Thursday night, Washington Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov matched his goal total from all of last year with a second period tally against Keith Kincaid.
It was a classic SCOARLOV.
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) January 19, 2018
After Jay Beagle connected on a pass to Alex Chiasson below the circle, the 6-4 forward put a shot on net. The initial shot was stopped, but the rebound bounced off the boards right to Orly.
He took care of the rest.
Orlov now has six goals in 46 games this season after needing 82 to hit that mark during the 2016-17 campaign. Orlov’s career high of eight was set during the 2015-16 season.
During the second intermission, NBC Sports Washington’s Tarik El-Bashir asked Orlov why his goal rate had skyrocketed this season.
“I don’t know. Probably have more shots, more confidence you know?” Orlov said.
Orlov is on pace (80) to well surpass his shots on goal total from last season (125). That also goes for his shot attempts numbers, where Orlov’s 159 shot attempts puts him on pace to also outdo his 249 SA from last season.
“We have good offensive group so we move puck well to net in offensive zone,” Orlov continued. “You know, the time right now is to score. We needed to go. We needed to put more shots on net. It’s what I try to do.”
While Orlov has one of the heaviest shots on the team, he admitted getting the puck on net and through traffic has been something he’s worked hard on.
“Just have confidence and feel it,” Orlov said on how he’ll score even more. “Sometimes you need to find better shot lane and sometimes you hit the shin pads. I try to work on that always. I watch how I play and how forward going to play on me hard or do I have time to make a play or pass or shoot?”
While Orlov’s goal was huge — it brought the team within one in the second period — he also lost the puck in overtime and was on the ice for Taylor Hall’s game-winning goal. Evgeny Kuznetsov lost a board battle and Braden Holtby was deep in net, allowing Hall to score.
Orlov, however, finished the night with the second highest shot attempts percentage on the team (48.15 percent) during a dreary game for the Capitals.
After signing a six-year, $30.6 million contract over the offseason, Orlov continues to evolve his game and solidify his role as a first-pairing defender.
Headline photo: Andy Marlin
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