COLUMBUS — Lars Eller scored off the toe of his skate in double overtime and the Caps earned a 3-2 victory over Columbus at Nationwide Arena in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals on Tuesday night.
The Blue Jackets now lead the series 2-1. Game 4 is in Columbus on Thursday.
It marked the third time in three games that this series required overtime. But here’s the whopper for Washington: Alex Ovechkin and Co. have played beyond regulation in 12 of their last 22 playoff games.
Tarik's Three Stars of Capitals vs. Blue Jackets Game 3
1. Lars Eller, Capitals
At 9:00 of the second OT, Eller scored exactly the type of goal that usually decides games like these: the third line center crashed the net and swiped wildly at the puck, just hoping to get a piece of it.
Instead, the puck pinballed off a defender before eventually hitting the toe of Eller's skate and eluding Sergei Bobrovsky (42 saves).
2. Tom Wilson, Capitals
The game got off to a forgettable start for Wilson as the big winger was whistled for his third penalty of the series—a questionable high sticking infraction. Fortunately for him, though, this one didn’t cost the Caps.
Then, early in the second period, No. 43 redeemed himself in a big way: he put the visitors ahead 1-0 with a redirection of Matt Niskanen’s point shot.
The goal was Wilson’s first point of the playoffs. He finished with a team-high six shots on net.
3. Artemi Panarin, Blue Jackets
The Breadman (almost) did it again.
After a turnover by Dmitry Orlov, Panarin and Cam Atkinson were off to the races. The speedy duo played catch a couple of times, then Panarin rifled a shot past Braden Holtby, who was solid in making 33 stops, to knot the score 2-2 early in the third period.
Panarin also had an assist.
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