Three games deep in a losing streak, winning one game out of the last four, the Washington Capitals were starting to look a little hungry. Thankfully, they stumbled upon an opponent ripe for the picking – the Edmonton Oilers (1-3-1), who were basically in the same boat as the Capitals coming into Monday night. The Capitals won 4-2, despite a poor start, and managed to hold on to a three-goal lead for most of the game.
“They [Edmonton] came out hard, played a solid first period and shut us down in the neutral zone,” said Mike Green. “We didn’t have much. It was just a matter of regrouping after the first and making sure we do the simple things to get pucks to the net, and we ended up doing that and they were going in.”
The Capitals have had trouble going on the attack right out of the gate and that was no exception tonight. Oates is still trying to figure out how to get better starts out of the team. “I’m taking suggestions,” he said after the game. Troy Brouwer also told reporters that he thought turnovers were a huge problem tonight and have been throughout the season.
- The Capitals hadn’t held more than a one-goal lead in any game this season, but rolled out to a 4-1 advantage in the second period after going into first intermission tied at 1-1.
- Marcus Johansson scored his 100th career point thanks to his assist on Alex Ovechkin’s second period goal.
- Brooks Laich, Joel Ward, and Troy Brouwer all scored their first goals of the season.
- The Capitals were 2-for-3 on the power play, with exactly zero of those goals scored by Ovechkin.
- Steve Oleksy has been quietly good, notching two assists in his last three games, one of which led to Laich’s tally in the first period.
- Nicklas Backstrom also had an understatedly successful night, tucking away three assists, his 22nd career multipoint game. Joel Ward complimented Backstrom’s pass on the power play that led to Ward’s first goal of the season. “I just had to put my stick down and take a crack at it. Nicky gave me a pass that almost felt like one of those drills at the end of practice with a wide open cage.”
NEXT GAME: Wednesday, 10/16 vs. New York Rangers, in their first meeting since being blown out in game 7 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.