The Washington Capitals fell 1-2 to the Carolina Hurricanes, meaning the series is now tied 2-2. The good news, if you think there is any, the Caps played a lot better than last game, which wasn’t hard to do. MoneyPuck provides the visuals.
The Caps obviously got off to a terrible start allowing the Canes to score just 17 seconds into the game. But after that they found their old-selves and played a good game. The dagger of the game was allowing the Canes to score with 20 seconds left in the second period, after they were playing so well.
Every line did pretty well but no one dominated, which is what you need in the playoffs. The first line is probably not the wisest line to play against the speedy Canes. No one in the Ovechkin-Backstrom-Oshie line are fast so they can’t create much because the Canes are all over them.
But if all three of your lines can stay in the positive in Expected Goals, especially with the Caps talent, they should win most games.
The Caps top four actually did really well. The bottom pairing didn’t do as well but still stayed in the positive, which is good. Unfortunately, it was Brooks Orpik’s bad defensive play that led to the Canes dagger goal at the end of the second period. He’s 16 year vet and dropped the ball hard. You don’t want to see that in a playoff game. But he did score the game winner in game two so we’ll allow it.
It may seem bleak but the series is tied, the Caps are very much in this. They just need to up their game just a bit more and win two more games. The good news is they have two games at home, potentially, they just need to win there and the series is theirs. The bad news is it sounds like TJ Oshie will be out for awhile, according to Todd Reirden. Now it’s time for the next man to step up.
By Luke Adomanis