WASHINGTON -- Braden Holtby and Jacob Markstrom stole the spotlight on Saturday as both goalies allowed only one goal in regulation. Markstrom eventually came out on top, leading the Vancouver Canucks to the 2-1 victory over the Capitals in a seven-round shootout.
Here is how the Caps lost.
A two-man advantage
The Caps led 1-0 in the first and seemed to be playing well until two penalties derailed that. Chandler Stephenson was called for interference and just 62 seconds later Richard Panik joined him in the penalty box after tripping Elias Pettersson.
Coming into the game, the Caps were already without Carl Hagelin or Nic Dowd, both of whom have played heavy penalty kill minutes this season. Add Stephenson and Panik, also two big penalty killers for Washington, and the penalty kill was missing four of its main forwards and had 58 seconds of a two-man advantage to kill. Just 16 seconds later, Pettersson would take advantage and score on the penalty that he drew to tie the game at 1.
Myer's goal-line play
Vrana scored once in the first period and looked to add a second goal early in the second. He had a step on the defense with the puck, but was coming in on the right side and did not have enough room to try to turn inside. Instead, he just unleashed the wrister.
Jacob Markstrom thought he had the shot, but the puck trickled through him toward the goal line. The puck reached the goal line, but just before it could cross, Tyler Myers came in to knock the puck off and out of the net, saving the goal and keeping the score tied at 1.
Too many penalties
Simply put, the Caps took far too many penalties in this one. Vancouver had five power-play opportunities including one in overtime. The penalty kill did well to allow the Canucks only one goal, but given the players this team was missing, they needed to stay out of the box and they could not. Vancouver's lone goal was a power-play goal and the constant penalties did not allow Washington to get into an offensive flow or take the momentum.
Two denied overtime breakaways
The Caps spent two minutes of overtime killing off a Kuznetsov penalty. When they finally got back to even strength, Washington was chomping at the bit for some offense. Nick Jensen hit Alex Ovechkin in stride with the stretch pass to launch a breakaway. He got a lot of power behind his wrister, but Jacob Markstrom got his glove on it.
Late in overtime, T.J. Oshie stole the puck from J.T. Miller in the defensive zone putting himself in alone for the breakaway. Miller hustled back and denied Oshie before he could get the shot off. Even then, Oshie managed to recover and set up Ovechkin for another great chance and again, Markstrom was there.
Eller denied on review
This game ended up going to a shootout. No one scored through the first four rounds. Finally, Lars Eller beat Markstrom as he backhanded a shot off the post and up under the cross-bar...or so it seemed.
The next shooter was held as the goal was being reviewed. The replay from above showed that Eller's shot actually did not cross the goal line and instead hit off the cross-bar and out. Two rounds later, Bo Horvat scored on his attempt to give Vancouver the win.
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