With two early goals, the Washington Capitals silenced a boisterous crowd at Air Canada Centre, but it didn’t last. The Leafs wrested control of the game back and applied pressure until the Caps made mistakes, forcing yet another overtime, the third in three games.
Nick Backstrom opened up scoring from the backdoor, fed by Nate Schmidt. Alex Ovechkin took a shot from wayyyy out to give the Caps an early 2-0 lead that they would squander. Auston Matthews finally got involved in playoff scoring after a shot bounced off Schmidt’s mask, making it 2-1 after one.
In the second, Evgeny Kuznetsov cleaned up Marcus Johansson’s rebound to extend Washington’s lead. Nazem Kadri and Connor Brown answered with a heavy shift agaisnt the Caps’ top line, ending with a goal. William Nylander tied the game late in the second while Shattenkirk and Orpik both got caught chasing Zach Hyman below the goal line. That pushed us to overtime, again, but it didn’t last long. Tyler Bozak ended it on the power play.
Caps lose. Leafs lead the series 2-1.
Joe B suit of the night
So the Caps found their scoring touch, but couldn’t keep it going. They got stomped in the possession game and looked pretty miserable in the back half of the first 60. For the third straight game, they’ve required overtime. For the second straight game, they’ve lost to an inferior team. These one-goal games are living life on a knife’s edge, handing over to chance what should be their right by conquest. It was chickenshit hockey for the Caps on Monday, and they’ll need to do way better in Game Four.
Headline photo: Ted Starkey
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