Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov played the best game of his young career against the Edmonton Oilers on Friday night. Kuzy tallied three goals–his first NHL hat trick–and two assists in the Caps’ 7-4 win. The five points were a career high (in the NHL).
The young Russian’s trio of goals covered all the bases. There was a beautiful tic-tac-toe with linemates TJ Oshie and Alexander Ovechkin, a breakaway off a perfect feed from John Carlson (and a pretty bad play at center ice by Oilers defenseman J. Schultz (no, not that one), and a power-play snipe to close out the third period.
For his efforts on the ice, Kuzy earned a shaving cream pie from his locker room heckler, Alex Ovechkin.
Yes, that’s Ovi yelling “Wooooooo!!!! Evgeny! Kuznetsov!”
Kuznetsov’s breakout game came on the same day head coach Barry Trotz praised him, noting that Kuzy “wants to be one of the best guys in the game, and I think he can be.”
“He’s a sponge,” Trotz said. “He processes a lot of things. He can make a lot of things happen individually, collectively as a group. He’s getting better at every aspect of the game.”
We certainly saw that on Friday night.
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) October 24, 2015
A photo posted by Washington Capitals (@washingtoncaps) on
Additional reporting by Nathan Burchfiel.
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