MONTREAL — Devante Smith-Pelly scored in the third period to lift the Washington Capitals to a 4-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens in a penalty-filled NHL pre-season game on Wednesday night.
The Capitals led by two goals in the first period through Evgeny Kuznetsov and Jakub Vrana before Chares Hudon and captain Max Pacioretty levelled the score in the second.
Former Canadien Smith-Pelly scored the winner with 5:54 remaining on the clock when he deflected Connor Hobbs' point shot over Charlie Lindgren, who lost sight of the puck.
Tom Wilson added a fourth for Washington into an empty net.
Carey Price, in his first game of the pre-season, allowed two goals on 10 shots before being replaced by Lindgren at 9:22 of the second period. Lindgren made 10 saves in relief.
Philipp Grubauer stopped 20 of 21 shots. His replacement Pheonix Copley made 21 saves.
Montreal outshot Washington 43-22.
Special teams were the difference on Wednesday as the first four goals of the game were scored on the power play.
Kuznetsov got the visitors on the board at 5:07 of the first as he danced around Habs defenceman Mark Streit to move clear on goal.
Vrana made it 2-0 when his centering pass deflected off Brandon Davidson's stick into the roof of the net.
Hudon got one back for the Canadiens at 1:16 of the second on a one-timer in the slot off a perfect feed from defenceman Victor Mete.
Ales Hemsky found Pacioretty all alone next to Copley's goal with a precise saucer pass at 11:37 of the middle frame for the easy equalizer.
The Capitals took nine minor penalties in the game to Montreal's four.
It was the first official game in a Canadiens uniform for 22-year-old forward Jonathan Drouin, who was traded for defensive prospect Mikhail Sergachev in the off-season.
Andrew Shaw (neck) and Noah Juulsen (foot) were not in the lineup for the Canadiens. Both players were injured in Montreal's first pre-season game on Monday.