After losing three of their last four the Washington Capitals began a five-game homestand against their long-time nemesis the Pittsburgh Penguins who were coming off homestand of their own. Coming into tonight the Caps had only beaten the Pens five times in the last 18 meetings dating back to 2012, and they hoped to avenge the shootout loss on both teams opening night of the 2016-17 season. Tonight the Caps would even the season series at 1-1 slaughtering the Pens 7-1; handing Pittsburgh their worst loss to Washington since 1991.
Caps winger T.J. Oshie scored the first goal of the game in the first period short-handed, breaking his four-game goal drought. He would later help his team break their five-game power play goal drought with a man-up goal towards the end of the period; he ended tonight with a career-high four points and his third multi-goal game of the season. The Caps power play wouldn’t be done there as winger Justin Williams would score the second man-up goal for Washington in the third period. Center Nicklas Backstrom recorded five points tonight with two goals and three assists, and defensemen Dmitry Orlov scored his first goal of the 2016-17 NHL season in the second period. The sixth and final goal for the Caps would come from captain and winger Alex Ovechkin that would him break a six-game pointless drought against the Pens.
The battle of net-minders tonight was obviously one-sided with the Caps Braden Holtby on that one side. He stopped 25 shots and now has won five of his last six starts. Pens goalie to start the game was Matt Murray who faced 14 shots and stopped 12 of them before leaving the game in the first period after being hit in the face with a stick by teammate Evgeni Malkin. Murray’s 11-game winning streak dating back to last March 6th was snapped tonight. Backup Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury would come in a stop 20 of the 25 shots he faced. The lone goal for the Pens was scored by Phil Kessel late in the third period by Phil Kessel at 16:28. A Pens goal was scored earlier but was reviewed and reversed when Evgeni Malkin kick the puck into the net.
Washington will try to capitalize on this high-scoring win on Friday night when they host the Detroit Red Wings. Game time will be 7:00 PM/ET.
About the Author
Written by Brendan Keelan
Former High School and College athlete (football, Wesley College).