Final Score: Washington Capitals (41-12-7) defeat the Edmonton Oilers (33-21-8) 2-1 at Verizon Center on Friday night.
How It Happened: The Capitals were unable to set the NHL record for most consecutive home games with at least five goals scored, but they did just enough to best Oilers goalie Cam Talbot, who stood on his head for much of the game. The Capitals were at their strongest when getting out on the rush, which in turn didn't allow the Oilers' top line of Leon Draisaitl, Patrick Maroon and phenom Connor McDavid to get settled looks on offense.
What It Means: The home victory means the Capitals' home win streak extends to 13 games, dating back to a Dec. 29 shootout loss to the Devils.The 13-game win streak ties a franchise history. After dropping back-to-back games last week, the Capitals are now streaking again.
Capitals Goal: Dmitry Orlov ran out of real estate in the left corner, which forced him to shovel a pass backwards to Tom Wilson. The third-liner stepped in with space availableand unleashed a wrister past Cam Talbot to give the Caps a 1-0 lead 12:22 of the first period.
Oilers Goal: Early in the second period, the Capitals attempted to clear the puck out of their end.A miscommunication between Andre Kuznetsov and Justiun Williams resulted in an easy interception from Andrej Sekara who then left it for Leon Draisaitl, who put it passt Braden Holtby for the equalizer at 0:35 of the second period.
Capitals Goal: Justin Williams tallied his 19th goal of the season thanks to a brilliant slapshot from the right wing early in the third period. The Capitals had a sustained offensive possesion, with Karl Alzner finding Williams trailing behind. He left it for the savy veteran, who burried past Talbot for the 2-1 lead.
Three Stars of the Game:
3 - Branden Holtby: Holtbeast didn't pitch a shutout, but 30 saves on 31 shots isn't too shabby. For every dazzling save Cam Talbot made, Holtby answered, especially during a rocky second period where the Capitals had issues controlling the puck on offense. Holtby finished strong as well, turning back numerous shots with the Oilers going 6-on-5 for the final 120 seconds.
2 - Evgeny Kuznetzov: While he didn't register a point against the Oilers, Kuznetsov was rock solid on defense and thwarted all of McDavid's output.He was physical on offense and defense and set up his linemates well. Kuznetsov was no slouch on offense, putting three shots on set.
1 - Justin Williams: The elder statesman led all players with four shots on goal, and burried the game-winner in the third period. Williams now hasa 19 goals on the season, and has provided the Caps' with countless late-game pick-me-ups.
Looking Ahead: The Capitals have a quick turnaround as they head to Nashville to take on Filip Forsberg and the Nashville Predators.