GIF Recap: Wilson and Chimera Help Caps beat Leafs 4-2

holtby-wilson

Photo: Graig Abel

The Capitals started their three-game road trip through Canada with a 4-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night. Tom Wilson scored his first goal of the season in his hometown as Jason Chimera got his seventh to tie all of last season’s total. Marcus Johansson and Justin Williams completed the scoring for the Caps.

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Let Us Read and Let Us Dance: Caps Beat Leafs 4-2

ChrisYoung

Photo: Chris Young

The Capitals came into the Air Canada Centre looking flat, getting outshot 16-4 in the opening frame. That’s understandable, given the Caps were playing back-to-back games, their seventh match in 11 nights. The Toronto Maple Leafs, meanwhile, hadn’t played since the 23rd of November. They came out swinging, wanting one last win against the boys from Arlington before Steve Whyno relocates back to the National Capital Region.

Jason Chimera, Whyno’s biggest admirer, made sure the Leafs would not get it. After a nice save by Braden Holtby, Chimmer used his speed to go two-on-one up the ice. His shot wasn’t great, but it was enough to beat Jonathan Bernier, who hadn’t played since November 15.

The Leafs got the goal back when the fourth line failed to clear the defensive zone. Maybe Tom Wilson and Michael Latta were tired after carrying all of Brooks Laich’s Black Friday shopping.

Wilson must have been rejuvenated in the second, as he picked up a loose puck in front, did a move from the Nutcracker, scored his first goal in his hometown and his first since March 3. Later in the second, Toronto tied it again when Leo Komarov deflected a puck past Braden Holtby on the power play.

The man advantage was the story of the rest of the night, as Marcus Johansson expertly deflected an Alex Ovechkin PP Bomb into the net for his second goal in as many games. Justin Williams added Washington’s fourth of the net off a brilliant assist from Jason “Yes, That One” Chimera. Nothing in the third. Caps beat Leafs 4-2.

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ovechkin-goal

Photo: Geoff Burke

The Capitals beat the Leafs 3-2 in a dramatic shootout win at Verizon Center on Saturday night. Nicklas Backstrom tied the game at 2-2 with 0.8 seconds left on the clock. Alex Ovechkin tied Sergei Federov’s record for most goals in the NHL by a Russian-born player getting his 483rd career goal, and almost broke the record, until his goal was controversially waved off for goaltender interference.

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A New Standard: Caps Beat Leafs 3-2 (SO)

Photo: Geoff Burke

After six years, Sergei Fedorov no longer stands alone as the most prolific Russian goal scorer of all time. With a backhanded whack, kiss of the glove, and a one-footed body slam into the end boards, Alex Ovechkin tied his legendary former teammate with his 483rd career goal. The Great Eight did it in 476 fewer games. The fans gave Ovechkin a standing ovation for his second period tally. The Leafs scored earlier in the game, btw, but that wasn’t important for our biased and bloggy narrative.

In the third, Tom Wilson made a dumb and James Van Reimsdyk and the Leafs capitalized. It looked like the Leafs were in for a win.

But wait! In one of the most glorious moments I’ve witnessed at Verizon Center, Ovechkin, with his back to the goalie, flipped the 484th goal of his career, breaking the Fedorov’s record. It tied the game. Until it didn’t. The goal was called back on a coach’s challenge.

BUT WAIT!

Nicklas Backstrom scored with the goalie pulled and less than one second left on the clock, sending the game to three-on-three overtime and then — and apparently we still do these things — to a shootout.

Some stuff happened and then OVI WON IT! That was amazing! Caps beat Leafs, 3-2 (SO).

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Caps vs Maple Leafs Pregame: Take Advantage

Tonight begins a stretch of games for the Caps against relatively weak competition. But there are no easy games in the NHL, and the Maple Leafs are better than their record shows, so it’s not as if there are any gimmes on the horizon for the club. Then again, tonight’s game is a perfect example of a game in which the Caps need to take advantage of the schedule. Seize the carpe, so to speak.

The Leafs are in town, fresh off an overtime loss last night to the Red Wings. Having played last night, and then travelling to DC after, Mike Babcock’s boys likely won’t be at their freshest tonight at the Verizon Center. Time to prey on the weak.

Check your local listings for channel, as the game is on CSN+ at 7 PM.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 9-3-0 55.3% 100.6 22.9% 86.1%
Toronto Maple Leafs 2-8-3 49.8% 98.8 12.8% 77.8%

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nikita-soshnikov

Photo: Atlant-MO.ru

A few days after the Toronto Maple Leafs announced the signing of one of the KHL’s top young players Nikita Soshnikov from the Atlant Moscow Region, some interesting details about the move have come up.

Via Maple Leafs Hot Stove, here’s what Leafs’ Director of player personnel Mark Hunter had to say about the move.

We got a lead from Evgeny Namestnikov, who we hired as a scout for us over in Russia. He said come over to watch this young man who he liked a lot, who he coached.

The Maple Leafs hired Namestnikov, a former NHL player and father of current Tampa Bay Lightning forward Vlad, to scout for them while working as an assistant coach for Soshnikov’s Atlant. This went mostly unnoticed in North America, but Russia’s top hockey reporter Alexei Shevchenko, after confirming Namestnikov’s double affiliation, referred to situation as “awkward.”

I think what the Leafs did was an unfair practice and requires an NHL investigation regarding its legality and possibly prohibiting it in the future.

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happy-burra

Whoa, relax Andre. It’s just an NHL goal. 

We needed this. The Capitals had a rough week, but they capped it off with a steady victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Sunday night.

Alex Ovechkin was the guy. He scored on his very first shift, using the space allowed to him by a gracious Leafs defense to shoot from the slot. He scored again in the second, snatching Brooks Orpik’s rebound to put the Caps up two.

Marcus Johansson sidled up to the scoreboard with a backdoor tap-in in the third period. Joel Ward launched an ICBM from the Caps’ side of the ice to score an empty netter with five minutes left.

Caps beat Leafs 4-0. Slump busted. Holtby perfect.

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Caps vs Leafs Pregame: Look Out, You Rock and Rollers

bigdeal

Big deal, Curtis. Anyone can point at an Edmonton goalie.

The deadline isn’t until Monday afternoon, but the Washington Capitals might already be done. After acquiring Tim Gleason and Curtis Glencross, the Caps current roster might be the same one we see in the postseason. Or maybe not.

Tonight’s game, at home against the Maple Leafs, is the organization’s last chance to evaluate their players before all sales are final. 7 PM on CSN.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 33-20-10 51.5% 100.3 23.3% 81.1%
Toronto Maple Leafs 25-32-5 46.4% 100.0 18.5% 82.0%

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Nothing Can Stop Us Toniiiiight: Caps beat Leafs 6-2

Graig Abel

Perfect picture is perfect. (Photo: Graig Abel)

Setting the scene: One of the world’s best scorers in a foreign country on a team that has consistently failed to meet sky-high expectations. After hitting rock bottom in puck possession under their disastrous former coach, they’ve got renewed hopes.

I honestly forget what team I was writing about there, but here’s my recap of Wednesday’s Caps-Leafs game.

The Caps struck first as Evgeny Kuznetsov carved the Toronto defense to set up Marcus Johansson.

The Leafs returned fire in the second period with a tip-in goal by Daniel Winnik. Eric Fehr got a shorthanded goal with the help of Jay Beagle to put the Caps back in the lead, then Brooks Laich scored off an offensive-zone faceoff to make it 3-1. Toronto responded with a rebound goal by Trevor Smith, but Marcus Johansson got his second of the night a couple minutes later.

In the third, Eric Fehr got his second of the night as well. I haven’t seen Bernier stunned like that since the time someone asked him who Nelson Mandela was. Alex Ovechkin got the empty-netter and that was that.

Caps beat Leafs 6-2! Bailamos!

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Caps at Leafs Pregame: Phil the Thrill

For once, it’s not our team that’s the hot wreck. The Capitals, with their stable coach and winning record and improving possession, traveled to Toronto last night in anticipation of tonight’s game against the Maple Leafs, who just fired coach Randy Carlyle and are currently in the process of deciding whether or not they should maybe eat their young.

7 PM on CSN.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 20-11-7 52.0% 100.2 23.5% 78.9%
Toronto Maple Leafs 21-16-3 44.9% 101.7 20.1% 82.2%

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