Things did not start out well for the Caps on Wednesday as the Philadelphia Flyers jumped out to a 2-0 lead early in the first period. Washington battled back, however, and scored five straight goals en route to a 5-3 win in their first game back from the All-Star Break.
Here's why the Caps pulled out their first win over the Flyers this season.
Chandler Stephenson's first 2nd period shift
The Caps found themselves trailing 2-0 at the start of the second. Stephenson's first shift of the period lasted 1:03 and by the end of it, the game was tied. Stephenson scored two goals in a span of just 47 seconds to tie the game, the first multi-goal game in his NHL career. Lars Eller chased the puck down in the corner of the offensive zone to negate an icing call, then threw the puck on net from the sharp angle. It caught Flyers goalie Michal Neuvirth by surprise and hit off his pad. He went down to the butterfly, but didn't know where the puck was until Stephenson tipped it in. On the second goal, Madison Bowey threw a long-distance pass from the defensive zone up to Stephenson to catch Philadelphia on a bad change and spring a breakaway goal.
Lars Eller putting the puck in the crease
Eller has been one of the hottest scorers on the team of late. He did not score in Wednesday's contest, but did record two primary assists by forcing the puck into the crease looking for dirty goals. Stephenson's first goal came on a hustle play by Eller who simply threw the puck at Neuvirth when he wasn't expecting it. On the second, he had the puck in the opposite corner on the power play and threw a pass to the crease that was tipped in by Andre Burakovsky.
After Stephenson tied the game at 2, the power play took over. The Caps' next two goals came on the man advantage as Washington took a 4-2 lead. The Caps would finish with two power play goals on three opportunities.
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Lost amid a two-goal first period and all the excitement of the second was just how good Holtby was. When the Caps tied the game at 2, the Flyers tried to answer right back and Holtby was called upon to make a number of key saves to keep the game tied, like this one:
Without his outstanding effort, Philadelphia could have easily reclaimed momentum and this would have been a very different game.