Backstrom Checks Stewart
courtesy of clydeorama
Well folks, it looks like we might just have a series on our hands. And if you are a hockey, what a series this is turning out to be. The Caps took on the Bruins in a Saturday matinee game that required five periods to complete, but in the end, the bonus hockey ended up being well worth the wait with the Caps securing a 2-1 win to bring a tied series back to Washington on Monday.
Just over two minutes into the second overtime frame, Nicklas Backstrom took a pass from behind the net by Marcus Johansson and beat Bruins’ goalie Tim Thomas up high to end the game, sending the mercurial goalie quickly to the locker room in a huff. The Capitals celebrated their win in front of a dejected Boston crowd, save for a few jubilant fans in red jerseys scattered throughout.
The game was another tight one, remaining scoreless until almost the end of the second period, when Troy Brouwer tapped a loose puck past Thomas to put the Caps in the lead. The Caps played sound defense, and it looked as though they might have enough to hang on for the win, but with seven minutes left in the game, the Bruins evened up the score.
Rookie goaltender Braden Holtby over-committed to a poke check on Benoit Pouliot, who was able to backhand the puck into a yawning net to tie the game. Holtby, however, despite what some (clearly partisan) critics were claiming, turned in his second stellar effort in as many games, stopping 43 of 44 shots by the Bruins. The Caps defense also helped out the goalie, blocking a whopping 27 shots before they even got to the keeper.
The fact that the young goalie is gaining confidence and playing with a chip on his shoulder, perhaps owing both to his draft position and goalie confusion early in the season, couldn’t come at a better time for the Caps, who are without the services of Tomas Vokoun and Michal Neuvirth, due to injuries.
The series heads back to DC tomorrow night, with the Caps hosting the Bruins at 7:30pm at the Verizon Center.