April 23, 2014

Washington Capitals Game 46 Recap: Caps Clinch Southeast Division Title with 5-3 over Winnipeg

In a crucial late-season game for the Washington Capitals, facing the potential of clinching the Southeast Division or slipping behind the Winnipeg Jets and almost out of playoff position, the Caps put together a playoff-caliber effort in Tuesday night’s 5-3 home victory over the desperate Jets.

Spearheading Washington’s efforts were Matt Hendricks, Jason Chimera, Nicklas Backstrom, Mathieu Perreault, and Alexander Ovechkin, who each scored a goal in the victorious effort to sew up the franchise’s fifth division title in six seasons. Braden Holtby made 24 saves in the process of earning his 22nd win of the season. [Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 43 Recap: Caps Make Mincemeat out of Leafs in 5-1 Rout

With less than two weeks remaining in the regular season, the Washington Capitals extended their winning streak to eight games Tuesday night in the Verizon Center in a 5-1 romp over the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs.

Jack Hillen, Martin Erat, Troy Brouwer, Alexander Ovechkin, and Marcus Johansson scored for the Caps, while Braden Holtby delivered the type of stellar performance in net observers have come to expect, stopping 29 of 30 Maple Leafs shot. Holtby stonewalled Toronto for the first two periods of the game and then some, allowing just the one goal.

Ovechkin was in vintage form Tuesday, feeding off Toronto’s physical play and making his mark known on all aspects of the scoresheet. He netted Washington’s fourth goal – his league-leading 28th of the season – on a one-timer on a feed from Mike Green on the power play. [Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 38 Recap: Ovechkin Nets Hat Trick, Caps Hold Off Late Panthers Push in 4-3 Victory

In a crucial game against a non-playoff team, the Washington Capitals staved off a late push from the Florida Panthers on Saturday night to escape Sunrise, FL with a 4-3 victory. Alexander Ovechkin recorded his second hat trick of the season as the Caps took a 4-0 lead inside the first two periods, only to allow three goals inside the final 14 minutes of regulation to the struggling Panthers.

Despite a shaky third frame, Braden Holtby earned his 17th win of the season in a 23-save effort. Mike Ribeiro also scored and Nicklas Backstrom earned three assists, while Marcus Johansson added two assists and Ribeiro and Mike Green also recorded helpers.

Capitals captain Ovechkin is peaking at perhaps the best possible time for his franchise as it attempts to slip into a playoff berth. His trio of goals has vaulted him into third in the NHL in goals, with 23, and more importantly has powered Washington’s offense over its past 13 games, with 14 goals in that span. [Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 35 Recap: Caps Blow Two-Goal Lead in 5-4 OT Loss to Flyers

Desperate for standings points to remain in the Eastern Conference playoff picture, the Washington Capitals took and then frittered away a two-goal lead in the third period to fall 5-4 on the road to the Philadelphia Flyers Sunday night in Philadelphia on a last-gasp goal by Kimmo Timonen to send the game to overtime, where Ruslan Fedotenko put the Caps out of their misery.

Nicklas Backstrom, Mike Green, Marcus Johansson, and Alexander Ovechkin all scored for Washington, while Braden Holtby made 29 saves in the losing effort.

Although Timonen’s goal only tied the game, it clearly deflated Washington, who mustered no offensive pressure in the extra frame. D.C.’s nominal shutdown defensive pair of Karl Alzner and John Carlson failed to react to slick passing between Timonen, Sean Couturier, and Fedotenko, while the forward duo of Ovechkin and Mike Ribeiro could only look on helplessly as Fedotenko easily slotted Timonen’s cross-ice pass into the empty net for the win. [Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 31 Recap: Caps Dominate from Start to Finish, Wallop Jets 6-1

One night after seemingly having everything go their way, the Washington Capitals had another one of those experiences as Brooks Laich scored his first goal of the season to jumpstart a wild night on offense as the Capitals trounced the Southeast Division-leading Winnipeg Jets 6-1 Friday night in Winnipeg.

