WASHINGTON — For more than two periods, the game was about possible retribution for a week-old goal celebration by Alex Ovechkin.
Then, with the score tied in the third, the player whose career was nearly ended by a concussion scored his first goal in the more than a year, an emotional moment that brought the Verizon Center to its feet.
Brian Pothier’s slap shot with 15:30 remaining proved to be the winning goal, and the Washington Capitals maintained their dominance over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday night with a 5-3 victory.
Ovechkin scored his 52nd and 53rd goals — and did nothing over-the-top after the puck went in either time — and added two assists for the Capitals.
DETROIT — Joey MacDonald made 42 saves for his first NHL shutout, and Frans Nielsen and Josh Bailey scored goals in the lowly Islanders’ victory over Detroit.
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Paul Gaustad scored midway through the third period to help Buffalo avoid a second-half meltdown in a victory over Toronto.