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Capitals @ Flyers Recap: Connolly’s Two Goals Power the Capitals Past the Flyers, 5-2

Connolly notches two, Tom Wilson hits 20 goals in 5-2 win over Flyers.

NHL: Washington Capitals at Philadelphia Flyers Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Despite doing their very best to squander a two goal cushion in the later stages of the game, the Capitals downed their Metropolitan Division foes the Flyers 5-2. The third line made its presence known throughout the game, with Brett Connolly in particular having a strong showing.

Nice for the team to get two points after a tough loss in Pittsburgh earlier this week.

Here is Thursday’s Plus/Minus:

Plus: Brett Connolly scored two goals and had one assist for his third career three point game. Great to see Conno having a career year with 19 goals and 39 points on the season – less great thinking about contract negotiations in the summer. Whatever! We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.

Minus: The Capitals took a number of penalties in the third period, which is less than ideal when you want to win a game. As much as we like seeing the PK on the upswing, we’d like it even more not to have to see the PK.

And now, here’s ten more notes on tonight’s game:

  • The Capitals put good pressure on rookie goaltender Carter Hart, who returned for his first game since sustaining an ankle injury. Can you believe Carter Hart is just 20 years old? Do you know what I was doing at 20 years old? Showing up to discussion sections at uni for books I didn’t read! Also this was a year ago and I still have not learned my lesson.
  • Brett Connolly opened scoring for the Caps at 2:53 of the opening period, and he looked very excited about it.
Cheer up, bud! You’re having a career year!
  • Lars Eller put the Caps up two-zip with a goal on the rebound after some messy play by the Flyers in their own zone. The third line really making their presence known in this game.
  • The Flyers came back with a bit more of a pulse to start the second period period. James van Riemsdyk cuts the Caps lead in half with a goal after a Tom Wilson drop pass got picked off at the other end.
  • Not to fear, because Connolly gets his second of the night with a dart out alone from the circle. That’s his third point of the night for those counting at home, putting him just one point away from reaching 40 on the season. Go get that money, honey! #contractyear
  • Tommy joins the fun and notches his 20th goal of the season, making it the first time in his career that Wilson hit that benchmark. Dmitry Orlov and Evgeny Kuznetsov get helpers on the goal with a nice passing play.
  • Scott Laughton gets one back for the Flyers after a breakdown in coverage in front of the net and the Caps’ lead is back to two. I’m going to be honest, I am not convinced these Flyers are real. Scott Laughton? Phil Varone? Corban Knight? Isn’t that last guy from High School Musical? Who even knows.
  • Claude Giroux just says ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ and goes for a unique wraparound attempt as his Flyers go down 4-2 heading into the third period. Caps outshooting the Flyers 25-14.
  • The Capitals play some four-on-four after an Evgeny Kuznetsov penalty negates their short-lived man advantage midway through the third period. Almost immediately after four-on-four expires, Nicklas Backstrom is called for hooking. The Caps’ PK unit gets stranded in their own end for a whopping 1:56 shift. It gets worse! Nick Jensen is called for interference against Nolan Patrick and I am just as tired as the PK unit, probably.
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov puts the final nail in the coffin with an emptynetter and the Caps walk away with two points.

Up next: the Capitals take on the league-leading Tampa Bay Lightning. My emotions can about this can be explained with the following tweets: