GIF Recap: Alex Ovechkin Scores 481st Career Goal

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Photo: Jared Silber

The Capitals’ two-game winning streak came to end as they fell 5-2 to their Metropolitan Division rivals, the New York Rangers. The Caps goals came from Alex Ovechkin, getting his 481st NHL career goal, and Marcus Johansson, who scored his third of the season.

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Rangers beat Caps 5-2: Nothing Makes Sense

The Washington Capitals weren’t, like, top-to-bottom bad against the New York Rangers on Tuesday; they were just bad when it mattered. They were sort of terrific at gaining the zone and generating scoring chances, which is super nice, but an outpouring of turnovers and some blasé defense doomed the effort.

Oscar Lindberg scored first, exploiting some terrible Caps defense and Alex Ovechkin’s near-castration. Ovechkin got his revenge soon after with a goal of his own, but the period ended with the Rangers up 2-1 thanks to Kevin Hayes’ tricky snipe goal.

The Caps entered a two-goal hole early in the second period when Japers Rink’s Kevin Klein beat Braden up high. Washington started a rally, but Derick Brassard ended it with a gutshot through an uninvolved defense. Marcus Johansson tipped in Karl Alzner’s shot late in the period to put the Caps back in a less-terrible two-goal hole.

Same story in the third. The Capitals had all the possession and momentum, but the Rangers had the killer instinct. Example: Jared Stoll’s backbreaking goal as a power play expired. Some more stuff happened and then the buzzer went off.

Rangers beat Caps 5-2.

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Caps at Rangers Pregame: Big Lights Will Inspire You

The Caps visit the Rangers in an absolutely huge, pivotal, supremely important, must-win battle for first place. Or, it’s November and, while it’s always nice to bank two points against a division rival, there’s hardly anything resembling a must-win this time of year. In fact, teams only face a must-win in the playoffs when they have already lost three games in a series. Or in the regular season if they are facing mathematical elimination from the playoffs. Nothing else is a must-win.

But anyways, it’s the Rangers, it’s MSG in NYC, and both teams are off to hot starts. So, this should be a fun one. You can find the action at 7 PM on CSN.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 8-2-0 55.5% 101.4 24.1% 87.1%
New York Rangers 7-2-2 49.3% 105.0 14.3% 87.9%

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Capitals Eliminated by Rangers in Overtime

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The Washington Capitals have been eliminated by the New York Rangers.

There was a moment around lunchtime when I had actually convinced myself game seven between the Capitals and Rangers might not be a low-scoring, one-goal game decided in overtime. Maybe you thought the same. If so, you’re a dummy too. This was always going to be tight. It was always going to be a goalie duel. This was always going to be excruciating. The only thing we didn’t know was that this was the end.

Alex Ovechkin scored in the first period, fighting to win a faceoff then driving to the net as Marcus Johansson dealt him the puck. A glut of penalties sucked up the second period, capped off by Kevin Hayes’ goal to knot the game heading into the third period. The Rangers pushed late, but some great work by the Caps forward depth and Braden Holtby held on for overtime, which is when Josh Groban said

and he was right. The Capitals were frenzied in OT, but a spat of icings gave the Rangers a chance to strike and strike they did. Derek Stepan ended it.

Rangers beat Caps 2-1 in overtime. That’s the end of the season.

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Caps at Rangers Pregame: Into the Breach

For the second time in as many rounds, the Washington Capitals’ season comes down to one game. Tied 3 games to 3 with the New York Rangers, the Caps must win to advance to the conference final for the first time since season two of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, when Buffy had to kill Angel to stop Acathla from swallowing the Earth. If the Caps lose, it’ll probably feel about the same as when Buffy had to kill Angel to stop Acathla from swallowing the Earth.

7:30. MSG. NBC Sports. Crash the net.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 45-26-11 51.9% 100.3 25.3% 81.2%
New York Rangers 53-22-7 50.6% 101.7 16.8% 84.3%

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Rangers beat Caps 4-3, Force Game Seven

Hello, darkness, my old friend. I’ve come to play game seven again.

The Washington Capitals were designed by the Enemy to make your life unbearable. They get dominated by the Rangers, the fall in a three-goal hole, they mount a comeback, they almost do it but fall late.

Chris Krieder scored the first and second goals of the game in the first and last minute of the first period. Jason Chimera cleaned up a rebound to get the Caps in it in the second, but Rick Nash and Dan Boyle scored early in the third to put us in blowout territory, but hold on.

Joel Ward forced a turnover and Evgeny Kuznetsov sunk it to restore some vitality to Verizon Center, then Ward did it solo– crashing the net to make it a one-goal game. A huge push late yielded nothing except stress.

Caps lose. To game seven, good ol’ gay sev, we go once more.

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Not yet. Caps in six.

The New York Rangers have forced game six with some late-game drama. Caps in six.

No one scored in the first. No one scored in the second. No one scored until nine minutes left in the third, when Matt Niskanen set Curtis freaking Glencross loose in the offensive zone to score all alone. With 101 seconds left in #rego, goalie-hurter Chris Kreider converted on the rush to force overtime. Your playoff hero wore blue. It was Ryan McDonagh.

Rangers beat Caps 2-1 in overtime. The Caps lead the series 3-2. Caps in six.

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Caps at Rangers Pregame: I’ve Got a Feeling

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Tonight, the Caps enter Madison Square Garden with a chance to end the Rangers’ season and advance to the Eastern Conference finals for the first time since the spring of 1998. This won’t be an easy task. The Rangers are likely to play their best game of the series tonight, as their desperation level should be maxed out. Breathe people. The good guys are in the preferable position through four games.

Puck drop is at 7pm on NBCSN. Peter will be back at the helm for his usual game day duties once the game begins.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 45-26-11 51.9% 100.3 25.3% 81.2%
New York Rangers 53-22-7 50.6% 101.7 16.8% 84.3%

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Hoo boy, the Washington Capitals are not making this easy. The New York Rangers pretty much owned the zone, but the Caps had a secret weapon, codename: Burracuda.

The Rangers were on attack for the game’s first half pretty much always, but Braden Holtby had them solved– at least until Derick Brassard beat Alex Ovechkin on the rush to score New York’s first goal since the late 80s. It looked grim for the home team, but then Andre Burakovsky did unbelievable things. He scored late in the second and early in the third, breaking out on the national scene in a way the league hasn’t seen since Evgeny Kuznetsov did the exact same thing last round.

Didn’t even have to use Ovi.

Caps beat Rangers 2-1. The Caps lead the series 3-1. Is this real life?

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Caps vs Rangers Pregame: Revenge of the Sixth

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Photo: Alex Brandon

The Capitals seized an unlikely victory on Monday. The home team was outplayed throughout, but one improbable shot from Jay Beagle and a superlative effort from Braden Holtby gave the Caps a series lead they might not have otherwise deserved. If they want to put the Rangers on the brink of elimination, tonight at 7:30 PM on NBCSN, they’re gonna have to get better results from their top line.

Caps lead the series 2-1.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 45-26-11 51.9% 100.3 25.3% 81.2%
New York Rangers 53-22-7 50.6% 101.7 16.8% 84.3%

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