Capitals beat Jets, clinch division title

Alex Ovechkin of the Capitals (left) battles Jets defenceman Grant Clitsome during NHL action in...

Alex Ovechkin of the Capitals (left) battles Jets defenceman Grant Clitsome during NHL action in Washington on Tuesday, April 23, 2013. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

KIRK PENTON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:31 PM ET

WASHINGTON - The Washington Capitals locked up their fifth Southeast Division title in six years tonight and all but eliminated the Winnipeg Jets from NHL playoff contention all at the same time.

The Capitals broke a 2-2 tie with a pair of goals late in the second period and held on for a 5-3 victory to ensure they will be the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference when the playoffs begin next week.

The smoking hot Capitals won for the 14th time in their last 17 games. Their hot streak started when they went into Winnipeg on March 21 and won back-to-back games to get to within five points of the Jets, who were leading the Southeast at the time.

Now the Jets (24-20-3) are in huge trouble when it comes to the playoff picture. They remain in ninth place in the Eastern Conference, one point back of the New York Rangers and Ottawa Senators, but they have just one game left, on Thursday at home against Montreal.

Even worse for the Jets is the Senators and Rangers have two and one game in hand, respectively.


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