Photo: Washington Capitals
Each week over the course of 10 weeks, NoVa Caps’ contributor Michael Marzzacco will take a look back at what he believes were the Top 10 Moments of the 2015-2016 Washington Capitals’ season.
#4: TJ Oshie’s hat trick in Game 1 – April 28, 2016
It’s game one of the Eastern Conference semifinals. The Capitals are hosting the Penguins, and while these two teams have met nine times in the post season, this is the first meeting since 2009. The Verizon Center was rocking on Thursday night as Game 1 of this epic series kicked off. Even though this series ended badly for Caps fans, this particular game will be remembered for TJ Oshie’s hat trick and game-winning overtime goal!
You can check out the game re-cap by clicking here.
Two stories of a very different kind came into play for Game 1 of Round 2….
Former Washington Capital Troy Brouwer steals the show in a decisive game 7 for St. Louis. Story-line number one features Troy Brouwer and his heroics three nights prior as the Blues downed the Blackhawks in Game 7. For those of you who don’t know, Oshie was acquired from St. Louis in return for Brouwer. It looked like the Blues made out on their end of the trade, and now it was Oshie’s turn to respond.
The second story-line comes from Oshie’s front porch where the night before the first game against the Penguins, one of TJ’s neighbors (who happened to be a Penguins fan) left a Pens’ poster on the front stoop of the Oshie home. Lyla Oshie, TJ and Lauren’s adorable two-year old daughter, made a statement that went viral!
The Caps jumped out to a 1-0 lead on a goal by Andre Burakovsky in the first period. In the second, the Pens managed to score twice and had a 2-1 lead before Oshie netted his first tally of the night. Oshie pick-pocketed Olli Maatta along the boards, raced down with the puck and put it top shelf over the glove of Netminder Matt Murray to tie the game at 2.
Oshie scored his second of the night early in the third period. As Alex Ovechkin had his shot blocked by Trevor Daley in front of the net, Ovi was still able to retain the puck and found Oshie coming down his right side. Oshie beautifully backhanded the biscuit into the net to give Washington the 3-2 lead. The Pens would tie the game at 8:42 with a goal by Nick Bonino and the game eventually went into overtime.
Before overtime began I tweeted my prediction on who would get the game-winning goal for the #BucciOvertimeChallenge. In the past I would always go with Ovechkin or Nicklas Backstrom but something was telling me that Oshie was having a certain kind of momentum and that he owned the night.
This contest would end almost midway through overtime. Oshie went to the right of the net to the back, wrapped it around, and scored! The call got reviewed but ultimately the puck crossed the line and the goal would stand!
The hats came flying on the ice and Caps fans went home happy with a 5-4 win in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. Here’s hoping next year’s top 10 features even more exciting playoff moments!
In case you missed the other six moments you can take a look by clicking below:
By Michael Marzzacco