File photo: You, while watching this game (Photo courtesy of You)
Without Holtby but not without hope, the Washington Capitals played desperate hockey on a thrilling Friday night duel with the New York Islanders. Down one game to none, the Caps started out without distinction. Into the two-goal hole they went …and then out again they came, furious and scoring.
If you believe in the Caps, this game is why.
Like last game, the Isles struck early– this time with Cal Clutterbuck scoring on a 2-on-1 rush just five minutes in. Ryan Strome’s second-period marker put the Caps in a two-goal hole, but Karl Alzner’s huge goal got the home team into the game. Kyle Okposo scored a seeming dagger shortly after, but a stellar rally by Washington led to Alex Ovechkin’s kanooblian goal just before the second intermission.
The Capitals drew their first penalty in the third period, so Nick Backstrom carved through the Isles defense to tie the game at three goals apiece. Jason Chimera, yes, Jason Chimera, gave the Caps the lead by conducting laser surgery on his own rebound after Nick Leddy choked up the puck.
Caps beat Isles 4-3! Series is tied 1-1!
— hockeystats.ca (@HockeyStatsCa) April 18, 2015
— Martin OConnor (@Enocssa) April 18, 2015
— RMNB (@russianmachine) April 18, 2015
Joe B suit of the night
It’s too fresh for me to say something clever. All I’ve got is this: things looked grim and then things looked great. The hockey this Caps team played when it mattered most was some of the best hockey I’ve seen them play since you-know-when. It’s enough to make you think lofty thoughts about Caps hockey in May.
But that’s fanciful. We’ve got real life ahead of us. The Caps tonight will travel to the Island in preparation for Sunday’s nooner. They’ll bring with them a world of pride, and rightfully so. This was a great damn hockey game.
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