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Capitals vs. Canadiens Recap: Washington Wins Sixth Straight

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Evgeny Kuznetsov’s third period tally stands as the game winning goal to extend Washington’s winning streak to six games

NHL: Washington Capitals at Montreal Canadiens Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Braden Holtby and the Capitals arrived in Montreal with a two game shutout, and five game winning, looking to continue. Holtby’s bid for his third straight shutout was spoiled in the third period but Washington forged ahead for their sixth straight, beating the Canadiens 4 to 1.

First up, Monday night’s Plus/Minus.

  • Plus: Tonight was the 27th game of this season where Washington got on the scoreboard before their opponents. That always helps.
  • Minus: Holtby’s shutout streak was snapped by Tomas Plekanec of all players. Sigh.

Nine more notes on the game:

  • Nicklas Backstrom got the scoring started tonight in the game’s 11th minute. A low, hard shot from Alex Ovechkin forced Carey Price to yield a rebound, which Backstrom found and deposited on his backhand.
  • The Capitals outshot their hosts in the first period by five (12 to 7), allowing them to get comfortable before heading into the first intermission.
  • After forty minutes of play Washington had nearly doubled up Montreal in shots on goal (29 to 15). After recording less than 10 SOG in each period of play Saturday night the Capitals made a concerted effort to put the puck on net tonight.
  • But it was the Canadiens who would score next with a power play goal seven minutes into the third period. Montreal was scrambling around the crease and it was Plekanec finding the puck and whipping it past Holtby to tie the game at one.
  • Barry Trotz challenged Plekanec’s goal, hoping for it to be overturned based on Hotlby’s immediate reaction, but that movement was denied after a short review.
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov was just waiting for his next chance, though, which came just 54 seconds later. The dangler walked Jeff Petry and fired a quick shot up and over Price to restore Washington’s one goal lead and silence Bell Centre.
  • Brett Connolly then snapped home a low shot to guarantee victory a little less than three minutes later. Kuznetsov forced a turnover to Price’s right and the puck was quickly in the back of the net behind Price after a sharp pass.
  • And with a late man advantage the Capitals bested Price one more time. This time it was Ovechkin whipping a wrist shot to the far post that squeezed in. Ovechkin is now a single point shy of career point 1,000.
  • T.J. Oshie was out of the lineup with an injury after colliding with Dion Phaneuf Saturday night in Ottawa. In Oshie’s place was Liam O’Brien, the three year professional, from the Hershey Bears.

Game Highlights: