Capitals Fall To Panthers 6-5 in Shootout

Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images

The Washington Capitals fell to the Florida Panthers 6-5 (SO) Friday night at Capital One Arena. The loss dropped the Capitals record to 3-2-2. The team will squeeze-in one more practice Saturday morning before departing on their annual western Canada road trip. The Capitals are back on the ice Monday night against the Canucks in Vancouver. Puck drop is a very caffeinated 10:00 pm, eastern time. 

Four different Panthers would scoring in the opening frame to take a 4-1 lead into the first intermission. John Carlson would be responsible for the lone Capitals tally in the first 20 minutes. Brett Connolly would make it 4-2 early in the middle frame. Jakub Vrana would make it 4-3 and Devante Smith-Pelly would tie it up 4-4 in the second period. The Panthers would add a goal in the final minute of the second period to make it 5-4 at the second intermission. Nicklas Backstrom would make it 5-5 with a power play goal late in the third period. The Panthers would win it in a shootout.

Braden Holtby (3-1-1, 3.18 GAA, .898 sv%) got the start in net for the Capitals. James Reimer (0-2-1, 3.62 GAA, .885 sv%) got the state between the pipes for the visiting Panthers. The Capitals starting forward lines and defensive pairs:



Jaskin returned to the lineup, replacing Nathan Walker. Madison Bowey was the other healthy scratch.

The Panthers would strike first with a tap-in goal from Vincent Trocheck at 10:49 of the first period.

The Capitals would tie the game with a net-front goal from John Carlson at 15:26 of the first period. Lars Eller and Michal Kempny were credit with the assists.

But the Panthers would quickly regain the lead with a power play goal from Evgenii Dadonov at 15:58.

The Pathers would stretch their lead to 3-1 just 38 seconds later with a goal from Colton Sceviour at 16:36 of the first period.

The Panthers would make it 4-1 with a goal from Jared McCann at 18:52 of the first period.

The period would end with the Panthers leading 4-1. The Panthers outshot the Capitals 11-5 in the first period.

Pheonix Copley would replace Braden Holtby to start the middle frame. Capitals coach Todd Reirden would also jumble up the lines and it showed early dividends. Brett Connolly would cut the Panthers lead in half with a tally at 1:48 of the middle frame. Jakub Vrana was credited with the lone assist.

Jakub Vrana would close the gap with a goal at 8:38 of the middle frame. Lars Eller and Brett Connolly would be credited with the assists.

The Capitals would tie the game with a goal from Devante Smith-Pelly at 13:15 of the middle frame. Matt Niskanen and Evgeny Kuznetsov were credited with the helpers. The Panthers would pull Reimer and replace him with Hutchinson after the Capitals 4th goal.

The Panthers would be the benefactors of a 5-on-3 for 1:15 in the waning moments of the second period, and it would cost the Caps. The Panthers would push the puck across the line with just 8 seconds left in the first penalty. Jonathan Huberdeau would notch the tally at 19:09 of the second period.

The period would end with the Panthers leading 5-4. The Capitals outshot the Panthers 16-6 for the middle frame, and led 21-17 after two periods of play.

The final frame was relatively quiet until late. Nicklas Backstrom would tie the game at 18:35. Lars Eller and Evgeny Kuznetsov would get the assists.

Regulation would end with the game tied 5-5. Florida would outshoot the Caps 10-8 in the final frame.

The Panthers would win it in the shootout.


  • Florida was 2 for 7 and the Capitals 1 for 3 on the power play.
  • The NHL box score is here.


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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6 Responses to Capitals Fall To Panthers 6-5 in Shootout

  1. J says:

    Crazy game, officiating really interfered with the quality of this game. 7 pps for Panthers, half the calls were horseshit, you could tell every time caps gained momentum they trying hard to get FLA’s 1st win. Caps showed guts fighting back stealing a point but never shouldve been down 4-1 to a lesser team. Defense needs to get on track big time mainly turnovers, and protecting the homeplate in front of Holtby, pk could be better too

    • Diane Doyle says:

      I counted 8 penalties for the Caps but, of course, it included that extended 5 on 3. Caps making history in a bad way, being the first team to lose to Panthers.

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