If we’re all going to be completely honest, nobody is quite sure what the heck happened this entire game. All we know is that this was a game for the ages and we were all secretly hoping for a final score in the double digits.
The win streak finally came to an end for the Washington Capitals after the Pittsburgh Penguins came back from a 3-0 deficit and won. It was an extremely exhausting game.
Let’s set the scene. The puck is dropped and there seems to be a strong presence from the Capitals. First, an early goal from Burakovsky to get things cookin’. Shortly after, Backstrom scores with the help of an Ovechkin double screen. The period ends and we’re hoping this goes as well as the previous two games did.
Ahhhh hope, such a fleeting and fickle feeling. The second period begins and this one was nothing short of an absolute DOOZY. Nine goals were scored in total, starting with a Justin Williams beauty. After that, the Penguins score five in a row. Yes, they scored FIVE in a row. The Capitals answer with two, but Pittsburgh gets the last goal of the period with a controversial power play goal from our good buddy (not really) Evgeni Malkin.
There was one more period left in the game and at this point we all feel like we’ve aged approximately an extra fifteen years. Were there more goals? OF COURSE THERE WERE MORE GOALS. Lars Eller saved the day with a game-tying goal late in the third. Unfortunately, overtime happened and the Penguins immediately buried it. I’m exhausted just typing this.
NBC picked up Sunday’s matinee game between the Philadelphia Flyers and Washington Capitals because 1) the NFL didn’t have an early afternoon game, and 2) Caps-Flyers sounds good, or, at least, interesting.
And yet, for 40 minutes, it was anything but. But in that final period, the Capitals reminded us why they’re streaking so hard in 2017: it’s because they’re bananas for goals.
First, Andre Burakovsky ripped off his shirt, drizzled oil down his chest, and scored all by his damn self. Then, Justin Williams caught a pretty pass from Marcus Johansson and roofed it. Matt Niskanen got involved with two goals: one, a classic passing sequence from Nick and Ovi, the second, an outside slapshot that Steve Mason should have had. Feeling left out, Justin Williams scored again, chasing Mason and bringing Neuvirth to the cage.
And the Flyers couldn’t beat Caps goalie Philipp Grubauer even once!
Caps beat Flyers 5-0! Nine-game win streak! Back-to-back shutouts! Unlimited power!
The Washington Capitals disposed of the Chicago Blackhawks in spectacular fashion. Production throughout the lineup, Braden Holtby being even better than he was last year, Barry Trotz’ shining bald head. Eight wins in a row. Everything is good in DC….for now.
Jay Beagle, as he is wont to do against the Blackhawks, sparked an incredibly dominant first period for the Caps with a slick wrister that went five-hole on Corey Crawford to give his boys a 1-0 lead. Nicklas Backstrom would follow suit only thirteen seconds later after some nifty passing to make it 2-0 and Brett Connolly would do some former first round pick stuff and all of the sudden it was 3-0 after 20 minutes.
The Blackhawks would respond well in the second with a Vince Hinostroza goal to make it 3-1. SIKE! Marian Hossa interfered with Braden Holtby and you cant do that. Nate Schmidt would do cinnamon-bun things and feed Tom Wilson to make it 4-0 after 40 minutes.
TJ Oshie would add a 5th in the third and Beagle would score his second of the night to send us to Enrique-land.
Caps beat Blackhawks 6-0!
The Washington Capitals dropped the Pittsburgh Penguins in a home-ice battle that had everything you love: Braden Holtby heroics, explosive Ovechkin goals, knee-on-knee hits, unpunished butt-ends to the face, runaway penalty jags, nearly blown Caps leads, and Sidney Crosby’s face.
Alex Ovechkin gave Pittsburgh a 35-second headstart and then scored with a delightfully retro drive. Ovi continued his tour through goals of yore with an Ovi Shot from the Ovi Spot in the second period. In the third Justin Williams worked his old butt off to give Washington a three-goal lead, which was good because the Pens pushed back hard.
Evgeni Malkin busted Holtby’s shutout with a goal on a dubious power play, but Nick Backstrom nullified it with a lovely layup assisted by TJ Oshie, who committed the slash that served up Patric Hornqvist’s power-play goal. Lars Eller got an empty-netter to summon bailamos.
Caps beat Penguins 5-2!
On Monday “we” had a match-up of handsome goaltenders who also happen to be the two best at the position in the entire world. One of those men, Braden Holtby, is currently playing the best hockey of his career in this young blogger’s opinion. Three straight games of absolute dominance, and he won a duel with the perceived best netminder in the entire league on a big stage at the Bell Centre. Be thankful for him, Caps fans. “We” are lucky.
The first was a highly competitive and fast period that saw your Capitals go up 1-0 on the Habs after Nicklas Backstrom put home a rebound from an Alex Ovechkin shot to put the good guys on top. A quick goal from the “new” first line with TJ Oshie out. Shots 12-7 Caps at the end of 20 minutes.
The Caps dominated the second period in pretty much every positive stat that you can think of except the one that counts most, goals scored. Carey Price and Braden Holtby were still locked in a duel between two goaltending greats. A scoreless second left us at 1-0 still after 40 minutes. Shots 29-15 Caps.
