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Ovechkin takes over in third period to fuel Caps to the win


Ovechkin takes over in third period to fuel Caps to the win

Sometimes a team needs its star players to be at their best. With the Caps trailing in the third period on Tuesday, that's what the Caps needed on Tuesday and Alex Ovechkin responded.

With the Caps down 2-1 entering the third, Ovechkin emphatically took over the game. Early in the period as Detroit tried to break out of their own zone, Ovechkin flattened the unsuspecting Dylan Larkin, forcing him to lose the puck in the neutral zone. The Caps took over and Ovechkin nearly scored on the ensuing possession.

"I noticed it from the drop of the puck that he was skating, he was hitting, he was shooting the puck and when you've got your leader playing that way, you jump on board," T.J. Oshie said.

The Caps' captain continued to play at a different speed from everyone else later in the third as he zipped his way behind the Red Wings' defense with the puck, forcing former Cap Mike Green to haul him down from behind to prevent the breakaway. Ovechkin argued for a penalty shot, but had to settle for the power play instead.

"He took a puck to the net," Braden Holtby said. "Obviously he's a hard man to stop that way. He's going to draw penalties."

RELATED: Capitals beat Red Wings in shootout to regain first place

The Caps would not convert, but they would cash in after the Great 8 generated a second penalty, this time a hook from Brendan Smith. On the power play, Marcus Johansson took the puck from behind the red line and tried to whirl around and stuff it past goalie Jimmy Howard. Howard made the initial save, but lost the puck in the ensuing scrum. The puck trickled to Howard's right where a charging Ovechkin was just able to hit it into the net to tie the game at two.

"Obviously he can finish better than anyone in the league," Holtby said.

With the goal, the Caps were able to force overtime and eventually win it 3-2 in a shootout. They are now 7-0 in games following a loss this season.

That would not have been possible without Ovechkin finding that extra gear in the third.

"He was moving his legs, he was using his big body, he got a big hit, drew some penalties," head coach Barry Trotz said. "I mean, he was really good tonight."

Ovechkin drew two penalties, laid out Larkin and scored the game-tying goal all in the final period.

Practically the only think Ovechkin didn't give the Caps in the third was a partridge in a pear tree.

MORE CAPITALS: Capitals beat Red Wings in shootout to regain first place

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Being an Olympic hero is not all T.J. Oshie has in common with 2018 U.S. Women's hockey team

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Being an Olympic hero is not all T.J. Oshie has in common with 2018 U.S. Women's hockey team

Four years ago, Capitals forward T.J. Oshie was the shootout king in the 2014 Sochi Olympics. This time around Gigi Marvin was one of the Americans who provided the extra-time heroics for Team USA at Pyeongchang, carrying the women’s hockey team to the gold medal.

Ironically enough, they both were the King and Queen of their high school’s dance back in 2005.

Marvin and Oshie both went to Warroad High School in Minnesota. They graduated from the same class in 2005. Nearly every high school in the country would wish for just one Olympian, this one got two legends in one class.

Oshie famously took the puck six times for Team USA in a shootout to beat Russia back in 2014. Marvin scored the first tally of the shootout in the gold medal game against Canada. The United States would go on to win the match in seven rounds.

Oshie would go on to congratulate his fellow Warroad alum after the match.

Whoever cast the deciding votes, must have known that these two destined for glory. One could now call them the King and Queen of Olympic shootouts.


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Caps prospect watch: Boyd dedicates 4-goal performance to daughter after week in the hospital


Caps prospect watch: Boyd dedicates 4-goal performance to daughter after week in the hospital

It would have been understandable if Travis Boyd struggled this past week. Something more important was on his mind.

Boyd spent the week in the hospital with his daughter, Hayden, who had been experiencing pain in her throat. He spent the enitre week in the hospital, not leaving until Hershey's game against Laval.

Boyd turned this trial into something incredible as he scored four goals Friday in Hershey's 6-3 win.

Boyd spoke about the ordeal with Zach Fisch of the Bears Radio Network (transcription via RMNB).

“It actually started after the game last Sunday against Rochester," he said. "I went straight from the rink to Urgent Care and then from Urgent Care to the ER. Never left the hospital until Friday morning. We had a successful surgery on Thursday night. Basically just a bad infection in her throat that had to be surgically removed. They had to surgically go in and kind of remove the bacteria and drain out the fluids. Everything went well. She’s doing well.”

Following the game, Boyd dedicated his performance to Hayden.

A four-goal game at the AHL level would have been an incredible accomplishment on its own. The fact that it came during such a trying time for him makes this a truly inspirational story.

You can watch highlights of the game including all four of Boyd's goals here:


Other prospect notes:

  • In the Bears' game Friday against Laval, Riley Barber dropped the gloves with Markus Eisenchmid.  Barber was given an extra minor and game misconduct for instigating the fight in the final five minutes of the game. That penalty carries with it an automatic one-game suspension which Barber served Saturday. Here's a look at the fight.

  • Liam O'Brien had a pair of two-goal games over the week, scoring twice against Laval Friday and then two more against Toronto on Monday. Of his four goals, three of them were empty netters.
  • As the Capitals prepare for their Stadium Series game in Annapolis on March 3, Annapolis mayor Gavin Buckley—a native of Perth, Australia—made a plea to see Nathan Walker recalled for the game.  “I’ll have to put a quick shout out to the one Australian that’s playing for the Caps now, Nathan Walker. If you could just bring him up for this game, that’d be great. Because an Australian being in a hockey game is like a Jamaican bobsled team. It doesn’t happen very often.”

  • Brian Pinho was honored Friday in Providence College's Senior Night. He has served as captain of the team this season and as an assistant captain in his junior year. He spoke with The Cowl on what being a leader on the team means to him. "I think being a leader of this team is a great honor, but also a huge responsibility. I try to keep everything fun at the rink, while also bringing some intensity and competing hard every day.” You can read the full story here.
  • Goalie Adam Carlson, who was on loan to the Indy Fuel of the ECHL, was reassigned to the Kansas City Mavericks also of the ECHL. He started two games for his new team and turned aside 42 of the 48 total shots he faced.

Who are the Caps' top 10 prospects? Find out here in his week's updated rankings.