The Washington Capitals fell to the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1 Thursday night at Capital One Arena. After a sluggish start by both teams, Carolina would open the scoring in the second period with a shorthanded goal, but Lars Eller would tie things up at one apiece just before the second intermission. The ‘Canes would regain the lead midway through the final frame on a delayed-penalty, 6-on-5 man advantage, and would add an empty-netter late for the 3-1 win. The same two teams faceoff Friday night at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina. Puck drop is 7:30 PM.
Braden Holtby (24-8-0, 2.68 GAA, .917 sv%) started in goal for the Capitals. Philipp Grubauer will get the start Friday night in Raleigh,
Scott Darling (8-11-6, 2.97 GAA, .893 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the Hurricanes. The Capitals starting forward lines and defensive pairs:
Andre Burakovsky was a late scratch due to illness. Taylor Chorney was the healthy scratch for the game.
A rather pedestrian first five minutes to start the contest, with Washington leading in shots on goal 5-3. The Capitals would be awarded the game’s first penalty when Marcus Kruger was called for holding Jakub Vrana at the 7:26 mark of the opening frame. The Caps would generate three quality shots including a pair by Ovechkin from the office, but ultimately were unable to convert on the man advantage.
The period would conclude without a tally. Shots on goal were 10-10 after the first 20 minutes of play. The Canes won the battle at the dot, winning 64% of the faceoffs. Brett Connolly had four shots and Alex Ovechkin had two shots to lead the Capitals for the opening frame.
The Hurricanes would finally light the first lamp on a short-handed goal by Jordan Staal at 11:33 of the middle frame. The goal was setup by a very poor turnover by John Carlson just inside the blue line.
The Capitals would tie the game on a goal from Lars Eller at 16:05 of the middle frame. T.J. Oshie and Christian Djoos were credited with the assists.
The period would end with the game tied 1-1. Carolina outshot Washington 15-8 for the second period, and led 25-18 after two periods of play.
The Hurricanes would re-gain the lead while on a 6-on-5 man advantage. Viktor Rask would find the back of the net from a sharp angle on a delayed-penalty call on Tom Wilson at 10:54 of the final frame.
Carolina would add an empty-net goal at 18:31 by Sebastian Aho for the 3-1 win.
- The Caps snapped a five-game winning streak and 10 game home winning streak.
- Tonight’s attendance was 18,506, the Capitals 387th consecutive sellout at Capital One Arena.
- The NHL box score is here.
By Jon Sorensen
SCENES FROM THE DISTRICT