Back-to-back afternoon games against playoff teams: Capitals beat Bruins 4-2

The Washington Capitals were back on the ice less than 24 hours after defeating the Pittsburgh Penguins on the road on Saturday. Could they sneak a win over a better rested Boston Bruins team?

John Carlson opened the scoring in the second before back-to-back goals from Curtis Lazar and Erik Haula gave the Bruins a midgame lead. Tom Wilson rebounded home to tie the game at two. Lars Eller fired the puck at the net and it took a bad deflection to beat Linus Ullmark and put the Caps ahead in the third period.

Alex Ovechkin clears the net! I like this.

The Capitals beat the Bruins 4-2!

  • Almost directly in the middle of the first half in terms of chances. Both Vitek Vanecek and Linus Ullmark were very good from the start as we left the first twenty minutes scoreless. Two bad penalties taken by Nic Dowd and Dmitry Orlov.
  • I saw more talk about golf than hockey on those nationally broadcast intermission shows. If I wanted to hear about the Masters every four seconds, I would watch them. Also the golf sucks. I won’t hear any arguments.
  • I have no idea why this type of planning is allowed. The Caps finished their game against the Pens in Pittsburgh about 18 hours before the face-off in DC. That’s exactly how guys get injured and it’s not like they haven’t had some weird multi-day breaks recently that could have been filled with a game to avoid that back-to-back. Nationally televised game money, but always before NHL player safety.
  • The second period was much less good. The Bruins had plenty of pucks and the Caps didn’t really test Ullmark outside of the shift where Tom Wilson converted on a rebound chance. Coming out of the frame tied at two was a welcome sight.
  • Marcus Johansson really needs to get the puck deep in neutral before that Erik Haula goal. I don’t know why he tried to extend the shift instead with a touch pass to TJ Oshie. Johansson was a great Cap in his youth but man… I’m pretty suspicious of his value right now.
  • Not the best work of Vitek Vanecek on the two goals of the second. He was knocked off his skates by Nick Foligno and lost his crease on Lazar’s goal. He was then beaten by a deep slapper from Haula where he looked off the angle and left the far side too open. Just a reminder that he and Ilya Samsonov are restricted free agents after this season. Hard to say either got a long-term contract.
  • Thomas Wilson scored his 23rd goal of the season. This is his unique new season, a career high in goals, and also his 50th point which is the first time in his career that he has reached this mark. He’s been great lately.
  • Really, really good third straight periods. This one is even better considering how tired they must have been.
  • Trent Frederic, it’s like Brad Marchand sucks at hockey.
  • The referees have certainly chosen a side in this game. Four power plays for the Bruins in a row. One looked directly at Conor Sheary tripping two feet in front of him and just let him go. Really made friends with the local crowd. Don Koharski was an NHL referee by the way.

The Flyers are in town next Tuesday. They’re terrible and play a bunch of guys I’ve never heard of. Caps should to win.

Title photo courtesy of @pennybacker/RMNB Crasher

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