Mika Zibanejad’s Five Goals Power Rangers Past Capitals, 6-5 (OT); Ilya Kovalchuk Nets First Goal As A Capital

IMG_0285Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Washington Capitals fell the New York Rangers by a score of 6-5 in overtime at Madison Square Garden on Thursday night. The overtime loss pushed the Capitals to into a tie with the Philadelphia Flyers for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division with both teams now down to 15 games left in the regular season, though the Capitals have one more regulation-overtime win than the Flyers. Goaltender Ilya Samsonov made 33 saves in the loss.

Capitals’ Lines at Rangers

Defenseman Michal Kempny drew back into the lineup after being a healthy scratch for the first time since February 20, 2018, in the Capitals’ 5-2 loss to the Flyers on Wednesday night. Radko Gudas came out in favor of Kempny. The Capitals’ made no other line changes from last night’s game.

First Period

Forward Carl Hagelin ripped the puck short side from the low right circle below the pad of goaltender Alexandar Georgiev after getting a feed from up top by defenseman Nick Jensen to give the Capitals a 1-0 lead at 7:05.

Center Mika Zibanejad tipped in forward Artemi Panarin’s blast from just above the left circle in front of the goal to tie it at 9:01 on the power-play.

The Capitals led 5-4 in hits, 7-4 in blocked shots, didn’t score on a power-play opportunity, and had three giveaways while the Rangers had six through 20 minutes.

The Rangers led 5-4 in takeaways, won 56% of the draws, and scored on one of their two power-plays in the first.

Each team fired nine shots on goal in the period.

Second Period

Zibanejad blasted one past Samsonov’s glove from the wall after getting a feed from up top by forward Pavel Buchnevich to give the Rangers their first lead of the night 5:29 into the second.

Forward Ilya Kovalchuk blasted his first as a Capital from the right circle above the arm of Georgiev after getting a pass from behind the net by center Lars Eller to tie it at 12:01. With the goal, Kovalchuk passed Alex Kovalev for the fourth-most career even-strength goal by Russian-born NHL players ever with his 289th.

Defenseman Anthony DeAngelo roofed one to the top corner from the right circle after getting out in front alone and receiving a feed from Panarin from the wall to make it 3-2 Rangers 2:41 after Kovalchuk tied it.

Forward Garnet Hathaway answered 16 seconds later with a deflection off of defenseman Michal Kempny’s one-timer from the left dot that went over the shoulder of Georgiev after forward Richard Panik laid a nice feed down low to tie it.

The Capitals led 26-21 in shots, including 17-12 during the second, 12-10 in hits, 9-4 in blocked shots, 7-6 in takeaways, failed to convert on two power-plays and had five giveaways while the Rangers had 11 through 40 minutes.

The Rangers went one-for-three on the power-play in the first two periods.

Each team split the faceoffs through two.

Third Period

Zibanejad finished off the hat-trick, netting Buchnevich’s no-look feed from behind the net on the doorstep to make it 4-3 Rangers 12 seconds into the third off of a turnover along the wall by Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov.

Captain Alex Ovechkin ripped one past the right pad of Georgiev from the left dot after getting a cross-ice feed from defenseman John Carlson at 9:23 to tie it at four. The goal was his 46th of the season. Carlson passed Larry Murphy (1986-87) for the third-most single-season assists (59) and tied Kevin Hatcher (1990-91) for the fourth-most single-season points (74) by a defenseman in team history.

Zibanejad added his fourth of the night, shooting one after getting forward Kaapo Kakko’s shot that bounced off of Samsonov’s pad, off the end wall, and to the doorstep to give the Rangers the 5-4 lead with 1:42 to go.

Ovechkin tied it on a rebound off of Carlson’s shot from the point to tie it with 42.7 left for his 47th of the season, which tied Boston Bruins forward David Pastrnak for the league lead. Carlson became the ninth defenseman since 1979-80 to record 60 assists within 67 games. The goal was the Capitals’ league-leading ninth at six-on-five.

The Capitals led 16-15 in hits, 15-5 in blocked shots, went 0-for-2 on the man advantage and had five giveaways while the Rangers had 15.

The Rangers led 37-34 in shots, including 16-8 in the third, won 58% of the draws, 12-9 in takeaways, and went two-for-six on the power-play.

The game would go to overtime.

Overtime

Zibanejad backhanded one bar down on a breakaway after getting Panarin’s feed from the defensive zone to give him his fourth goal of the game and the Rangers a 6-5 win 26 seconds into overtime.

The Rangers led 2-0 in shots in overtime and 39-34 for the game.

The Capitals continue their three-game northeast road swing against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday afternoon. Action from PPG Paints Arena can be seen on NBC Sports Washington locally or NHL Network nationally 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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6 Responses to Mika Zibanejad’s Five Goals Power Rangers Past Capitals, 6-5 (OT); Ilya Kovalchuk Nets First Goal As A Capital

  1. Jon Sorensen says:

    Ridiculous.

  2. Marky says:

    Well that sucked! 😉

  3. steven borkoski says:

    Once again way to many penalties and couldnt score on the power play. Maybe this team should just scratch a lot of the regulars and bring up some of the guys from Hershey to play out the season. I would rather see them not make the playoffs then go out in the first round. How they are playing is so bad that they deserve to lose and that is so sad. Where is the team that was playing in Oct and Nov?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Sit out LE next game… TR has no control over the team… truly stupid !

  5. Anonymous says:

    Disgraceful even with some highlights and occasional good play. Carlson looks like crap, Ovi frequently looked off, Orlov looks like crap, and Samsonov was either checked out or had rookie jitters. On track for third at best in the Met, little to no heart left.

    If the players want to waste their own time, fine, just don’t waste mine.

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