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Caps Shut Down Habs

One night after Washington had its home winning streak ended, the Capitals went out and stopped the Montreal Canadiens' seven-game winning streak.

Olaf Kolzig made 21 saves for his fifth shutout of the season as Washington beat Montreal 3-0 Saturday night.

"We didn't play a good game tonight," Canadiens forward Benoit Brunet said. "After seven wins in a row, we came out flat and maybe we were overconfident."

Kolzig, who shut out Montreal 1-0 at the Molson Centre on Feb. 10 to hand the Canadiens' their last loss, got his 16th career shutout.

The Capitals had been 11-0-2 in their last 13 home games before losing 3-0 to Boston on Friday night.

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  • "That was more important than people probably realize," Kolzig said. "We were eventually going to lose at home. I think the way we lost last night left a sour taste in our mouth and we knew the way (the Canadiens) have been playing the last two weeks that it wasn't a given that we were going to win here."

    Chris Simon and Terry Yake scored power-play goals for the Capitals, while Calle Johansson also scored.

    Simon scored his team-leading 22nd goal 11:33 into the second and Yake tapped in a rebound just under five minutes later for his sixth goal. Johansson scored his sixth of the season 14:21 into the third as the Capitals ended their season series against Montreal 3-1.

    "We were excited for this game," Simon said. "We had a bad game (Friday) against Boston. We didn't play very well as a team, so tonight we knew that we wanted to play a full 60 minutes. We knew that (the Canadiens) had been on a roll and we knew that we'd better be ready for this gme or we probably would have been embarrassed like we were last night."

    Montreal remains winless in nine home games (0-8-1) against Washington since the opening of the Molson Centre in March 1996.

    "I think every team just has certain teams' numbers, and for whatever reason, at the Molson Centre, we just have the Canadiens' number," Kolzig said.

    The Capitals have gone 17-4-3 since Jan. 8.

    Montreal's winning streak was tied for second-longest in the NHL this season, one short of Phoenix's eight-game streak from Nov. 16 to Dec. 2. The New York Rangers also had a seven-game winning streak from January 15 to 25.

    Montreal has gone 13-3-2-2 since Jan. 11 to climb back into contention for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

    Washington forward Jan Bulis left the game with a dislocated left shoulder after he fell heavily into the boards in front of the Capitals' bench early in the second.

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