10/04/2018 – Washington Capitals v. Pittsburgh Penguins

 

Washington Capitals (1-0-0 2pts) v. Pittsburgh Penguins (0-0-0 0pts)

 

Lineups:

Washington Capitals:

Alex Ovechkin — Evgeny Kuznetsov — Brett Connolly

Jakub Vrana — Nicklas Backstrom — T.J. Oshie

Andre Burakovsky — Lars Eller — Chandler Stephenson

Nathan Walker — Nic Dowd — Devante Smith-Pelly

Dmitry Orlov — Matt Niskanen

Christian Djoos — John Carlson

Brooks Orpik — Madison Bowey

Braden Holtby

Pheonix Copley

Scratched: Dmitrij Jaskin

Injured: Michal Kempny (concussion), Travis Boyd (lower body)

Suspended: Tom Wilson

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Pittsburgh Penguins:

Jake Guentzel — Sidney Crosby — Patric Hornqvist

Carl Hagelin — Evgeni Malkin — Phil Kessel

Dominik Simon — Derick Brassard — Bryan Rust

Matt Cullen — Riley Sheahan — Daniel Sprong

Brian Dumoulin — Kris Letang

Olli Maatta — Jack Johnson

Jamie Oleksiak — Justin Schultz

Matt Murray

Casey DeSmith

Scratched: Chad Ruhwedel, Derek Grant, Juuso Riikola

Injured : None

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First Period:

Penguins Goal – 1:49 – Jamie Oleksiak (1) from Evgeni Malkin (1) and Phil Kessel (1)

Capitals Goal – 3:30 – Jakub Vrana (1) from Nicklas Backstrom (4) and TJ Oshie (2)

Capitals Goal – 4:19 – Brooks Orpik (1) from unassisted

Capitals Penalty – 5:47 – Matt Niskanen 2 minutes for Interference

Penguins PPG – 7:27 – Jake Guentzel (1) from Daniel Sprong (1) and Justin Schultz (1)

Capitals Goal – 8:00 – Alex Ovechkin (2) from Christian Djoos (1) and Evgeny Kuznetsov (1)

Penguins Penalty – 18:11 – Carl Hagelin 2 minutes for Interference

 

End of 1st – WAS – 3       PIT – 2

Shots              9                   5

Faceoffs      13/26           13/26

Hits               10                   5

PP                 0/1                 1/1

 

Analysis:

This was an ok period for the Capitals. Pittsburgh scored early, but the Capitals response was great by getting two goals from Jakub Vrana and Brooks Orpik. Then on a really bad penalty by Matt Niskanen, the Penguins took advantage to tie the game at two a piece. But it wouldn’t stay tied long as Alex Ovechkin would tip in a Christian Djoos slap pass to take a 3-2 lead.

 

Need to Do:

The Capitals need to do a much better job in their own zone as there were too many to close for comfort moments where they coughed up the puck too many times to the Penguins. Also the Capitals need to stay out of the penalty box, and not give the Penguins any opportunities to get back into this game.

 

Second Period:

Penguins Goal – :30 – Kris Letang (1) from Sidney Crosby (1) and Brian Dumoulin (1)

Capitals Goal – 3:54 – John Carlson (2) from Brett Connolly (1)

Penguins Penalty – 4:13 – Phil Kessel 2 minutes for Slashing

Capitals Penalty – 7:24 – Lars Eller 2 minutes for Hooking

Penguins Goal – 15:09 – Jake Guentzel (2) from Justin Schultz (2) and Patric Hornqvist (1)

Penguins Goal – 16:58 – Derick Brassard (1) from Dominik Simon (1) and Brian Dumoulin (2)

 

End of 2nd – WAS – 4        PIT – 5

Shots               26                  27

Faceoffs       22/50             27/50

Hits                 21                   14

PP                   0/2                  1/2

 

Analysis:

This was another ok period for the Capitals. They gave up a goal 30 seconds into the period but responded very well by retaking the lead, but after that it felt like the Penguins controlled the flow of the game more than the Capitals did. Also the Capitals not playing well in their own zone allowed the Penguins to score two goals later in the period to take a 5-4 lead into the intermission.

 

Need to Do:

The Capitals need to keep on pushing. They need to make better break out passes and they need to play smarter in their own zone. Also the Capitals need to do a better job around their own net and prevent the Penguins from being able to set up in front of Braden Holtby and get tip in opportunities.

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Third Period:

Capitals Penalty – :39 – Brett Connolly 2 minutes for Tripping

Penguins Goal – 2:45 – Evgeni Malkin (1) from Kris Letang (1) and Sidney Crosby (2)

Capitals Penalty – 3:53 – Madison Bowey 2 minutes for Hooking

Capitals Penalty – 8:40 – Jakub Vrana 2 minutes for Slashing

Capitals Goal – 13:01 – TJ Oshie (2) from unassisted

Capitals Goal – 13:22 – TJ Oshie (3) from John Carlson (2)

 

End of 3rd – WAS – 6         PIT – 6

Shots              35                   39

Faceoffs      32/68              36/68

Hits               32                      21

PP                 0/2                     1/5

 

Overtime:

Capitals Penalty – :19 – Evgeny Kuznetsov 2 minutes for Hooking

Penguins PPG – 1:20 – Kris Letang (2) from Evgeni Malkin (2) and Phil Kessel (2)

 

End of OT – WAS – 6        PIT – 7

Shots             36                 41

Faceoffs      33/70           37/70

Hits               32                 21

PP                 0/2                 2/6

 

Analysis:

This was a goalie and coach’s nightmare, not just for the Capitals but for the Penguins as well. Putting up a combined 13 goals, this game looked more like an All Star game than a regular season game. The takeaways though from this game is that the Capitals still have a lot to work on. They were much better in the faceoff circle tonight, but their ability to make clean break outs and generate scoring opportunities were choked away by the Penguins pressure. The Capitals don’t play again until next Wednesday when they host the Vegas Golden Knights in a Stanley Cup Final rematch, so they will have ample time to work on their game.

 

Next Up:

Washington (1-0-1 3pts) v. Vegas (0-0-0 0pts)

Pittsburgh (1-0-0 2pts) v. Montreal (0-0-1 1pt)

 

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