Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov said before the 2022 NHL All-Star Game that the Metropolitan Division would do everything they could to win the title. They did just that and more, topping the Central Division in the final after a strong win over the Pacific to win the ASG.
Kuznetsov opened the scoring in the final, going on a 2-on-1 with Zach Werenski and electing to shoot before firing a quick shot past Cam Talbot to make it 1-0 just 27 seconds into the championship game.
so smooth pic.twitter.com/0ur9ng6Ysi
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) February 5, 2022
It was Kuznetsov’s first goal of the game and second point of the tournament after he assisted on Tom Wilson’s goal in the first game against the Pacific. Wilson’s goal made All-Star history with the fastest goal in the 3-on-3 tournament, breaking Sidney Crosby’s record of 15 seconds from 2019.
Clayton Keller responded for the Central soon after, but Claude Giroux, Chris Kreider then scored to make it 3-1. Nazem Kadri pulled the Central within one before Jack Hughes restored the two-goal lead with his third of the tournament heading into the final period.
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Joe Pavelski would strike early in the second to make it a 4-3 game. Soon after, Claude Giroux scored his second of the title game to make it 5-3. Alex DeBrincat scored late to make it 5-4, but his goal was waved off and deemed offsides. The Metro then held on for the 5-3 win, with Wilson and Kuznetsov on the ice for the final buzzer.
That’s the second title game that Wilson has been on the ice for the final seconds at T-Mobile Arena. The last time was for Game 5 the 2018 Stanley Cup Final back when the Capitals topped Vegas for the championship in 2018.
Both Kuznetsov and Wilson ended the NHL All-Star Game with a title, and also found the scoresheet to boot. It comes after a decent showing for both at the 2022 NHL All-Star Skills Competition, where Kuznetsov finished last in the fastest skater contest while Wilson passed the century mark but finished third in the hardest shot.
With the win, the Metro Division is taking home $1,000,000.