Capitals Fall To Maple Leafs, 4-3 (SO); Alex Ovechkin Leaves Game With Upper Body Injury

Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The Washington Capitals fell to the Toronto Maple Leafs, 4-3, in the shootout, Sunday night at Capital One Arena. The shootout loss drops the Capitals record to 44-23-12 (100 points) on the season. They remain one point behind the Penguins for third place in the Metropolitan Division, with one game in hand.

The Capitals opened the scoring with a goal from T.J. Oshie less than six minutes into the contest, but the Maple Leafs would answer less than seven minutes later for the 1-1 tie at the first intermission.

After a scoreless middle frame, the Capitals regained the lead on Lars Eller’s 13th goal of the season and stretched the lead to 3-1 on Marcus Johansen’s 9th goal of the season. The Leafs would answer late in the period to make it 3-2 and would tie it late at 6-on-5, sending the game to overtime.

After a scoreless overtime period, the Maple Leafs would win it in the 7th round of the shootout.



Vitek Vanecek (20-111-0-5, 2.60 GAA, .910 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the  Capitals. Erik Kallgren (6-4-0-1, 3.48 GAA, .882 sv%) got the start in goal for the Maple Leafs. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Capitals:

Scratches: Connor McMichael, Axel Jonsson-Fjallby, Matt Irwin and Michal Kempny were once again the healthy scratches.


The Capitals would strike first on a goal from T.J. Oshie (11) at 5:34 of the first period. Anthony Mantha (13) had the lone assist.

The Maple Leafs answered with a goal from Ilya Lyubushkin (2) at 12:32 of the first period. Mitch Marner (62) and Auston Matthews (45) had the helpers.

The period would end with the game tied 1-1.


The Capitals and Maple Leafs skated to a scoreless draw in the middle frame. Both teams had a goal removed from the scoresheet after the opposing called for a review.

The Capitals lead in shot attempts, 38-29. The Leafs lead in scoring chances, 16-14, and high-danger chances, 5-3. Caps lead in expected goals for 1.03 to .99.


Alex Ovechkin would leave the game in the early frame after taking a spill into the corner boards. He remained out with an “upper body injury”. More on Ovechkin here.

The Capitals regained the lead on Lars Eller’s 13th goal of the season at 3:32 of the final frame. Martin Fehervary (8) and John Carlson (54) had the helpers.

Moments later Marcus Johansen (9) stretched the Capitals lead to 3-1 at 4:40 of the third period. Conor Sheary (24) and Justin Schultz (19) had the assists.

The Maple Leafs would cut the score to a single goal with a tally from Ilya Mikheyev (20) at 12:36 of the third period. Carl Dahlstrom (2) and Pierre Engvall (19) had the assists.

The Leafs would tie the game at 6-on-5 with a goal from Jason Spezza.

Regulation would end with the game tied, 3-3, sending the game to 3-on-3 overtime.


Overtime would go scoreless, sending the game to the shootout.

1. Kuznetsov- Good, Spezza – Good
2. Backstrom – no good, Matthews – no good
3. Oshie – no good, Nylander – no good
4. Mantha – no good, Mikheyev – no good
5. Carlson – no good, Marner – no good
6. Johansson – no good, Engvall – no good
7. van Riemsdyk- no good, Kerfoot – good.


  • T.J. Oshie opens up the scoring to give the Caps a 1-0 lead. That marks Oshie’s 11th goal of the season and the fourth time he scored Washington’s first goal of the game.
  • Oshie’s goal was assisted by Anthony Mantha, his 13th assist of the season in his 34th game of the year. That’s one shy of Mantha’s assist total in 56 games last season with both the Capitals and the Detroit Red Wings.

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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9 Responses to Capitals Fall To Maple Leafs, 4-3 (SO); Alex Ovechkin Leaves Game With Upper Body Injury

  1. Pepe says:

    I just hope Ovi is ok.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hope OV is ok….
    Pens lost and the Caps had a 2 goal lead in the 3rd… GTG with 60 sec to go!

  3. DC Scappeli says:

    Ditto on Ovi injury….but jeez, Caps needed the 2 points. They gotta learn to lock teams down once they get a lead like that. But Caps exploded for 2 goals, Leafs did the same.

    Caps played them even, didn’t get embarrassed by the Leafs; however, the Caps embarrassed themselves by not holding the bloody lead! they got the loser point, but missed a chance to get up on Pitt in the standings and b ury them

    • Anonymous says:

      We had them by the throat, and we let them slip out of our grasp. We can’t keep losing to these guys. Ovi’s health comes first and foremost though.

      • DC Scappeli says:

        exactly! where’s the killer instinct with this team? Can’t keep giving other teams life late in the game! Lock them down!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Carlson, 90, and TVR in shootout? Gave a point away. Hope Ovi is not injured seriously.

  5. Jon Sorensen says:

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