It was a must-win game for both teams, but the Capitals come out on top over the Islanders. Ilya Samsonov stood on his head the entire game making cutch saves throughout. Semyon Varlamov also made some solid saves to keep the game tied at zero for the entirety of the game.
First Period Thoughts
The Islanders carried the momentum they generated from the 6-1 Rangers game on Tuesday into this one. They dominated the play throughout the first period, generating solid chances and outshooting the Capitals 15-4. Brock Nelson and Anthony Beauvillier had prime chances but were shut down by Ilya Samsonov. Get used to reading about Samsonov saves because he made a lot of them tonight. Later in the period, the Capitals started to gain some momentum, with great chances from their first line, but a few of their best chances were shut down by Ryan Pulock blocks. The score stayed tied 0-0 heading into the second.
Second Period Thoughts
With the Capitals controlling most of the play late in the first, the resulting swing in momentum allowed the Caps to come out strong. Washington’s depth showed their talent for the majority of the Capitals’ chances in the period. Tom Wilson and Conor Sheary led the team in shots with 3 each in the period with solid chances. Overall in the period, the Capitals outshot the Islanders 14-7, both Samsonov and Varlamov made some key saves to keep their teams in the game. The Islanders had a few penalties called on them in the period, with Mat Barzal and Noah Dobson sitting for a few. Fortunately for the Islanders, the red hot Capitals powerplay was shut down. The score stayed tied at 0-0 entering the third period.
Third Period Thoughts
The first ten minutes of the third was a fast, back and forth pace for both teams. With solid chances for both teams. Midway through the period, a rough battle in the corner resulted in a high-sticking penalty against Lars Eller. The Islanders’ powerplay highlighted by a great chance for Kyle Palmeri, but Samsonov made yet another clutch save. A bad play by Alex Ovechkin in the neutral zone led to a tripping minor with less than nine minutes to go. Unlike the last Islanders’ powerplay, this one did not have any major scoring chances, as Samsonov stopped the lone shot. With less than five to go in regulation, a turnover by the Capitals led to a fantastic play for Barzal, who pushed past the Capitals’ defense but shot high over Samsonov. The game could not be solved in 60, so overtime was needed.
Overtime Thoughts On Islanders Loss
The Islanders controlled the puck for the majority of overtime, as Mat Barzal had numerous chances but could not find the open ice to make a pass. Both teams registered a shot but both were saved. A 2 on 1 developed for the Capitals but Ryan Pulock was able to shut it down.
EBERLE – NO GOAL
OSHIE – NO GOAL
BEAUVILLIER – GOAL
BACKSTROM – GOAL
NELSON – NO GOAL
KUZNETSOV – GOAL
Final Thoughts on Islanders Loss
The Capitals win the first of a three-game series between the teams that will most likely decide the winner of the East division. A must-win game for both teams tonight but the Capitals won the shootout. Both goalies played fantastically. The next game comes on Saturday. This is the second game between these teams that ended in a 1-0 score.