The Washington Capitals beat the Buffalo Sabres 2-1 Friday night at Capital One Arena. The win raises the Capitals record to 21-10-3 (45 points) on the season. The Capitals are back in action Saturday night when they face the Senators in Ottawa. Puck drop is 7:00 PM.
After a scoreless opening frame, Chandler Stephenson would start the scoring with a short-handed break away goal to give the Caps a scant 1-0 lead after two periods of play. The Sabres would tie things up with a tally midway through the final frame. Tom Wilson would give the Capitals a 2-1 lead late in the final frame, and that would be the final.
Braden Holtby (13-8-2, 2.86 GAA, .911 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the defending champions. Carter Hutton (13-9-2, 2.60 GAA, .917 sv%) got the start in goal for the visiting Sabres. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Capitals:
Andre Burakovsky made his first after being benched for four games. Chandler Stephenson returned to the lineup after being a healthy scratch in three of the last four games. Scratches: Travis Boyd, Dmitrij Jaskin and Tyler Lewington
The Capitals and Sabres battled to a scoreless first frame. Buffalo led 9-8 in shots on goal (SOG) for the first 20 minutes. Both teams were 0 for 1 on the power play in the first period.
The Capitals opened the scoring with a short-handed goal from Chandler Stephenson at 2:50 of the middle frame. This was the Capitals second short-handed goal of the season. Nic Dowd was credited with the lone assist. Dowd lifted a pass out of the Caps defensive zone were Stephenson dashed to scoop up and drive home the tally.
And that would be all of the scoring in the middle frame. The Sabres led in SOG 10-8 for the middle frame, and led 19-16 after 40 minutes of play. Buffalo was 0 for 2 and the Capitals 0 for 3 on the power play.
The Sabres would turn-up the heat in the final frame, and finally tie the game with a goal from Johan Larsson at 9:01 0f the final frame.
The Capitals would regain the lead with a goal from Tom Wilson at 13:00 of the final frame. Evgeny Kuznetsov was credited with the lone assist.
The Capitals would hang on for the 2-1 win.
- Braden Holtby stopped 36 of 37 shots faced.
- Chandler Stephenson scores a shorthanded goal, his third goal of the season. That marks the second shorthanded goal the Capitals have recorded this season.
- Nic Dowd has seven assists in his last nine games.
- The NHL box score is here.
SCENES FROM THE DISTRICT