For the fourth time this season, when tied after regulation, the Capitals have gone on to record a win and secure two points in the standings. Additionally all four of these games could not be settled in regular overtime and the Caps prevailed by winning a shootout. The Caps extended their winning streak to four games by defeating the Minnesota Wild 3-2 via shootout.
Washington and Minnesota have not played each other since March 25, 2011 when the Caps shutout the Wild 3-0. Tonight’s game featured the top two power play units in the enitre NHL, and they both scored one power play goal tonight. Washington’s was scored by Alex Ovechkin, who is now four power play goals away (134) for passing Peter Bondra (137) for the Caps franchise leader in power play goals. With this win the Caps have now won the last four contests they have played at home with the Wild.
Capitals forward Marcus Johansson scored a goal and had an assist in this game and has had back-to-back multi-point games. Nicklas Backstrom who also recorded an assist, scored the game clinching goal in the shootout to seal the deal for Washington. Caps goalie Braden Holtby, who was the last Caps goalie to face Minnesota, recorded 35 saves tonight and has now recorded a total 101 saves in his last three starts in goal.
Despite this current hot streak the Capitals are on, they are still struggling to score goals when they have even strength. After being ranked second to last in even strength goal percentage in the NHL last season, the Capitals were ranked 27th in the NHL coming into this game. The Caps need to find a way to score more goals when it’s 5 on 5 because this is one of those issues that hurts teams in the playoffs.
These two teams will meet again on January 4th in St. Paul, MN. The Caps next game will Saturday at the Phoenix Coyotes at 8:00pm/ET.
About the Author
Written by Brendan Keelan
Former High School and College athlete (football, Wesley College)