Sunday, 15 April 2012
Caps Beat Boston 2-1 (OT), Series 1-1
It took a while, but we got there. Predictably, this game did not have many goals and was forced into overtime again - but this time, Holtby had learnt his lessons for overtime. The Caps did what they needed to do, they played physical, and shot. A lot.
They outhit the Bruins 41-36, with Ovi flattening Krejci for his second big hit of the series. The offense came back as well, with 39 shots, and improvement on 17 in game 1. They were still unable to match the Bruins total of 44 shots, but it's the ones that go in that count, right?
-The Caps got the first goal, with Troy Brouwer putting in a scrappy pass from Ovi that was loose in the crease. Old man Thomas' weak spot is definitely in this sort of area.
- It wasn't going to be easy, though with Benoit Pouliot scoring a goal levelling the score, and then crashed into Holtby's head. The goal stood, and Pouliot didn't even get a minor.
- The game continued into a nail-biting overtime (with unbelievable hockey by Semin), and then into a second overtime. A couple of minutes in, the Bruins won a defensive zone faceoff so I grabbed my phone and worked out Holtby's save percentage, assuming nothing was happening. But then, the Bruins coughed up the puck to Marcus Johansson, who fed it back to Nick Backstrom on the faceoff dot. Nicky ripped a wrister past Thomas. This was my reaction on twitter, with a math fail on the first tweet:
-Thomas ran back to the locker room. Either to cry or to go to the bathroom (it was a long night to be fair.)
The real hero of this game didn't even get into the three stars, and unjustly in most peoples' opinions. Braden Holtby. In his second playoff game, he conceded one goal, and had a save percentage of .977, saving 43 of 44 shots and getting the 'Beanton Beatdown' treatment all through the game.
So, the series has now swung in the Caps favour. The series is tied, and the Caps now have more home games than Boston, and whilst regular season stats aren't much to go by, the fact remains that the Caps were 16-21-4 on the road and 26-11-4 at home. It's fairly obvious where the advantage lies. With a bit of luck, the next two games may be the only times the Caps play at home this series.
Monday night. It's going down in Chinatown.
By the way, I won't be live tweeting that game. It's on at 12:30 AM UK time and I'll have hockey practice anyway.