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NHL - US Sports: Capitals keeping the faith

After scoring a hat-trick to help the Washington Capitals beat the Vancouver Canucks 4-3 in overtime on Friday, forward Evgeny Kuznetsov declared the Capitals have full belief in each other.

Washington, 22/1 to win the Stanley Cup in 2021/22, gave up a two-goal lead in the third period, but recovered from 3-2 down to prevail over the in-form Canucks with Kuznetsov completing his hat-trick to tie the game on the powerplay with 4.53 remaining.

Caps maintain Wild Card push

Lars Eller scored the game-winner in the extra period to give the Capitals a fourth win in the past five games (4-0-1) and improve their season record to 32-18-10 which ranks fourth in the Metropolitan Division. 

Washington currently hold the second Wild Card spot to qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Division.

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The 29-year-old Kuznetsov has scored seven points (four goals, three assists) in a five-game point streak taking his season total to 57 points (19 goals, 38 assists) in 57 games.

The centreman has spent his entire nine-season NHL career with Washington, producing 475 points (148 goals, 327 assists) in 577 regular season games. 

In the Stanley Cup playoffs, he has appeared 81 times with 62 points (27 goals, 35 assists).

Caps still believe

Kuznetsov finished second to teammate Alex Ovechkin in voting for the playoff MVP when he scored 32 points (12 goals, 20 assists) in 24 playoff games to help Washington win the Stanley Cup for the first time in 2018.

He said to the media after the comeback win over Vancouver: "Nobody was panicking, nobody was reaching. It was always positive. We always believe in each other."

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