Holtby’s sparkling effort couldn’t keep Montreal off the board in the third though. Tomas Plekanec converted on a power play opportunity ending Holtby’s shutout streak at 8 periods. The goal would be reviewed for goaltender interference but eventually upheld. Evgeny Kuznetsov then went full video-game deke with his magic hands to put the Caps back on top 2-1 almost immediately after the game was tied. Kuznetsov would leave another heavy mark on the game as he stripped Carey Price of the puck behind the net and fed a charging Brett Connolly to make the game 3-1. Alex Ovechkin would add a late power-play goal to make it 4-1.
Caps beat Canadiens 4-1!
Now, on Saturday, we had no 16-game winning streak on the line, but standings points count the same no matter who you beat. The Ottawa Senators aren’t a good team so you might have expected a letdown in the Caps play, and we did see of some that through three periods, but thanks to excellent goaltending the Caps pulled out another two points.
Trevor Jenkins Oshie put the Caps up 1-0 early, and his goal also involved the 500th assist of Nicklas Backstrom’s career. Well done, Nicky. The rest of the first was a bunch of cycling in the Senators zone and a few outside shots against Braden Holtby that he easily handled. Shots were 10-5 Ottawa.
The second period came and went without anything notable on the score-sheet outside of the two teams exchanging power plays. The Senators had a couple great late chances including a ping off the crossbar from Erik Karlsson, but Braden Holtby was elite, per usual. Shots 21-13 Ottawa (yuck).
The third period was pretty much more of the same. A few Caps rush chances here, a few Sens shots from the outside there. We were still locked at 1-0 through the first ten minutes. Braden Holtby held down the fort for the last ten minutes earning his second straight shutout.
Caps beat Senators 1-0!
DING DONG the streak is dead. The Blue Jackets came to town and were met very rudely by your Washington Capitals in their fancy home alternate jerseys. In a game that started with a playoff-like feel, your Caps had a chance to put an end to the biggest story of the NHL season so far. They did just that, stopping Columbus’ attempt to tie the NHL record of winning 17 games in a row set by the 1993 Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Caps came out strong, limiting the Blue Jackets to only one or two real chances and putting two goals past Sergei Bobrovsky. Daniel Winnik struck first, converging on a net front scramble and John Carlson deflected a Marcus Johansson pass off of his skate and past the Russian netminder to make the game 2-0.
In very Bachman–Turner Overdrive fashion, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” the Caps followed up a strong first period with an even better second. They doubled their lead with strikes coming from Nate Schmidt and Andre Burakovsky. 4-0 after two.
The Caps weren’t done there. In the third, Justin Williams would continue his hot streak with a top shelf dart to make it 5-0 and remove Sergei Bobrovsky from the game. Braden Holtby with the shutout, ho-hum. BAILAMOS!
Caps beat Blue Jackets 5-0!
We came into tonight’s #CapsCanadianNight with three streaks in jeopardy of being broken. The Caps PK had killed off 29 straight power plays coming into tonight, the Toronto Maple Leafs had won 5 straight games, and also have not lost a game in which forward Connor Brown scored a goal. All of those streaks were broken. No streak for you.
The first period saw both offenses explode for 5 goals combined, which is abnormal in games involving the Caps as they have allowed the least amount of first period goals this season. Kadri, Brown, and Gauthier on the board for the bad guys. Williams and Oshie for the Caps.
The Leafs made it 4-2 in the second when Auston Matthews showed why he is the savior of USA Hockey and my new favorite player that isn’t a Washington Capital. Period ended 4-2 Leafs.
Your Caps responded strongly with two quick goals in the first five minutes of the third to tie the game 4-4. Kuznetsov and Orlov on the board. But the Leafs wouldn’t go down quietly as Mitch Marner made it 5-4 on a breakaway, Leafs rookies involved on all 5 goals. Real American Hero John Carlson re-tied it 5-5.
ALEX OVECHKIN won it in over time!
Caps beat Leafs 6-5!
The Washington Capitals hadn’t had a lot of contributions from their defense so far this season, but that all changed on January 1, #TwentySeminteen, and the Caps’ home game against the Ottawa Senators.
After a scoreless first, Kyle Turris scored following Matt Niskanen’s defensive zone turnover. In the final minute of the second period, Karl Alzner scored a blazing one-timer goal set up by TJ Oshie to tie it up.
Taylor Chorney gave the Caps the lead with a strong outside shot early in the third. The Caps killed a two-minute Senators power play and secured the win.
Caps beat Senators 2-1!
Twenty sixteen was a mess. It was swirling chaos in which the things we depend on vanished and in their place came a grim mockery of fairness and equanimity. Appropriate then that the final Caps game of 2016 was refereed by Marc Joannette. The zebraman of the apocalypse tooted his evil whistle early and often, intending to make this the game of his will. The Capitals did not comply.
Andre Burakovsky sent a perfect pass to Brett Connolly to open up scoring, but scoring paused there once John Moore was injured by Tom Wilson. Later, Jay Beagle tapped in a point shot by Brooks Orpik to set a tone of eschatological ruin.
The second period was lousy with penalties. A three-on-three and an errant pass from Kyznetsov gave Kyle Palmieri a chance to score that he did not miss. But then the Caps erupted with three goals in six minutes: Oshie, Ovechkin, and Williams all struck before the second intermission.
Beau Bennett scored for the Devils in the third, but Marcus Johansson responded immediately.
Caps beats Devils 6-2!
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