Fehr-weather Caps beat Pens 3-1 in rainy Classic
PITTSBURGH (AP) - Eric Fehr upstaged stars Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin by scoring twice and the Washington Capitals waded through rain drops to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-1 in a wet Winter Classic on Saturday night.
“It was raining pretty good out there,” Fehr said. “But it was a perfect night.”
The game was originally scheduled for 1:00 p.m. EST, before the NHL pushed back the start because of the rain threat. Neither team seemed to mind, and the Capitals _ led by an animated and motivated Ovechkin _ clearly enjoyed the prime-time stage.
The Capitals, perennial playoff underachievers, warmed up to this big game.
After a scoreless first period in which the two teams adjusted to playing outdoors at night _ many never had at any organized level _ and the choppy ice, the Penguins took a 1-0 lead. Malkin took Kris Letang’s banked pass off the boards to beat Varlamov inside the near post at 2:15.
Pittsburgh couldn’t maintain the momentum, though, as the Capitals held down Crosby, who went scoreless for a second successive game after posting at least one point in 25 consecutive games. He had five shots.
The Capitals, who lost at home to Pittsburgh 3-2 in a shootout on Dec. 23, tied it about 4 1/2 minutes later when Knuble shoveled a shot past Fleury amid a tumble of bodies in the crease. Zbynek Michalek upended Mike Green just to the right of Fleury, and Knuble took advantage of the confusion to score his ninth.
Fehr _ pronounced Fair _ gave Washington the lead at 14:45 of the second on a gift goal. Fleury went behind the net to play the puck, but Marcus Johansson beat him to it and fed it in front, where Fehr tipped it into an empty net.