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WASHINGTON -- For nearly four years, Washington Capitals fans have watched video clips of Evgeny Kuznetsov playing in Russia and imagined what he could do in the NHL. On Friday night, Kuznetsov began compiling the North American version of his greatest hits -- posting three assists for his first NHL points in the Capitals 4-3 win over the Vancouver Canucks. Kuznetsov assisted during a power play as countryman Alex Ovechkin finished with a slap shot for his NHL-leading 45th goal. Less than five minutes later, Kuznetsov faked a slap shot from the wing and fed the puck to Tom Wilson for his third goal. In the third period, Kuznetsov started a sequence that led to Mike Green putting the Capitals ahead for good with 9:41 left. Green scored with a slap shot off a feed from Nicklas Backstrom from behind the net. "(Kuznetsov) did a great job battling down the corner and keeping control of the puck," said Green, who scored his ninth goal. "He made a great play to Nicky, and I noticed when Nicky was wheeling the net that he saw me before he even looked up." It was the third NHL game for Kuznetsov, the Capitals first-round pick in the 2010 draft. He signed with Washington last week after five years in Russias Kontinental Hockey League. "You get your first point on the power play, which is kind of an easy point, but it still counts," Washington coach Adam Oates said. "You get your juices going. Great play on the second goal, and then protecting the puck on a cycle (on the third goal), which is kind of something you dont necessarily expect." Kuznetsov played on Washingtons fourth line with fellow rookie Wilson and Jay Beagle, who contributed an assist. "He is such a creative player and a lot of fun to play with," Wilson said. "The first couple of games he wasnt sure, and hes really finding his groove. Hopefully we can have some chemistry for years to come." Kuznetsovs performance helped the Capitals forget the 12th time this season theyve blown a two-goal advantage. Washington led 3-1 early in the third period before Shawn Matthias and Nicklas Jensen scored for Vancouver to tie it. The goal by Jensen, a rookie playing in his sixth game, was the first of his NHL career. "I just felt we were just going to keep on coming," Vancouver coach John Tortorella said. "Theyve given up some leads here. We got that third one, I thought we were just going to take off. We had some chances." Vancouver outshot Washington 41-21, but the Capitals killed all seven Canucks power plays. Jaroslav Halak made 38 saves in his fourth start with the Capitals. "He had a fantastic night," Oates said. "We left him hanging." Jordan Schroeder scored Vancouvers first goal, and Chris Higgins and Christopher Tanev both had two assists. Eddie Lack stopped 17 shots as Vancouver fell to 3-12-1 in its last 16 games. "Its frustrating. I thought we played really well all game," Matthias said. "To tie it up there and let that happen, its upsetting." The night got off to a difficult start for the Canucks, whose bus broke down. Players then took cabs to the arena. Joel Ward opened the scoring for Washington, but the second period belonged to Kuznetsov. "Hes sort of got that young mentality where you know youre not afraid to make a play and do these things that youre capable of," Green said. "Hes going to be a great player." NOTES: The Canucks learned on Friday they will be without C Ryan Kesler for two weeks. Kesler, who leads the team with 22 goals, injured his knee in a 3-2 shootout victory on Wednesday over Winnipeg. ... The International Olympic Committee ruled that Backstrom wasnt at fault for his positive drug test before the gold-medal game at the Olympics, in which he didnt play, and he will receive the silver medal he earned with Sweden. Jose Cruz Jr. Astros Jersey . Off-Season Game Plan examines a team facing some challenging times as GM Bryan Murray tries to put together a roster for next season. Perhaps the first challenge facing Murray is that its expected he will be moving out Jason Spezza, a premier point producer who is about to enter the final year of his contract. George Springer Astros Jersey . The 23-year-old Neustaedter will move at the end of the season when his contract with Moenchengladbach expires. He signed a four-year deal with Schalke. http://www.baseballastrosproshop.com/jos...-astros-jersey/. -- Hal Steinbrenner says Alex Rodriguez is "a great player" and "obviously an asset," but the New York Yankees managing general partner wouldnt discuss the third basemans possible return to the team following a season-long suspension. Roy Oswalt Jersey . The Henry Burris-led squad finished second in the East Division before advancing to the Grey Cup where they ultimately fell to the home field advantage wielding Saskatchewan Roughriders. Carlos Gomez Astros Jersey . Edwin Encarnacion carried the torch for two days at Fenway Park this week; Melky Cabrera and Jose Bautista have had their moments; lately Anthony Gose has contributed.NEW YORK -- Eduardo Nunezs time with the Yankees ended after a decade when the infielder was traded to the Minnesota Twins for left-hander Miguel Sulbaran. The deal was announced Monday. The Twins assigned Nunez to Triple-A Rochester. Signed by the Yankees in 2004, Nunez came up to the major leagues in 2010 and was seen as a possible successor to Derek Jeter at shortstop. But he struggled defensively, was beaten out by Yangervis Soolarte during spring training for a backup infield job and was designated for assignment last week.dddddddddddd. The 26-year-old Nunez hit .267 in 270 games for the Yankees with 10 homers and 76 RBIs. The 20-year-old Sulbaran was 9-4 with a 2.96 ERA last year at Class A Great Lakes and Cedar Rapids. 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