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Referee told Trotz it was Orpik's second push, not his first, that cost Caps in coach's challenge

Referee told Trotz it was Orpik's second push, not his first, that cost Caps in coach's challenge

Monday’s game between the Caps and Dallas Stars was not without controversy. Less than two minutes into the game, Devin Shore appeared to block Braden Holtby’s path in the crease allowing for a wraparound attempt that Shore was eventually able to knock into the net to give Dallas the early lead.

Barry Trotz immediately challenged for goalie interference, but the goal stood because Brooks Orpik pushed Shore into the crease. You can read more on the challenge here.

“I knew it was going to be close,” Trotz said. “Originally we see Brooks pushes or crosschecks their guy a little bit into the crease. [Shore] doesn't really try to get out of there. He was just sort of standing there and he wasn't trying to get out.”

RELATED: Seeing Holtby pulled was 'biggest disappointment' of Monday's loss

While Orpik certainly did push Shore into the crease, Shore also makes no effort to leave which prompted Trotz to challenge the goal. After losing the challenge, Trotz said the referee explained to him that the deciding factor was not the initial push, but what happened afterward.

“[Orpik] gives him another little shot because he's on top of our goalie. If he doesn't do that I think it probably comes back our way,” Trotz said. “Even the referee says that's close, the only reason I say no is Brooks gave him a sort of a little second one.”

Washington ultimately lost on Monday because of their poor start to the game. The Caps dug themselves a 3-0 deficit before the team began to turn things around in the second period. If the first goal had been taken off the board, perhaps it could have given the Caps the wakeup call they needed in the early going.

Despite knowing the call would be close, Trotz knew it was a gamble worth taking.

“[Shore’s] effort level to get out of the crease wasn't great,” Trotz said. “I knew it was going to be close, we knew that was going to be a little bit, but I would do it again.”


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3 reasons the Caps beat the Stars

3 reasons the Caps beat the Stars

The Washington Capitals had not beaten the Dallas Stars at home since 2006, Alex Ovechkin's second season in the NHL. That streak ended on Tuesday in a 4-3 Caps win.

Here's how the Caps were finally able to down Dallas in Washington.

Oshie still hot

After going 19 straight games without a goal, T.J. Oshie has been red-hot of late with four goals in his last four games. He scored Washington’s first goal in what would become a three-goal period for the Caps as they battled back from a 1-0 deficit into a 3-3 tie through 40 minutes. Oshie also added an assist as he won a power play faceoff that John Carlson fed to Alex Ovechkin for the goal.


Ovechkin victimizing his favorite target

You knew Ovechkin would score given he was playing against one of his favorite targets. With his second period goal, Ovechkin now has 22 goals against Kari Lehtonen in his career, tied with Henrik Lundqvist for the most goals he has scored on any netminder. Lehtonen has not been in the Eastern Conference since the 2008-09 season. When he goes to sleep at night, Ovechkin is who he sees in his nightmares.

The Carlson-Klingberg duel

Carlson and John Klingberg entered Tuesday’s game each with 59 points, tied for the league lead in points among defensemen. Carlson downplayed the matchup both before and after the game, but it was clear that both players were playing at another level all game long. While both players tallied two points on the night, you have to give the win to Carlson as he had the most significant point, a game-winning goal in the third period.


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Tarik's 3 Stars: Ovechkin further cements his place in history

Tarik's 3 Stars: Ovechkin further cements his place in history

Alex Ovechkin further cemented his place in NHL history, John Carlson stayed hot and Braden Holtby was good when called upon as the Caps downed the Stars, 4-3, at Capital One Arena on Tuesday night.

The victory was Washington’s fifth in the past six games. It also marked the Caps’ first win over Dallas in D.C. since 2006.

Tarik’s three stars of the game:

1-Alex Ovechkin, Capitals

Ovechkin scored his 44th goal of the season and the 602nd of his career in the second period to give the Caps a short-lived 3-2 edge in the second period.

The goal put Ovi back atop the league as he seeks a seventh Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy. It also pushed him past Jari Karri and into sole possession of 19th place on the NHL’s all-time list. Ovechkin has now victimized Kari Lehtonen 22 times, which is tied for the most goals he’s scored against a single netminder. (Henrik Lundqvist has also given up 22 goals to No. 8). Ovi also had a couple of secondary helpers.

2-John Carlson, Capitals

Carlson scored the game-winner 4:59 with left to play, blasting a one-timer past Lehtonen to put the Caps ahead 4-3.

Carlson also notched an assist, which allowed him to stay even with Dallas’ John Klingberg. Klingberg had two assists. Both players ended the game with 61 points—tied for the most among all NHL defensemen.    

3-Alexander Radulov, Stars

From his first shift, it was apparent that Radulov was determined to leave his mark on the game. And he did just that, recording a goal, an assist and boarding minor that bloodied Caps defenseman Michal Kempny. Radulov’s goal—a redirection of a John Klingberg shot—was his 26th and it evened the score, 2-2, in the second period.

Agree? Disagree? Let us know what you think in the comments.