The Washington Capitals needed a win and they got one in overtime. The problems that resulted in back to back losses against the Devils and Blues persisted in Tuesday night's game, but at some point you need to just put some points in the bank. Thanks to: the goaltending of Braden Holtby, a guy whose last name is a breed of dog, and a player who seems unable to get out of his coach's doghouse... the Caps were able to pick up the two points.
Ten more notes on the game
- You might have thought that taking Jay Beagle off of the top line was going to lead for more offense. But did you think that offense was going to come from Jay Beagle? Probably not. Well the lovable
firstthird-liner got the Capitals on the board early... which apparently has been a problem of late.
- Guess what else has been a problem? Drawing penalties while on the road. The Caps had as many power plays after the first period as they had over the entirety of their two previous road games (one), and were up to a whopping three power-plays through two periods
- The Capitals failed to register a shot attempt in the first 11:52 of the second period, Puck possession might not dictate who wins an individual game, but it is hard to score when you are not even taking a shot at your opponents net.
- Tom Wilson has been making some big hits, sometimes even without a helmet; unfortunately the puck possession has simply not been there when Wilson is playing with the Capitals' big guns. It's hard to know how much of this lies with Wilson, but there are a few other options on the roster that may be worth examining.
- If the Capitals are going to get back on track, they'll need Braden Holtby to play better. He did have a fantastic game against the Devils... but still was the reason that the team gave up the game's only goal. Tonight was another step in the right direction, as he had an exceptional game against the Coyotes - aside from being caught a bit out of position on Arizona's lone goal - stopping 20 of 21 shots he faced in regulation and 23 of 24 overall.
- John Carlson looked like he was stuck in quicksand when he took an unnecessary interference penalty in the second period. The Caps defense, and specifically the pairing of Carlson and Orpik specifically, has looked very slow over the last few games. It should be noted that their possession numbers were not the worst among defensemen last night, however; that honor resides with the Matt Niskanen-Karl Alzner pairing.
- So it's been a while (over a full three games now) since the Caps have seen a goal from any of their top-six forwards.
- With the game tied entering the third, the Caps took the novel approach of trying to produce some offense rather than trying to lock it down. In fact, they generated more shots in the first 10 minutes of the third period than they did in the entirety of the second.
- Nate Schmidt has continued to impress in his time with the big club. His possession has been (and continues to be) solid, and he consistently removed Coyotes from the puck tonight, most noticeably during the third period.
- Despite seemingly being in his coach's doghouse Eric Fehr found himself on the ice during overtime, and he made the most of that opportunity. Fehr banged home a rebound off of a Brooks Orpik shot to give the Caps the win. Perhaps this goal will serve as a springboard for Fehr as he attempts to solidify his position within the lineup.
It certainly was not pretty, but the Caps came out of Arizona with two much-needed points.