Alexander Ovechkin added two goals, and Troy Brouwer, Jay Beagle, and Mike Green also scored for the Caps in their second straight victory over the Jets in two nights. Braden Holtby turned away 30 of 31 shots in a stellar performance. [Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 26 Recap: Late Three-Goal Comeback Powers Washington’s 3-2 Victory Over Carolina

With the season already all but lost, the Washington Capitals earned a satisfying measure of revenge Thursday night with a late 3-2 comeback win in Raleigh over the Carolina Hurricanes, who shut out the Caps in the team’s previous meeting two nights prior. Mike Ribeiro scored the eventual game-winner with just 2:44 left in the third period.

Alexander Ovechkin registered his 700th career point on a power play marker one minute and one second into the third frame that tied the game at two, and earned an assist on Ribeiro’s goal.

Joey Crabb also scored for the Capitals, and Michal Neuvirth made 36 saves in the win, in his first start since February 7. Alexander Semin and Patrick Dwyer scored for the Hurricanes, while Dan Ellis earned the loss, his sixth in six tries versus Washington. [Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 25 Recap: Caps Shut Out, Swept Away in 4-0 Loss to Carolina

“I know the guys might be searching for answers for you guys after a game too and I understand that. If I thought a team was outplaying us drastically then I would say yeah, but I don’t feel that way.” Adam Oates, after 4-0 loss to Carolina

Little went well for the Washington Capitals Tuesday night in the Verizon Center, and as a result a lot went well for the visiting Carolina Hurricanes, who trounced the home team by a margin of 4-0 in a Southeast Division matchup. Carolina’s Justin Peters earned his second career shutout, and second against Washington, while the Caps’ Braden Holtby turned aside 32 of 35 in his ninth loss of the season.

Former Capital Joe Corvo scored the game-winner less than four minutes into the game, while Washington captain Alex Ovechkin continued his brief slump, failing to record a shot in the losing effort. [Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 18 Recap: Caps Dominate Offense, Holtby Rarely Tested in 3-0 Victory Over Division-Leading Hurricanes

Buoyed by a strong performance in their previous game and excited at the prospect of facing former teammate Alexander Semin, the Washington Capitals dominated play from start to finish Tuesday night against the Carolina Hurricanes and recorded a much-needed 3-0 shutout over the injury-stricken visitors.

Nicklas Backstrom and John Carlson both had one-goal, one-assists nights, while John Erskine also scored and Braden Holtby recorded  33 saves for his first shutout of the season, while the Caps put 40 shots on Carolina’s net and its star goaltender Cam Ward. Mike Ribeiro, Alex Ovechkin, Joel Ward, and Mathieu Perreault recorded a single assist.

[Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 16 Recap: Caps Own Worst Enemies in 3-2 Loss to Devils

Despite twice jumping out to one-goal leads, the Washington Capitals let a lead slip away late after a succession of penalties depleted Washington’s morale which resulted in a 3-2 loss to the New Jersey Devils Thursday night in D.C.. Devils superstar Ilya Kovalchuk scored the game-winning goal on a 5-on-3 advantage.

Kovalchuk’s seven shots on net during the game were almost half of Washington’s 19 shots, as Caps netminder Braden Holtby was significantly busier than his counterpart on the other end of the rink, Martin Brodeur. Holtby made 34 saves on 37 shots, his record dropping to 4-6-0 on the season.

Mathieu Perreault and Mike Ribeiro both scored power play goals in the second frame to stake Washington out to 1-0 and 2-1 leads respectively, with Troy Brouwer earning a pair of assists and Nicklas Backstrom adding a single helper. Alexander Ovechkin was held off the scoresheet, but recorded four shots, four hits, committed one minor penalty and drew two of them.

[Read more...]

Washington Capitals Game 6 Recap: Caps Take Early Lead, Fade Late in 3-2 Loss to Ottawa

Tuesday night on the road the Washington Capitals played perhaps their two best periods of the season, but it was a poor third period that proved their undoing in a 3-2 loss on against the Ottawa Senators.

The Caps took a 2-0 lead late in the first period on goals by Troy Brouwer and Matt Hendricks, the second marker of the season for each. Michal Neuvirth earned his fourth start in a row for Washington after Braden Holtby started the seasons’ first two games. Although Neuvirth stopped 24 shots during the game, it was three Senators shots in the final 21:23 of regulation to send the Caps out of Scotiabank Place a disappointed group of players. [Read more...]

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