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New Jersey came into Washington for the second of back to back contests and pressed the Capitals early. It took awhile but the home team got their legs going and were able to flex their offensive muscle late to beat Cory Schneider and the Devils.
First up here's Saturday night's Plus/Minus:
- Plus: T.J. Oshie skated in his 500th career NHL game tonight (344 career points), over 10% of which have now been with the Washington Capitals organization. He played a key role in tonight's late comeback.
- Minus: Braden Holtby allowed three goals on 25 Devils shots for a .875 SV%. He wasn't at his sharpest tonight but escaped with a win thanks to his teammate's late offensive push.
Ten more notes on the game.
- New Jersey began the contest by outshooting the Capitals six to zero. Holtby had to make several great saves early including a dandy against Jacob Josefson on a breakaway straight out of the penalty box.
- Less than two minutes later the Devils got the scoring started with Travis Zajac stuffing home a loose puck in the slot. A speedy wrap around by Kyle Palmieri had Holtby out of position and it afforded Zajac an opening he wouldn't miss.
- Alex Ovechkin tied the game less than one hundred seconds later from a wide open opportunity in the slot. Dmitry Orlov took advantage of a poor New Jersey clearing attempt and slap passed the puck to Ovechkin who fired it home for his sixth goal in seven games.
- Before the first period could come to an end Palmieri put a puck past Holtby from beneath the goal line to the left of the crease. A smart looking shot put the visitors ahead by one after the opening twenty minutes and gave the visitors new life entering the locker room.
- 44 seconds before the game's midway mark Evgeny Kuznetsov scored off of a nice feed from Michael Latta to gain momentum back. Puck possession and awareness from Latta and Laich led to Kuznetsov's chance and the game tying tally.
- The Capitals played much improved hockey in the game's second twenty minutes and outshot the Devils 12 to 4 in the second period. Unlike in the first period they were able to put constant and consistent pressure on Schneider and his defensemen.
- Both Stephen Gionta and Andre Burakovsky hit iron before the third period's ten minute mark putting the Verizon Center crowd on the edge of their seats.
- With eight minutes left in the game Reid Boucher sent a wrist shot from above the right faceoff circle that handcuffed Holtby and put the visitors ahead again. The long range attempt was deflected by a friendly stick and dipped between the goaltender's glove and left leg pad. Boucher's goal was his third point of the night, the third year pro involved in all of New Jersey's offense tonight.
- Oshie was the beneficiary of a fortunate bounce off of Seth Helgeson's skate in the crease that tied the game with six minutes left. From his knees he slapped a backhanded shot that rolled its way over the goal line and got the home crowd on their feet.
- Brooks Orpik completed the comeback by scoring his second goal of the year on a one timed shot courtesy of a no look Kuznetsov pass. Washington was in the lead for the first time with only three minutes on the clock and they would ride Orpik's late goal to two points in regulation.