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Morning After: Hendrix Lapierre, Sens Killer

Feb 26, 2024; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper (35) makes a save on Ottawa Senators right wing Vladimir Tarasenko (91) in the second period at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Washington Capitals were firing on all cylinders against the visiting Senators last night, jumping out to a 2-0 lead early and then building on it through the first 40 minutes to a 6-3 final. With so many players on the shelf with various ailments – including Sonny Milano, a late scratch with an illness – it was up to a lot of the team’s secondary scorers (and beyond) to find the offense, and they did just that.

Nice to see Beck Malenstyn get on the scoresheet, and of course, Max Pacioretty with his long-awaited second goal of the season, and good job by special teams to go two-for-three (and kill off their only penalty).

Three Takeaways:

  • As mentioned on the broadcast, Hendrix Lapierre now has five goals in the last week against the Senators’ organization, picking up a hat trick exactly one week earlier and then following it up with a pair of goals last night – his first multigoal game in the NHL.
  • With just 41 shots on goal tonight (20 for the Caps, 21 for Ottawa), this was the lowest shot total of any Caps game this season, although the Sens, as one would expect, did start piling up shot attempts after falling behind 4-2 and then 6-3. The Caps may have some bruises after this one, as well, as they blocked 28 shots to the Sens’ 7.
  • On the scoresheet, it looks like the Caps didn’t do a great job of containing Ottawa’s top-six forwards, with both lines dominating the possession battle…but there were really only a few times where they felt truly dangerous, and the line of Brady Tkachuk, Shane Pinto and Vladimir Tarasenko was the only one to actually break through where it mattered. Considering how young and banged-up the Caps’ defense is right now…we’ll take it.

They Said It:

Talking Points