clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Caps v. Rangers Recap: Panarin and Co. Power Rangers to 5-2 win against the Caps

New, comments

Caps blow a 2-0 lead after the Rangers respond with 5 unanswered goals against Vitek Vanecek.

NHL: Washington Capitals at New York Rangers POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

Despite being in 6th place in the East, the Rangers somehow account for nearly half of the Caps regulation losses this season. However, the Caps have won 2 of their last 3 against the Blueshirts, including a wild 5-4 win on Sunday.

Tonight, the Capitals welcome back Lars Eller, who has missed the last 7 games. Getting the boot, surprisingly, is Richard Panik, who sits despite being one of the Caps better defensive forwards. In net is Vitek Vanecek, who is trying to extend his winning streak to 5 games, during which he’s had a 928 save percentage and a 1.99 GAA.

Here’s Tuesday evening’s Plus/Minus:

Plus: The Caps got off to an excellent start against the Rangers, taking a 2-0 lead and generating a number of great chances against the Rangers. They weren’t able to keep up the pace, but it was an enthusiastic way to start Tuesday evening’s tilt.

Minus: ...pretty much everything after that. The Caps allowed 5 straight goals after taking a 2-0 lead, blowing yet another lead this year. It’s hard to argue with the Caps success in March, but this isn’t a trend you’d like to see continue.

And now, this:

Here’s some more notes on tonight’s game:

  • The Caps powerplay hasn’t been great of late...but they got an early marker to open up the scoring tonight. After a solid zone entry, the Caps were able to rotate the buck around to Nicklas Backstrom. Backstrom feathered a pretty pass to T.J. Oshie in the slot, who ripped a shot past the high glove side of Igor Shesterkin to give the Caps a 1-0 lead.
  • The Caps then quickly made it 2-0 on a goal that, frankly, was kind of hard to comprehend. After a hardworking shift by the Caps fourth line, Nic Dowd was able to slide the puck in past Shesterkin to extend the Caps lead. The shift also featured really strong work by Carl Hagelin, who stood right at the netfront to make Shesterkin’s life difficult.
  • The Rangers then got a goal back on a breakaway by Filip Chytil. The speedy center ripped off Dmitry Orlov on the blueline, then went backhand-forehand past Vanecek to make the game 2-1.
  • The first period was a tale of two periods in a way. The Caps got off to an excellent start and featured a number of strong chances...though the Rangers quickly surged back in the last few minutes. Although the period was relatively even from a possession standpoint, the Caps powerplay goal provided the edge in giving them a 2-1 lead at the end of the 1st.
  • Not much happened that was all that exciting for the Caps in first part of the second period. The Rangers did an effective job of clogging the neutral zone, and the Caps weren’t able to convert on a powerplay (though Conor Sheary came very close, as his shot glanced off the post).
  • ...and not much happened in the later half of the second period either, as the Caps ended the period with a 2-1 lead.
  • The Caps third period struggles continued to start the third. Artemi Panarin picked off of a questionable pass by Zdeno Chara, and was able to funnel it to Kaapo Kakko. Kakko made no mistake, evening the game at 2.
  • And just minutes later, off of a defensive zone turnover, Adam Fox made a gorgeous move to his backhand to give the Rangers a 3-2 lead. The Rangers might just have found a franchise defensemen in the Jericho native.
  • The Caps had quite a push in the third, but they left Panarin all alone at the blue line. Brendan Smith was able to find him, and Panarin made no mistake on the breakaway, giving the Rangers a 4-2 lead.
  • Pavel Buchnevich iced the game for the Caps off an offensive-zone turnover, burying a shot into the empty net and giving the Rangers the final 5-2 result.