An old friend who returned home this season, Eric Fehr, lifted the Washington Capitals to a miraculous 4-3 comeback win to down the Boston Bruins in overtime on Tuesday in the Verizon Center.
Looking to build off of a commanding 3-0 win over the division rival Winnipeg Jets on Saturday, the Caps welcomed the Bruins to the Verizon center. One of the best teams in the Eastern Conference, Boston entered Tuesdays matchup sitting on top of their division and in second place in the Conference.
The first period was all Bruins and they started to take control of the game early on. With just over six and a half minutes gone by in the first, Boston went to the penalty kill. While defending their net on the disadvantage, Brad Marchand took a breakaway in on Washington netminder Braden Holtby. Alexander Ovechkin, playing the point on the powerplay, was unable to catch up to him and hooked him. Marchand was awarded a penalty shot and scored to give the Bruins a 1-0 lead.
Bruins captain Zdeno Chara added to Marchand’s goale and gave Boston a 2-0 lead just over ten minutes later. Suddenly the Bruins seemed to be firing on all cylinders. Rookie Dougie Hamilton then extended the Bruins’ lead to three by scoring on the power play while Alexander Ovechkin was in the box. Even though Boston was up big after one, the shot totals were not that much different. Washington was able to throw six shots on Tukka Rask, meanwhile the Bruins were only able to throw nine at the Capitals’ net.
The second period, despite being one of the Capitals’ worst periods all season, saw them get back in to it. Leading Capitals playmaker Mike Ribeiro made it 3-1 with a wrist shot past Rask just under six minutes into the period. Tomas Kundratek would cut the deficit to one a little under six minutes later with his first of the year. Washington would fail to score on either of their power play chances in the second something that plagued them all game, going 0-for-4 on the man advantage all night.
It looked bleak for much of the third period, with the Bruins getting a majority of the chances on net. The third period seemed to foreshadow the game ending like all the other Capitals loss’ this season. Of course, that is until Wojtek Wolski completed the comeback with seven minutes to go in the third. He took the puck from Fehr, who would appear later, and knocked a backhand into the net to knot the game at three.
The teams headed to overtime and Fehr needed just 37 seconds into the extra frame to end it happily for the home team. In a game the Caps may have had no business in winning, they bought back and were lifted to victory by an old friend. With the team currently outside the playoff picture, wins over the Carolina Hurricanes, Jets and now Bruins mean they may be back on track.
Washington next faces off agains the listless Florida Panthers in Washington on Thursday. The win put the Caps two points up on the Panthers with a game in hand. While they are still out of the playoffs, they are now just four points behind the eighth seed in the conference.