Historic Heartbreak: Capitals Fall 4-1 to Maple Leafs Despite Ovechkin’s Milestone 823rd Career Goal

Photo: John McCreary/NHLI via Getty Images

The Washington Capitals fell to the Toronto Maple Leafs by a score of 4-1 Tuesday night at Capital One Arena. The loss dropped the Capitals’ record to 1-3-1 and 3 points on the season. Goaltender Darcy Kuemper made 13 saves in the loss.

Lines & Pairs

Alex Ovechkin – Dylan Strome – Matthew Phillips
Connor McMichael – Evgeny Kuznetsov – T.J. Oshie
Sonny Milano – Nicklas Backstrom – Tom Wilson
Beck Malenstyn – Aliaksei Protas – Anthony Mantha

Martin Fehervary – John Carlson
Rasmus Sandin – Trevor van Riemsdyk
Alex Alexeyev – Nick Jensen

Darcy Kuemper
Hunter Shepard

Scratches: Center Nic Dowd and defensemen Hardy Häman Aktell and Lucas Johansen

Injuries: Goaltender Charlie Lindgren (upper-body), defenseman Joel Edmundson (hand; long-term injured reserve), and forward Max Pacioretty (Achilles; long-term injured reserve)

Transactions: The Capitals recalled Shepard from the AHL’s Hershey Bears and loaned goaltender Clay Stevenson to Hershey earlier on Tuesday.

First Period

Toronto would get the night’s first goal from defenseman Morgan Rielly at the 12:53 mark on a power play.

Quick Stats

SOG: 16-5 Capitals

Face-Off Win %: 64% (Maple Leafs), 36% (Capitals)

Hits: 4-3 Capitals

Second Period

Captain John Tavares would light the lamp for the Maple Leafs 5:41 into the middle stanza, giving his visiting team a 2-0 lead.

Toronto would go up 3-0 with a goal from right-wing William Nylander at the 6:29 mark.

It would be a 4-0 game in favor of the Maple Leafs as center Auston Matthews would convert on a man advantage late in the period.

With fifty-one seconds left in the period, the Capitals would finally get on the board during a power-play opportunity, making it a 4-1 game with Ovechkin’s first goal of the season. Carlson (3) and Wilson (2) assisted.

Quick Stats

Total SOG: 29-13 Capitals

Face-Off Win %: 55% (Maple Leafs), 44% (Capitals)

Total Hits: 8-5 Capitals

Third Period

The final frame would go scoreless, making it a 4-1 win for Toronto.

Quick Stats

Total SOG: 37-17 Capitals

Face-Off Win %: 53% (Maple Leafs), 46% (Capitals)

Total Hits: 14-10 Capitals

Notes Through the Game

  • Ovechkin scored his 823rd career goal.
  • Ovechkin’s goal marked his 300th career power-play goal. Ovechkin, the NHL’s all-time leader in power-play goals, is the first player in NHL history to score 300 career power-play goals.
  • Ovechkin’s 300th career power-play goal is also the 3,000th power-play goal in Capitals franchise history.
  • Ovechkin has scored 10.0 percent of the power-play goals in franchise history. That’s the third-highest percentage in NHL history among players with at least 40 power-play goals with one franchise (Teemu Selanne, Anaheim: 12.20%; Steven Stamkos. Tampa Bay: 11.56%).
  • Ovechkin’s goal marked his first career goal against Joseph Woll, the 170th different goaltender Ovechkin has scored on in his career. Only Jaromir Jagr (178) and Patrick Marleau (177) have scored on more goaltenders in NHL history.
  • Carlson extended his point streak to four games (1g, 3a).
  • Wilson is now three points shy of 300 career points (128g, 169a).

The Capitals clash next with the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center on Wednesday. TNT and Max will have the coverage beginning at 7:30 PM ET.

