WASHINGTON — Max Pacioretty had two goals and an assist to help the Montreal Canadiens break a three-game losing streak with a 3-2 win over the Washington Capitals on Friday night.
Paul Byron also scored for the Canadiens. Antii Niemi, playing in place of Carey Price, who had been in goal for eight consecutive games, stopped 24 shots.
John Carlson and Lars Eller scored for the Capitals, and Philipp Grubauer finished with 22 saves.
Pacioretty, who has six goals in the last six games, scored Montreal’s first goal at 7:08 in the second period and added an empty-netter with 1:18 remaining in the game.
Byron’s 13th of the season, midway through the third period, put the Canadiens ahead 2-1.
The Capitals, who returned from a five-day bye with an overtime loss at New Jersey on Thursday night, have lost back-to-back games for the second time this season.
Montreal took a 1-0 lead when Pacioretty scored just 14 seconds into a power play at 7:08 in the second period.
Washington tied it on a power-play goal of their own when Carlson’s slap shot at 13:24 of the second beat Niemi. Carlson has six goals this season — three on power plays. Alex Ovechkin received his 499th career assist on the goal.
Eller closed the scoring in the final minute.
NOTES: Washington F Andre Burakovsky was active. He had been inactive in four of the previous six games. Coach Barry Trotz said that he was scratched Jan. 12 because of the flu. “All of a sudden, he had the (five-day) break, and he hadn’t skated in forever,” Trotz said. … F Logan Shaw played his first game for Montreal. Shaw was claimed on waivers from Anaheim Jan. 15. … Canadiens F Phillip Danault missed his third straight game with concussion-like symptoms. … The Capitals observed a moment of silence in memory of longtime hockey writer, Red Fisher, who covered the Canadiens for 58 years. Fisher died Friday at 91.
Canadiens: Host Boston Saturday night.
Capitals: Host Philadelphia Sunday.