Capitals Down Maple Leafs, 3-2; Alex Ovechkin Scores For Fourth Consecutive Game

Kevin Sousa:Getty ImagesPhoto: Kevin Sousa/Getty Images

The Washington Capitals defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs by a final score of 3-2 on Thursday night to improve their record on their season-long six-game road trip to 3-2-0. The team is now a point behind the New York Islanders for the top spot in the Metro and has 75 points on the season, though the Islanders now have two games in hand on the Capitals. Goaltender Braden Holtby made 40 saves in the win.

Capitals Lines at Maple Leafs

The Capitals made no line changes from their 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night. Forward Carl Hagelin, whom the Capitals acquired from the Kings on Thursday, did not suit up for game action.

Goaltender Fredrick Andersen started for Toronto. Center Nazem Kadri missed the game due to a concussion.

First Period

The Capitals and Maple Leafs traded Grade-A chances to score at the beginning of the game but each goalie stood tall.

The Capitals led 13-3 in hits, 9-4 in blocked shots, and had four giveaways while Toronto had five after one period of play.

The Maple Leafs led 12-8 in shots and 4-1 in takeaways after 20. They won 85% of the draws in the opening frame.

Second Period

Captain Alex Ovechkin blasted a pass from defenseman John Carlson, who got it off a faceoff win, and beat Andersen past the glove 3:54 into the period on the power-play. Ovechkin scored for the fourth consecutive game, notched his league-leading 43rd goal of the season, and recorded his 650th of his career in the process.

Forward Brett Connolly tied his career-high in goals with his 15th of the season after getting the puck from center Lars Eller from behind the net. Connolly toe-dragged in the slot and buried the puck into a wide-open net to give the Capitals a 2-0 lead 12:07 into the second.

The Capitals led 13-9 in second-period shots, 24-12 in hits, 15-9 in blocked shots, and had eight giveaways while Toronto had 12 through two periods of play. They went 1-for-2 on the power-play in the first two periods.

The Maple Leafs led 9-4 in takeaways and won 68% of the faceoffs through two. They went 0-for-1 on the man advantage in the first 40 minutes.

Each team posted 21 shots on goal through two.

Third Period

Forward Andreas Johnsson followed up center Auston Matthew’s rebound off of Holtby after Matthews tried to wrap it around to make it 2-1 4:23 into the third.

Forward Tom Wilson finished off a shorthanded 2-on-1 rush with Eller after getting his pass to bury his 16th of the season blocker side on Andersen to make it 3-1 6:46 into the period.

Center John Tavares sniped it top corner from the slot over the glove of Holtby to cut the lead to one with 32.1 seconds to go in regulation.

The Capitals led 35-17 in hits, 21-12 in blocked shots, and had 15 giveaways while Toronto had 18. They went 1-for-3 on the power-play.

The Maple Leafs led 42-28 in shots, including 21-7 in the third period, 10-6 in takeaways, and won 68% of the faceoffs. They went 0-for-2 on the man advantage.

The Capitals end their road-trip in Buffalo for a tilt with the Sabres on Saturday afternoon. Action from First Niagra Center can be seen on NBC Sports Washington beginning at 1 PM ET.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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2 Responses to Capitals Down Maple Leafs, 3-2; Alex Ovechkin Scores For Fourth Consecutive Game

  1. Pingback: Capitals at Maple Leafs – Inside the Numbers: Impressive Showing In Toronto | NoVa Caps

  2. Anonymous says:

    Another solid effort. Not as impressive as San Jose a week ago, but still impressive.

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