The Washington Capitals beat the Colorado Avalanche, 7-3 on Saturday night at Verizon Center, improving their record to 13-5-1. The Caps are now 6-0 following a loss. The starting lineup for the Capitals tonight:
Brooks Orpik was out of the lineup for tonight’s game. This was the 5th straight game missed by Orpik, who sustained a lower body injury in Detroit on November 10th. Andre Burakovsky was the healthy scratch.
The Capitals would end their 9-game streak of giving up a game’s first goal. The Capitals power play showed pretty good pressure in this one, ending up 1-4 in for the game. John Carlson’s goal marked his 202nd career point, tying Rod Langway for eighth place on the Capitals franchise points by a defenseman list. Jason Chimera had another good game, with 3-points. Evgeny Kuznetsov registered three points (1g, 2a), marking his fifth multi-assist game of the season. Dmitri Orlov would score his first goal in 36 games. Tonight marked the first time Washington scored seven goals from seven different players since March 7, 2013 vs. FLA (John Carlson, John Erskine, Mike Ribiero, Eric Fehr, Alex Ovechkin, Mathieu Perreault and Wojtek Wolski). Defensemen Karl Alzner, John Carlson, Dmitry Orlov and Nate Schmidt each scored a goal for Washington. Tonight marked the first time since Dec. 4, 1992 that four defensemen scored a goal for the Capitals (Paul Cavallini, Sylvain Cote (2), Kevin Hatcher (2) and Al Iafrate). 14 players had at least a single point tonight.
The Capitals got the first power play, 1:05 into the first period. The Capitals had good pressure, Alex Ovechkin had three shots from “the Ovi spot”, but it would be Justin Williams who finally would connect on a shot from near the front of the net, just after the power play expired.
Alex Ovechkin would stretch the Caps lead to 2-0. Nicklas Backstrom with a great play from behind net to set up Ovechkin’s one-timer from out front at 7:15 of 1st.
Nate Schmidt, playing in his 82nd NHL game would notch his first career goal, to make it 4-0.
That’s how the first period would end, Caps 4, Avs 0.
Michael Latta would levy a hit and end up in a minor tussle with the Avs Chris Wagner.
The Avs would draw a step closer on a power play goal, making it 4-2 on a nice pass from Gabriel Ladeskog to Nate MacKinnon.
The period would end with the Caps holding on to a 4-2 lead.
Dmitri Orlov would make it 6-2, on a wrap-around wrister. On the play, it seemed only Orlov could see the puck, as all other players seemed to have loss sight as Orlov swept around the goal and knocked it home.
The Avs would not go quietly, adding another tally at the 11:52 mark by Andreas Martinsen, closing the gap to 6-3. Karl Alzner would get in on the action on a sweet feed from T.J. Oshie, stretching the lead to 7-3, with 3:37 left in the game on a wrister in front of the Avs net.
Caps would win this one 7-3.