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Capitals vs. Canadiens Recap: Caps Give Up Only One, But That's All It Takes as Habs Win in OT

Red lights were dark in regulation, but one lit up in overtime in the wrong end of the ice as the Caps dropped a heartbreaker.

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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It was a master class in goaltending as the Caps' Braden Holtby and the Canadiens' Carey Price put on a show.  In the end, only one goal would be scored, and it would not be the Caps getting it.  Max Pacioretty scored on a redirect from his stomach over Holtby's pad as the Habs won in overtime, 1-0.

Saturday afternoon's Plus/Minus:

  • Plus: Team Defense. Washington held the Canadiens to a total of 13 shots on goal over the first two periods.  While they faltered a bit in the third period, it was still a solid effort.
  • Minus: Luck. The Caps hit three posts, none of them ricocheting in.  It is not enough that Carey Price is arguably the best goalie in the league at the moment, but did he have to be lucky, too?

Ten more notes on today's game:

  • This was the fifth time in the Capitals' last seven games at Bell Centre that they did not allow a goal to Montreal in regulation (four shutouts).
  • The goal scored by the Canadiens in overtime was just the second allowed by the Caps at 4-on-4 this season.  The other one was in a 3-1 win over the Calgary Flames on October 25th.
  • How good were the Caps in denying shots getting to the net? Montreal defensemen managed only four shots on goal in 22 attempts.
  • Jason Chimera had a rough game.  He skated only 13 shifts and 8:20 in ice time and finished the game with no entries on his score sheet.
  • Brooks Laich did a lot of good in this one.  In just 15 minutes and change of ice time, Laich had four shots on goal, five hits, three blocked shots, drew three penalties (one coincidental) and was a plus-13 in Corsi at 5-on-5
  • The Caps had five power plays, the most they have had in a game in over a month (five in a 3-0 win over Pittsburgh on December 27th).
  • Carey Price was sublime, but Braden Holtby held his own.  Holtby has allowed just one goal in his last 137:27, dating back to the third period of the Caps' 4-3 loss to Columbus last Tuesday.  He has stopped 64 of 65 shots in that span (.985).
  • Alex Ovechkin was held without a goal for the first time in his last four games at Bell Centre (4-2-6) despite leading all players with eight shots on goal.
  • Montreal's shooting was unbalanced almost to the point of tipping over.  Christian Thomas (six), Max Pacioretty (seven) and Tomas Plekanec (six) accounted for 19 of Montreal's 30 shots on goal.  Eight of the 18 skaters were held without a shot on goal.
  • Goaltenders are a small fraternity, and it showed something of the respect they have for one another when, just before the start of overtime, Holtby and Price crossed center ice heading to opposite ends of the ice, and they exchanged stick-taps to the pads in acknowledgment of a fine effort by both.

Game Highlights: