or less and the Caps have lost five of five. . . . At 91.3 percent efficiency, the Caps penalty killing was ranked second in the NHL heading into last night's game, having allowed only four power-play goals.

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