Capitals Beat Blackhawks, 5-3; Dowd Scores In Second Consecutive Game

Chase Agnello-Dean:Getty ImagesPhoto: Chase Agnello-Dean/Getty Images

The Washington Capitals beat the Chicago Blackhawks by a score of 5-3 at United Center on Sunday night to earn their third straight win in the first game of their season-long five-game road trip. The victory put the Capitals two points ahead of the Pittsburgh Penguins for first place in the Metropolitan Division. Goaltender Braden Holtby made 40 saves in the win.

Capitals’ Lines at Blackhawks

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The Capitals made no lineup changes from their 5-2 win against the New York Rangers on Friday. Forward Richard Panik (upper-body injury) missed his second straight game.

First Period

Forward T.J. Oshie tapped in center Evgeny Kuznetsov’s feed from behind the net after he stripped the puck from Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith and kept it in the offensive zone eight seconds into their first power-play of the night and 9:25 into the game.

The Capitals led 11-10 in hits and 9-5 in blocked shots after one. They converted on their lone power-play of the period.

The Blackhawks led 14-12 in shots and won 61% of the draws in the first. They went 0-for-1 on the power-play.

Each team recorded two giveaways and three takeaways in the opening frame.

Second Period

Forward Drake Caggiulla put forward Alex Nylander’s cross-crease pass into a wide-open net after Nylander got a rebound in front to tie the game for the Blackhawks 8:25 into the second.

Center Nic Dowd put one under the bar on a two-on-one with forward Carl Hagelin after getting his feed on a shorthanded two-on-one and Hagelin intercepted a Blackhawks pass in the defensive zone to give the Capitals their lead back 1:27 after losing it.

The Capitals led 24-18 in hits and 17-8 in blocked shots after 40 minutes. They scored on their lone man advantage through the first two periods.

The Blackhawks led 29-21 in shots, including 15-9 in the second, 7-6 in takeaways, and had only two giveaways while the Capitals had five through two. They failed to score on four power-plays but won 61% of the faceoffs in the first two periods.

Third Period

Captain Alex Ovechkin one-timed one from the left dot past goaltender Corey Crawford’s blocker after getting a feed from the wall from defenseman John Carlson to make it 3-1 3:52 into the third. With the assist, Carlson became the third defenseman in NHL history to record 18 points in his team’s first 10 games.

Forward Dominik Kubalik finished a pretty passing play on the backhand on a rebound at the crease to get the Blackhawks back within one 2:13 after Ovechkin scored.

Forward Patrick Kane called his own number on a two-on-one and went through the five-hole of Holtby after Dowd turned the puck over to tie the game with 10:02 left.

Forward Tom Wilson slammed in Hagelin’s feed after center Lars Eller wrapped the puck around the net and created a rebound to give the Capitals the lead back with 8:13 to go.

Eller backhanded the puck from his own zone into an empty Blackhawks net to make it 5-3 with 49.3 seconds left.

The Capitals led 38-24 in hits and 30-11 in blocked shots. They scored on their lone man advantage.

The Blackhawks led 43-30 in shots, including 14-9 in the third, and 13-8 in takeaways. They failed to score on five power-plays but won 56% of the faceoffs.

Each team recorded seven giveaways.

The Capitals face the Calgary Flames on Tuesday night. Action from the Scotiabank Saddledome can be seen on NBC Sports Washington beginning at 9 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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