The Washington Capitals have learned how the Florida Panthers garnered the best record in the NHL the hard way a first-round playoff series they now trail 3-2.
During the 2021-22 season, the Panthers won 29 games where they needed to come from behind, including back on November 30th when Florida was down three goals against the Capitals and scored four goals in the third period to win 5-4.
Peter Laviolette's squad knows firsthand from the regular season that a multiple-goal lead against the Panthers isn't safe. Nine of those 29 comeback wins saw Florida having to overcome a 2-plus goal deficit, which they have done in these last two wins against the Capitals.
Washington had a two-goal lead in Game 4 and a three-goal lead in Game 5, but Washington came out on the losing end and now find themselves in a 3-2 series hole.
Carter Verhaeghe played the hero role for the latest come-from-behind win as the Game 5 victory marked the first time in this series where a team won back-to-back games.
"Yeah, I think in the second period, we started playing a lot better and getting pucks on net, and I mean, we got the fans behind us this second, so we got a lot of momentum," Verhaeghe told Bally Sports Florida. "I mean, it was a great win. It's just nice to come back to home ice and get a win and go back to Washington."
The Capitals now find themselves on the ropes, but on the positive side, they'll play their next game at home. Washington will hope to secure a win and Game 6 to force a win or go home Game 7 back in South Florida.
All first-round games of Capitals vs. Panthers will be available regionally on NBC Sports Washington and streamed live on the MyTeams app.