The Washington Capitals won the second half of a home and home series versus the Detroit Red Wings when Alex Ovechkin scored 2:37 into overtime. The game was one of the Capitals’ most entertaining games of the season, much to the delight of the loud, sold-out crowd.
For most of the game prior to overtime, Ovechkin was a non-factor as he was shadowed by Detroit defensemen, allowing the Capitals to play four on four and four on three hockey for two plus periods.
The coach and players didn’t care how the Red Wings choose to defend them.
“No difference,” according to Joel Ward. “Regardless of the power play match-ups, you got to put them in.”
Jason Chimera agreed. He talked of other guys stepping up. “You got to think of different ways to score.”
Ward and Chimera certainly backed up what they said. Ward had two goals and an assist. Chimera had one goal and two assists.
Michal Neuvirth started in goal for the Capitals. Even though he let up 5 goals, he was “pretty happy with his performance.”
“Mentally pretty strong.” Coach Adam Oates said that of the five goals, one he would like back. The other four were breakdowns in front of him.
The Capitals seemed aggressive from the start. After ten minutes, they led 2 to 0, and outshot Detroit 6 to 1.
After the game, players talked about how good the Capitals can be.
“We can play with the best,” according to Chimera.
Neuvirth said “wins like that will definitely help us going forward.”
The Capitals moved one point behind Detroit for the final wild card spot in the East, but also behind Philadelphia and Carolina. The Capitals have four games left before Sochi to build on this win.
Detroit’s Gustav Nyquist had a hatrick.
Mike Green did not play due to injury.