Caps' Ovechkin, Orlov cleared to return from COVID list

Second-period meltdown leaves Islanders pointless after two games in Washington

"So you know, I feel ready".

Turned out to be pure jubilation.

Alex Ovechkin and Dmitry Orlov have been cleared to return from the COVID-19 list and could play against Boston, according to NHL.com's Tom Gulitti.

After Ovechkin missed the previous four games because of COVID-19 protocols, the high-scoring forward showed his career-long flair for the dramatic by beating Tuukka Rask with a flawless shot 28 seconds into overtime. The man who first hoisted the Stanley Cup when Boston won for the first time in 39 years back in 2011. In the process, Washington's captain tied Hall of Famer Mike Gartner for seventh on the career goal-scoring list with his 708th.

On Saturday, Laviolette sounded very much like a coach whose team is going through a tremendous amount of adversity and just wants to keep collecting points in the standings. "I think these are two really good teams, playing for two points that are going to be out there tomorrow to grab", Chara said.

Of course, Ovechkin didn't do it alone. Ovechkin has totaled seven points (two goals, five assists) through five games, making the veteran winger a must-start player across all fantasy formats. Chara - who doesn't wear a visor - took a puck to the face late in the first period but returned for the second and didn't miss a shift.

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Fans have seen their team climb out of three-goal holes over the years, but with this depleted roster against an Islanders squad who'd held them to eight goals in five playoff games, it looked bleak. The Bruins own the NHL's best shot different; they generate an average of 32.5 shots on net a night to rank fifth, and they've allowed the second fewest shots against (22.9 per game).

"We made a few mistakes, " Cassidy said. That'll contribute a bit to it, but at the end of the day I thought we were trying to get inside, trying to get to the net.

David Pastrnak, who tied Ovechkin for the most goals in the league last season, made his season debut following off-season surgery to fix a torn labrum in his right hip. Boston dominated Saturday's first period, pouring 19 shots at Caps goaltender Vitek Vanecek and out-attempting Washington by a lopsided 29-12. "We had a lot of opportunities".

Forward Conor Sheary scored his first two goals as a Capital in Thursday's win.

The Bruins, 5-2-2, saw their four-game win streak ended but welcomed back forward David Pastrnak, who had an assist and played more than 20 minutes in his season debut after having hip surgery in September. "That's why he's been around for so long and he's been so successful".

This will mark the first meeting between the Bruins and former captain Zdeno Chara. He missed these four because he joined his three fellow Russian teammates unmasked in a hotel room, which is a violation of the league's pandemic protocols. Kuznetsov and Samsonov are still sidelined.

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