Capitals Nip Rangers, 3-2 (SO) For Fourth Straight Win; Alex Ovechkin Wins It In The Fourth Round

Bruce Bennett:Getty ImagesPhoto: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Washington Capitals beat the New York Rangers by a score of 3-2 in a shootout at Madison Square Garden on Sunday afternoon for their fourth straight win. The win put the Capitals two points ahead of the New York Islanders for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division for the first time since January 17, though the Islanders play against the Philadelphia Flyers later today and will have a game in hand on the Capitals entering Monday. Goaltender Braden Holtby started for the third consecutive game and made 23 saves in the victory.

Capitals Lines at Rangers

The Capitals swapped forwards Carl Hagelin and Andre Burakovsky in the bottom-six forward group but didn’t make any other line changes against the Rangers. Center Evgeny Kuznetsov skated in his 400th NHL game, all coming with the Capitals.

First Period

After Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov turned the puck over from behind the net, Rangers forward Chris Kreider fed center Ryan Strome in the crease. Strome waited out Holtby and beat him to give New York the first goal of the game 45 seconds in.

1:18 later, Hagelin’s initial backhand shot was blocked by Rangers defenseman Libor Hajek after he got it from center Lars Eller but he got it back and beat Georgiev with nothing but net to look at for his first goal as a Capital and to tie the game.

Burakovsky took the puck into the offensive zone and skated to the middle around Rangers defenseman Marc Staal. He waited out Georgiev and sniped one top shelf to give the Capitals a 2-1 lead 10:02 into the first. The goal marked his ninth of the season.

The Capitals led 4-3 in blocked shots and had seven giveaways while the Rangers had eight after the first.

The Rangers led 11-9 in shots and 3-0 in takeaways after one. They won 61% of the faceoffs in the opening 20 minutes.

Each team recorded 11 hits and went 0-for-1 on the power-play in the first.

Second Period

Center Pavel Buchnevich tied the game with a wicked one-timer from the right dot after center Filip Chytil fed him with a backhand pass while falling down with 5:40 left in the second.

The Capitals led 29-18 in shots, including 20-7 in the second, and had 15 giveaways while the Rangers had 16 after two.

The Rangers led 22-19 in hits, 10-5 in blocked shots, and 9-2 in takeaways after 40 minutes. They won 54% of the faceoffs in the first two periods.

Each team did not score on the power-play in the first 40 minutes. The Capitals had two opportunities on the man advantage while the Rangers had one.

Third Period

The game would go to overtime after neither team scored in the final frame.

The Capitals led 36-23 in shots, including 7-5 in the third, and had 18 giveaways while the Rangers had 21.

The Rangers led 31-29 in hits, 10-9 in blocked shots, and 13-4 in takeaways. They won 58% of the faceoffs.

Each team did not score on the power-play. The Capitals had four opportunities on the man advantage while the Rangers had two.


Each team posted two shots in overtime and the Capitals led 38-25 in shots over regulation and overtime. The game would go to a shootout.


Defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk went top corner in the opening round.

Oshie beat Georgiev through the five-hole to tie it.

Center Mika Zibanejad was robbed by Holtby with the glove.

Center Evgeny Kuznetsov was thwarted by Georgiev, who poke-checked the puck away from him while he was deking.

Defenseman Tony DeAngelo went five-hole on Holtby to give the Rangers the lead.

Backstrom tied it with a shot that went under the glove of Georgiev.

Chytil was stopped by Holtby at the post with the pad.

Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin missed after Georgiev threw his stick at him, denying him of a wide-open net, but it stood up as a goal because he threw his stick.

The Capitals conclude their three-game Metropolitan Division road-trip at the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night. Action from Wells Fargo Center will begin at 7:30 PM ET on NBCSN.

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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