Washington had scored only seven times in five previous games, losing four.
Alex Ovechkin got the Capitals going with his 350th NHL goal, scored 19 seconds in, and Troy Brouwer, Marcus Johansson and Matthieu Perrault had a goal and an assist each as Washington beat Buffalo at home for the seventh time in eight games.
Cody Hodgson scored twice for the Sabres, who have lost five straight road games and have won just once in seven games overall.
Off the ice, the Sabres were also an unhappy group. Wing Patrick Kaleta was eligible to play for the first time since being suspended for five games for hitting the Rangers' Brad Richards from behind, but he was a healthy scratch.
Kaleta was screaming his disgust on the ice during the morning skate, the Buffalo News reported. He later told reporters, "I'm (ticked) off. I want to play. And especially after watching some things, sitting there watching the game."
Coach Ron Rolston said he sat Kaleta because he didn't want to disrupt his current line combinations but also said, "It's a situation where he understands that sitting out five games for him wasn't a good thing and it wasn't a good thing for our team."
After the game, goalie Ryan Miller said Kaleta had to " get over it and move on."
"That's just drama, and he needs to just grow up," Miller said. "He had a stupid play in a game. He sat, he was punished."
Game highlights: Sidney Crosby scored his 13th goal, Joe Vitale added his first in more than a year, and Tomas Vokoun stopped 31 shots as the Penguins moved into first in the Eastern Conference with their ninth straight win, 2-1 over the Bruins. Pittsburgh All-Star defenseman Kris Letang left the game late in the first period and didn't return with what the team said was a lower-body injury. Teammates said he aggravated a leg problem. He was to be evaluated, coach Dan Bylsma said. … Jakob Silfverberg scored twice to lead the host Senators to a 4-1 win over Jets, a victory that ended Ottawa's streak of 11 straight one-goal games.
First Period—1, Washington, Ovechkin 11 (Johansson, Backstrom), :19. Penalties—Hillen, Was (hooking), 9:53.
Second Period—2, Buffalo, Hodgson 11 (Vanek, Pominville), :12. 3, Washington, Brouwer 10 (Ribeiro, Backstrom), 5:06 (pp). 4, Washington, Chimera 1 (Brouwer, Ribeiro), 9:45. 5, Washington, Johansson 3 (Perreault, Ward), 10:28. 6, Buffalo, Flynn 3 (Foligno, Ennis), 13:27. Penalties—Myers, Buf (holding), 3:52; Ehrhoff, Buf (tripping), 19:02.
Third Period—7, Buffalo, Hodgson 12 (Ennis, Pominville), 5:30 (pp). 8, Washington, Perreault 5 (Ward), 15:05. Penalties—Ott, Buf (roughing), 2:11; Ovechkin, Was (roughing), 2:11; Chimera, Was (slashing), 4:55; Leino, Buf (tripping), 7:53; Oleksy, Was (roughing), 12:48; Ott, Buf (unsportsmanlike conduct), 18:40. Shots on Goal—Buffalo 5-17-8—30. Washington 5-10-10—25. Power-play opportunities—Buffalo 1 of 3; Washington 1 of 4. Goalies—Buffalo, Miller 9-13-4 (25 shots-20 saves). Washington, Holtby 10-9-0 (30-27).
First Period—None. Penalties—C.Smith, Nas (roughing), 14:10.
Second Period—1, Edmonton, Paajarvi 6 (Eberle, Whitney), 8:11 (pp). 2, Nashville, Weber 5 (Josi, C.Smith), 16:37 (pp). Penalties—Ellis, Nas (cross-checking), 7:18; Hemsky, Edm (holding stick), 11:49; N.Schultz, Edm (slashing), 15:09.
Third Period—3, Edmonton, Petrell 2 (Gagner), 10:53 (sh). 4, Edmonton, Eberle 7 (Hall, Petry), 15:48. 5, Nashville, Josi 4 (Fisher, Butler), 19:50. Penalties—J.Schultz, Edm (delay of game), 9:30; N.Schultz, Edm (hooking), 16:15. Shots on Goal—Nashville 10-7-14—31. Edmonton 6-10-5—21. Power-play opportunities—Nashville 1 of 4; Edmonton 1 of 2. Goalies—Nashville, Rinne 10-9-5 (21 shots-18 saves). Edmonton, Dubnyk 8-9-5 (31-29).
First Period—1, Ottawa, Latendresse 2 (Alfredsson, Smith), 3:44. 2, Ottawa, Silfverberg 5 (Gonchar, Neil), 18:39 (pp). Penalties—Wheeler, Wpg (slashing), 9:59; Thorburn, Wpg (hooking), 17:42.
Second Period—None. Penalties—Zibanejad, Ott (tripping), 8:56.
Third Period—3, Winnipeg, Bogosian 2 (Hainsey, Ladd), 3:26. 4, Ottawa, Turris 8 (Alfredsson, Gonchar), 11:30 (pp). 5, Ottawa, Silfverberg 6 (Zibanejad, Benoit), 12:45. Penalties—Turris, Ott (tripping), 5:48; Byfuglien, Wpg (goaltender interference), 8:03; Hainsey, Wpg (delay of game), 10:49; Gryba, Ott (slashing), 16:06. Shots on Goal—Winnipeg 6-10-10—26. Ottawa 19-12-11—42. Power-play opportunities—Winnipeg 0 of 3; Ottawa 2 of 4. Goalies—Winnipeg, Pavelec 12-12-2 (42 shots-38 saves). Ottawa, Lehner 2-0-4 (26-25).
First Period—1, Pittsburgh, Crosby 13 (Kunitz, Pa.Dupuis), 12:06. 2, Boston, Seguin 10 (Bergeron, Boychuk), 16:38. 3, Pittsburgh, Vitale 1 (Adams, Orpik), 19:28. Penalties—Orpik, Pit (delay of game), 4:13.
Second Period—None. Penalties—Crosby, Pit (high-sticking), 14:18; Bergeron, Bos (face-off violation), 17:18.
Third Period—None. Penalties—None. Shots on Goal—Boston 11-9-12—32. Pittsburgh 10-5-3—18. Power-play opportunities—Boston 0 of 2; Pittsburgh 0 of 1. Goalies—Boston, Rask 14-3-3 (18 shots-16 saves). Pittsburgh, Vokoun 7-3-0 (32-31).