Capitals Postgame Audio

Forward Alex Ovechkin

Forward Tom Wilson

Defenseman Martin Fehervary

Goaltender Darcy Kuemper

Head coach Spencer Carbery

By Della Young

About Della Young

Della Young is an aspiring novelist and screenwriter who earned a BFA in Creative Writing from Full Sail University in 2021. She is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Screenwriting from Regent University. Della comes from a family of big Capitals fans and became inspired to start writing for hockey in 2019. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, cooking, and working on both sides of the camera. Follow Della on X: @dellayoung
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16 Responses to Historic Heartbreak: Capitals Fall 4-1 to Maple Leafs Despite Ovechkin’s Milestone 823rd Career Goal

  1. franky619 says:

    Just imagine if Teddy had not promised Ovy a competitive team. Man how bad they would be.

  2. Jimbo Jones says:

    Way to go, Darcy! 4 goals on 17 shots. Clearly a man worth his salary.

  3. andrew777dc says:

    Hit a stone Woll…
    Could only watch part of the third. Traveling for work now. Caps kept trying ‘til the end, it seems.
    Does the NHL app have it right, 14 SOGs for Ovie?

  4. Jacob Cheris says:

    The score says otherwise, but you can’t deny that there were more positives tonight. The offense was the best it was all year. It got its chances, but Joseph Woll was a brick wall. Defense was once again the problem. The Leafs capitalized on the Caps breakdowns. Stay tuned for takeaways tomorrow morning.

  5. Anonymous says:

    If this organization truly cares about Ovi, they would trade him to a contender at trade deadline

    • Anonymous says:

      Helps us too by getting a good draft pick
      Just don’t think a contender has room on their scoring lines for him
      No team is going to uproot their structure for an Ovechkin who doesn’t play well 5 on 5 and is getting slower by the day

      Anymore he’s only good for hitting and a one timer if he has the right linemates
      That sure whittles down the teams who could afford to disrupt their roster and their lines to take him on not to mention whatever cap hit they have to take on

      This could be a 20 goal season for him and be the real start of his decline not just as a scorer but the other parts of his game that are weak are also getting weaker

      • Anonymous says:

        Not to mention how many teams could or would want to take on his salary. I seriously doubt that his ego would allow the Caps to trade him as he has a no movement clause even if you could find someone who would be able to take his salary. Also how many bad contracts and players would they have to takeback. If he becomes unhappy let him retire and take Backy, Kuzy, Oshie, Carlson and Kuemper with him!

    • Anonymous says:

      If this continues he will likely request a trade….don’t let fluff he said prior make you think differently.

      • Anonymous says:

        Nothing any sports player, like a politician, is to be believed. Having said that I believe that Ovie can request all he wants but no trade will ever happen for two reasone:1) the compensation that the Caps would want in picks and young players no one will give for a 38 year old at the end of a career that yes features scoring and hitting but not much else and 2) no one is going to have the cap room to take on his salary unless the Caps take back several really bad contracts or retain salary. Also Ted is not about to let his pet draw leave town and have nothing to replace him with.

  6. Brianna says:

    Darcy Kuemper had 4 goals against him SA was 17 SV was 13 SV% was 7.75

  7. Anonymous says:

    After tonights performance maybe Carbery will let Shephard start the next 3games. Would be nice to see something different even if it is just a different goalie.

  8. Number13 says:

    They looked old and slow. This team will not play competitively this season. Cap Management decided two years ago that it would prefer to have the ‘goal record breaker’ more than a competitive team. If Ovie gets 30 goals this season, it will be amazing. They should have traded him to a contender…let him go out in style. Now, he is surrounded by old, slow veterans and saddled with very bad defensemen.

  9. Anonymous says:

    switch to 1-3-1 neutral zone trap. I keep saying it

  10. Anonymous says:

    What is this historic heartbreak? They have played 5 games and have 3 points and have 77 more to go and they will most likely be just like the previous 5! So start watching Hershey and SC and the Juniors and college ranks and look forward to a hopefully top 3 pick unless the GM makes a bone headed trade and moves picks and younger players for someone who ignites this team just enough to get the # 11 pick.

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