Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images
The Washington Capitals beat the St. Louis Blues 4-3 (OT) Sunday afternoon at Capital One Arena. The Caps struck first in the opening frame, but gave up two quick goals to start the second period, to find themselves down 2-1 at the second intermission. The Capitals would rally in the third period with goals from Alex Ovechkin and Lars Eller to take a 3-2 lead, but the Blues would tie it with less than five minutes to go, sending the game into overtime. Nicklas Backstrom would win it in extra time. The Capitals return to action Tuesday night when they host the Vancouver Canucks at Capitals One Arena. Puck drop is 7:00PM.
Braden Holtby (23-8-0, 2.68 GAA, .917 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the Capitals. Carter Hutton (8-3-0, 1.64 GAA, .947 sv%) got the start in goal for the Blues. The Capitals starting forward lines and defensive pairs:
Andre Burakovsky returned to the starting lineup after being. Healthy scratch for the last two games. Chandler Stephenson and Taylor Chorney were the healthy scratches.
A fairly even but sloppy first five minutes to start the game, with the Blues leading in shots on goal 3-1. The Capitals were awarded the game’s first power play with 10:25 remaining in the period, but Washington was unable to capitalize, generating just a single shot on goal.
However, the Caps would quickly return to the man-advantage with 8:02 remaining in the opening frame, and this time the Caps would make it work. Brett Connolly would make a beautiful deflection of an Alex Ovechkin shot for the game’s first tally at the 13:15 mark of the first period. This was Connolly’s ninth goal of the season.
John Walton with the radio call:
The period would end with the Capitals holding on to a 1-0 lead. The Capitals outshot the Blues 8-7 for the first 20 minutes. The Blues won the faceoff battle 62-38% for the first.
The Blues would tie the game just 1:18 into the middle frame when Valdimir Tarasenko barried a close-rang wrister from the slot. The goal was Tarasemko’s 18th of the season.
The Blues would quickly take the lead on a goal by Alexander Steen at 5:02 of the middle frame. The Blues outshot the Caps 8-0 for the first five minutes of the second period.
The period would conclude with the Blues leading 2-1. The Blues outshot the Caps 17-6 for the second period, and led 24-14 after two periods of play.
The Capitals would tie the game with a power play goal by Alex Ovechkin at the 8:00 mark of the final frame.
John Walton on Caps radio:
Lars Eller would give the Capitals a 3-2 lead at 10:49 of the third period. This was Eller’s 199th career NHL point.
The radio call from John Walton:
The Blues would tie things up with a deflected goal by Carl Gunnarsson at 15:51 of the final frame.
Regulation would conclude with the game tied 3-3. The Caps outshot St. Louis 18-8 for the final frame. The teams were tied 32-32 in shots on goal for regulation.
The Capitals would win it in overtime with a goal by Nicklas Backstrom. T.J. Oshie would find Backstrom with a nice stretch pass along the right boards, and Backstrom finished with a top-shelp winner.
The radio call by John Walton:
- The Capitals have gone 12-2-2 in their last 16 games.
- The Capitals have won nine-straight games at home. That’s the longest home streak of any team in the NHL.
- Nicklas Backstrom recorded the game-winning goal, his ninth goal of the season. That goal was the 197th of his career, passing Bengt-Ake Gustafsson and tying Alexander Semin for fifth on the Capitals’ all-time goals list.
- Backstrom also recorded an assist on Ovechkin’s goal. That’s his third-straight game with an assist (5a).
- Alex Ovechkin tied the game in the third period with his 27th goal of the season, which leads the NHL. Ovechkin sits 13 power play goals shy of passing Dino Ciccarelli (232) for 9th on the NHL’s all-time power-play goals list.
- Additionally, Ovechkin recorded a primary assist on Connolly’s goal and now sits five assists away from 500 career assists.
- John Carlson and T.J. Oshie each had two assists in the game.
- Madison Bowey recorded an assist on Lars Eller’s goal. Bowey is tied for fourth among rookie defensemen in assists (9).
- Tonight’s attendance was 18,506, the Capitals 385th consecutive sellout at Capital One Arena.
- NHL box score is here.
By Jon Sorensen
SCENES FROM THE DISTRICT