Oilers Down Capitals, 5-3, Despite Coughing Up Three-Goal Lead

Photo: John McCreary/Getty Images

The Washington Capitals fell to the Edmonton Oilers by a score of 5-3 at Capital One Arena on Wednesday night. The loss kept the Capitals three points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins (who have a game in hand) for third place in the Metropolitan Division in addition to five behind the New York Rangers (both teams have played 47 games) and Carolina Hurricanes (five) for first in the Metropolitan Division.

Goaltender Ilya Samsonov allowed three goals on four shots before getting pulled in favor of goaltender Pheonix Copley, who pitched 21 saves in the loss.

Capitals’ Lines vs. Oilers

Graphic: @Capitals

Left-wing Joe Snively replaced captain Alex Ovechkin while center Aliaksei Protas took center Connor McMichael’s spot. Right-wing Garnet Hathaway bumped up a spot while right-wing Brett Leason drew into the lineup. Goaltender Pheonix Copley backed up Samsonov after Hunter Shepard did so after he came in in the Capitals’ 4-3 overtime win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday.

Scratched: LHD Dennis Cholowski, LHD Matt Irwin, C Connor McMichael

COVID-19 Protocol: Ovechkin (missed first game), LHD Michal Kempny (third)

Injured: RW T.J. Oshie (lower-body, ninth), LW Anthony Mantha (shoulder, 37th), G Vitek Vanecek (upper-body, first).

First Period

Center Leon Draisaitl tapped in a give-and-go with defenseman Cody Ceci while entering the offensive zone to the glove side to open the scoring for the Oilers 90 seconds in.

Left-wing Evander Kane tipped in defenseman Duncan Keith’s shot from the top through the five-hole of Samsonov off of the draw at 3:01.

Center Connor McDavid beat Samsonov to the blocker and banked it off of his arm on the power play 5:07 into the first.

Center Lars Eller deked and backhanded one into a wide open net after defenseman Justin Schultz found him all alone in front of the cage from the top to get the Capitals within one at 7:36.

The Capitals led 6-3 in blocked shots, 4-3 in takeaways, and had three giveaways while the Oilers had four in the period.

The Oilers led 12-6 in shots, 12-10 in hits, won 62% of the draws, and struck on their lone power play of the first.

Second Period

Left-wing Conor Sheary finally got a shot to goaltender Mikko Koskinen after center Nicklas Backstrom’s and defenseman Martin Fehervary’s shots from longer range were blocked by Oilers defenders and beat him to the blocker to cut the Oilers’ lead to 3-2 at 9:16. This season, Backstrom has 13 points (three goals) in 14 games and has recorded a point in 10 of his 14 games.

The Capitals led 11-5 in second-period shots, 12-10 in blocked shots, 8-7 in takeaways, and did not score on their lone power play through 40 minutes.

The Oilers led 20-15 in hits, had five giveaways while the Capitals had 10, and struck and their lone man advantage in the first two periods.

Each team earned 17 shots and split the battle at the dot through two.

Third Period

Ccenter Evgeny Kuznetsov’s shot from the sidewall slid the puck under the pad of Koskinen after defenseman Tyson Barrie got a stick on it to tie the game 2:48 in after picking the puck up from a battle in the corner. It marked his sixth goal and 17th point in the last 18 games.

Center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tapped in a layup after right-wing Zach Hyman fed him cross-crease on a shorthanded two-on-one to grab the lead back for the Oilers with 4:03 to go.

Nugent-Hopkins flipped one into an empty net to give the Oilers a two-goal cushion with 65 seconds left.

The Capitals led 14-13 in blocked shots, 10-8 in takeaways, won 52% of the draws, and did not score on three power plays.

The Oilers led 26-19 in hits, had seven giveaways while the Capitals had 13, and struck and their lone man advantage.

Each team earned 27 shots, including 10 in the third.

Next game: vs. Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday (7 PM ET, NBC Sports Washington in-market, ESPN+ out-of-market)

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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3 Responses to Oilers Down Capitals, 5-3, Despite Coughing Up Three-Goal Lead

  1. Jon Sorensen says:

  2. DC Scappeli says:

    Ridiculous no-call on that spearing….Caps should’ve run Draisaitl repeatedly if the refs weren’t going to make it right. That goes against the unwritten code—going after another player’s sack is off limits, man!

    Anyway, they probably wouldn’t have scored on the PP anyway….just horrible. Had they scored just one on the previous PPs, they would’ve won….and of course, it just had to be a shortie against the Caps PP at the end….ugh! 😣

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