Unable to stop the New York Rangers all night, Alex Ovechkin and the slumping Washington Capitals could only put up a fight with their fists.
Artem Anisimov scored the first of three Rangers goals during a 3 1/2-minute span early in the second period, and New York routed the frustrated Capitals 7-0 last night.
Henrik Lundqvist made 31 saves for his fifth shutout this season and Ryan Callahan scored twice in the third period as the Rangers handed visiting Washington its sixth consecutive defeat.
"I think we just have to relax," said Ovechkin, who got in a rare fight in the second period. "I know it is huge pressure for us right now. Six games in a row. It's big pressure for our players and coaches. We just have to relax and not think about the losing streak."
Mired in a scoring slump, Ovechkin went toe-to-toe with New York's Brandon Dubinsky in the second period. The two-time MVP left the game in the third period after being hit by a shot, but said afterward his knee was "OK."
Ovechkin threw a hip check on Dan Girardi in the offensive zone, then skated up ice and dropped his gloves to go at Dubinsky, who landed multiple overhand rights before wrestling Ovechkin to the ice. The Capitals' captain was booed every time he touched the puck following the fight.
Marian Gaborik and Dubinsky also scored early in the second to put the Rangers ahead 4-0. Marc Staal added a shorthanded goal later in the period.
Washington, a preseason Stanley Cup favorite, has dropped six in a row for the first time since March 2007. The last time the Capitals lost to the Rangers by at least seven goals was an 11-4 setback in March 1978.
"I don't have an answer right now. It is unfamiliar territory. I think we have a lot of people feeling sorry for themselves," Caps coach Bruce Boudreau said. "As you can tell, when you get down, teams aren't feeling sorry for you. They're pushing it on, piling it on. We have to find a way to get out of this, that's all."
In other games:
* At Anaheim, Corey Perry scored on a penalty shot while recording his first career hat trick, Ryan Getzlaf had two goals and Bobby Ryan also found the net, powering the Ducks to a 6-2 victory over the Minnesota Wild. It was the third game this season in which each member of the Ducks' top line scored.