Islanders Down Capitals 5-2, Lead Series 2-0; Alex Ovechkin Scores Twice

Photo: @Capitals

The Washington Capitals fell to the New York Islanders 5-2 in Game 2 of their best-of-seven first-round series Friday night at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto. The loss gives the Islanders a commanding 2-0 series lead.


Braden Holtby (1-2-1, 2.50 GAA, .907 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the Capitals. Semyon Varlamov (4-1-0, 1.81 GAA, .930 sv%) started in goal for the Islanders. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Capitals:

Scratches: Nicklas Backstrom (Concussion), Radko Gudas.

The Capitals opened the scoring in Game 2 with a goal from Alex Ovechkin just .56 seconds into the game. Ovechkin’s tally, assisted by Tom Wilson (2) and John Carlson (3),ย  tied him with Denis Savard and Joe Nieuwendyk for the 20th most playoff goals in NHL history.

The Capitals were leading 11-2 in shot attempts before the Islanders took over possession at around the 13-minute mark of the opening frame.

The first period would conclude with the Capitals leading 1-0. The Islanders led in shot attempts 17-14 and 12-6 in shots on goal (SOG).

The Islanders tied the game early in the middle frame with a power play goal from Nick Leddy (1) at 2:56 of the second period.

The Islanders would quickly take their first lead with a goal from Matt Martin (1) at 5:01 of the middle frame.

The Capitals would tie the game 2-2 with a goal from Alex Ovechkin, his second tally of the game, at 6:39 of the second period.ย  Brenden Dillon (1) and Dmitry Orlov (2) had the helpers. The assist was Dillon’s first point as a Capital.

But the Islanders would quickly retake the lead with a goal from Brock Nelson at 6:54 of the second period, making it 3-2 Islanders.

The Capitals continued undisciplined play, getting called for their second ‘too many men’ penalty late in the second period, but the Capitals penalty kill continued it’s outstanding play.

The second period would conclude with the Islanders leading 3-2. The Islanders led in shot attempts 16-15 in the middle frame and 33-29 after two periods. The Islanders led SOG 12-7 for the middle frame and 24-13 after two periods.ย  The Islanders were 1 for 5 on the power play through two periods while the Capitals did not have a man advantage after 40 minutes of play.

The Capitals had their first two power plays of the game early in the final frame, but were unable to muster much in the way of scoring chances.

The Islanders would tack-on a 4th goal late in the game from Cal Clutterbuck with 2:46 left in the game, making it 4-2.

The Islanders would add an empty net goal to make it 5-2, and that would be the final.

Game 3 is set for this Sunday at noon.


  • Alex Ovechkin gave the Caps a 1-0 lead with his first goal of the playoffs, his franchise-leading 66th playoff goal. Since his playoff debut in 2008, Ovechkin now ranks first in the NHL in playoff goals, passing Sidney Crosby (65).
  • In his career, Alex Ovechkin has recorded 55 points (24g, 31a) in 52 career playoff games immediately following a playoff loss (excluding Round Robin games).
  • With his 66th career playoff goal, Ovechkin has tied Denis Savard and Joe Nieuwendyk for the 20th most playoff goals in NHL history.
  • Ovechkin scored the Capitals’ second goal of the game with his second goal of the game. That marks Ovechkin’s eighth career multi-goal game in the playoffs.
  • Tom Wilson and John Carlson have been awarded assists on Alex Ovechkin’s first period goal. It marks Wilson’s second assist of the playoffs and Carlson’s third assist in two playoff games.
  • With the assist, Carlson has passed Scott Stevens (44) for the most playoff assists by a defenseman in franchise history and the fourth most by any player.
  • Coming into the game, the Capitals were 21-23 in Game 2s in franchise history and 10-9 when trailing a series 1-0.
  • Coming into the game, in 13 career Game 2s, Braden Holtby was 8-5 with a 1.89 GAA and a .940 SV%.

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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4 Responses to Islanders Down Capitals 5-2, Lead Series 2-0; Alex Ovechkin Scores Twice

  1. Scottlew73 says:

    All the graphs & stat’s are pretty but didn’t see stat that counts…. How badly the Cap’s are being OutCoached!! Wonder if owner Ted’s not realizing now GM had no clue on who was going to be best coach for Cap’s AC(after Cup). Hey caps fans start marking your calendars now Ovie will be running out of Washington to goto contender!!

  2. Scottlew73 says:

    Yeah & coach’s had 5 months to change direction they were taking prior to season being called! If you look close those 3-4 Homer Simpson like hairs on coach Todd’s head are from Fat lady warming up down the tunnel to dressing room!

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      I agree, he had time to modify his โ€œsystemโ€ during the COVID pause, but didnโ€™t change a thing. Thatโ€™s on him. In the end, his system will be the downfall.

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