Finally, after such a painfully long wait, the Caps are really back to play meaningful hockey. And it sucks. The Caps earned and then thoroughly squandered a lead in Game One against the New York Islanders.
After a goal-less first period, TJ Oshie got a pair of power-play goals in the second — first on a rebound, the second from a net crash. Jordan Eberle got a rush goal against some lazy D and a bad read from Holtby as we entered the third period, where Anders Lee got more of the same to tie the game.
That tie became an Isles lead in the worst way: a shorthanded goal by Josh Bailey. Anthony Beauvillier scored New York’s fourth unanswered goal to put the Isles up two, which is how it ended.
Caps lose. Islanders lead the series 1-0.
— Ian Oland (@ianoland) August 12, 2020
Given lots of chances at the power play, the Caps did just fine. But they couldn’t control play during five-on-five, and they looked overpowered when playing without the puck. That’s not an aberration from how their regular season went, and as much as we hoped the pandemic pause would reset things, that’s probably not the case.
Now they might have to deal with Game Two while lacking three centers (Backstrom to injury, Eller to quarantine, Kuznetsov to he-will-play-but-he’s-been-really-bad-for-awhile-now). It’s still early in this series, but it’s never too early to dig deep. We need a lot more from this team.
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