Game 4 Preview: Capitals @ Flyers


The Flyers had trouble with their emotions and the fans couldn’t keep their cool on Monday night.  Now Philadelphia has their backs to the wall with a 3-0 series hole and a lot of turmoil entering Wednesday night’s Game 4. 

The emotions ran high before the puck dropped as they honored team founder and chairman Ed Snider with a pregame ceremony.  The Flyers struck first to the delight of the home crowd with a goal by Michael Raffl less than a minute into the game.  The Capitals didn’t panic, in fact they showed zero signs of it in the middle of one of the most hostile environments they’ve played in front of this season.

Washington went on the power play and evened the score at 4:43 in the first with a rebound goal by Marcus Johansson on a shot by John Carlson.

Alex Ovechkin scored in the second period to give Washington the lead.  In the third, the Caps took control with four goals.  All four goals came on power plays.  The first came with a goal by Evgeny Kuznetsov.  After Justin Willams sent the puck along the boards, it landed right in front of Kuzy and he took full advantage.

Alex Ovechkin got his second goal of the game.

John Carlson scored for the third straight game.  That goal was assisted by Ovheckin which gave him a total of three points on the night.  His three points passed Dale Hunter for first place in franchise playoff points.  Jay Beagle rounded out the scoring.  Overall, the Caps converted on five of the seven power plays they were given.  It was the most power play goals they have scored in a single postseason game.

Braden Holtby stopped 31 of 32 shots to earn his 19th playoff win.  He needs just one more win to tie Olie Kolzig for most playoff wins in franchise history.

The Caps 3-0 series lead against the Flyers marks the first time the Capitals have led a playoff series 3-0.  They are looking for the sweep Wednesday night.

The Caps practiced on Tuesday morning.  Braden Holtby left the ice early after a collision with a teammate but he appeared to be alright.  Brooks Orpik didn’t practice and he won’t be playing in Game 4 due to an upper body injury he suffered in the second period.  He left the game after a hit along the boards by Ryan White.  Expect to see either Taylor Chorney or Mike Weber come in to the lineup.

For the Flyers, Pierre-Edouard Bellemare will be suspended Game 4 for a five-minute major and game misconduct from hitting Dmitry Orlov in the third period.  Fans started throwing wristbands onto the ice minutes later.

The Caps know the Flyers will be playing desperate hockey trying to keep their season alive.  They will look to rise to the occasion and get the sweep Wednesday night at Welles Fargo Center.  Puck drop is at 7 p.m. and you can catch the game locally on CSN and nationally on NBCSN (U.S) and CBC (Canada).

By Michael Marzzacco

Links to other articles:
Caps Aim to Close Out Flyers on Wednesday (Dump ‘N Chase):
The Flyers sent a message Monday night.  The Caps did, too. (DC Sports Bog):
With Brooks Orpik injured, playoff rookies Dmitry Orlov and Nate Schmidt will be leaned on more (The Washington Post):
Trotz says Philly fans’ behavior ‘uncalled for’ (CSN Mid-Atlantic): 
The Capitals With and Without Brooks Orpik (Japers’ Rink): 

Mr. Snider’s daughter says father would call fans a ‘disgrace’ (CSN Philadelphia): 

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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