The Washington Capitals defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-0 in Game Six, riding two goals from TJ Oshie and a tally from Devante Smith-Pelly. The hard-hitting affair, which saw the Caps dole out 39 hits to Tampa’s 19, was one of the most physical games of the NHL season.
According to Natural Stat Trick, the Lightning out-attempted the Caps at five-on-five 53-50 with this lineup, but the Caps outshot the Lightning 34-24 and had more high-danger chances 14-10.
Barry Trotz will be keeping the team’s lines the same ahead of Game Seven. The Lightning get last change and will have more control of matchups. The winner of tonight’s game will advance to the Stanley Cup Final.
Caps lines are the same.
Holtby to start.
— Isabelle Khurshudyan (@ikhurshudyan) May 23, 2018
The Capitals most successful line of Game Six at even strength was the team’s second trio, featuring Jakub Vrana, Nicklas Backstrom, and TJ Oshie. Backstrom finished the evening with a 74.2 shot-attempts percentage, the highest of all players. Backstrom did this despite spending a majority of his 15:55 of ice time at even strength matched up against the Lightning’s best players Nikita Kucherov (10:28 TOI), Steven Stamkos (8:39), Victor Hedman (8:09), Ondrej Palat (8:04), and Dan Girardi (7:16).
Despite combining to score one of the biggest goals in Caps history, Washington’s fourth line consisting of Jay Beagle, Devante Smith-Pelly, and Chandler Stephenson struggled mightily overall, with each player having a shot-attempts percentage under 23 percent or less.
Dmitry Orlov, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and TJ Oshie led the Capitals with five shots on goal each. Brooks Orpik and Tom Wilson each levied six hits each. After blaming himself for three Lightning goals in Game Five, Matt Niskanen had the team’s highest shot-attempts percentage among all defensemen (68.2).
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