A miscue and penalty prone Caps’ team failed to extend their streak on home ice Monday night, falling to Johnny Gaudreau and the Flames, 4-1.
The defeat halted Washington’s five-game winning streak at Capital One Arena, two nights after the Caps had seemingly steadied themselves with a sound victory over the Wild on F Street.
Monday’s loss also marked the Caps’ second to the surging Flames in a span of three weeks.
Tarik’s three stars of the game:
1 - Johnny Gaudreau, Flames
Johnny Hockey capitalized on an apparent miscommunication in the first period to knot the score 1-1. With Brooks Orpik and John Carlson on the same side of the ice, Gaudreau raced into the Washington zone and snapped a shot past Braden Holtby’s glove. The goal was Gaudreau’s eighth in the past 10 games. He also notched a primary assist, giving him 19 points during this torrid stretch.
2 - Mike Smith, Flames
The 35-year-old netminder allowed a goal on the first shot he faced—a snipe from point blank range off the stick of Lars Eller just 62 seconds into the contest. After that Smith outstanding, particularly in the early moments of the third period as the Flames clung to a 2-1 lead. Smith turned away shots from Alex Chiasson (two), Alex Ovechkin, Chandler Stephenson, Dmitry Orlov and Tom Wilson in the opening 2:45 of the final frame to keep the Caps at bay.
3 - Jakub Vrana, Capitals
Vrana started the game on the third line and finished on the first line. In between, he recorded a beautiful primary assist, drew a penalty and notched two shots on net. The assist was Vrana’s first helper since Oct. 7, the Caps’ second game of the season. The 21-year-old was scratched two games ago in Colorado. Seems he heard Barry Trotz’s message loud and clear.
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