Capitals lose momentum and the game in overtime to Kraken 2-3
DC’s hockey team paid a visit to Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle, Washington on the third game of their six game road trip. Their opponent this night was the Seattle Kraken, winners of their last six games. While the Capitals began with a flourish, they finished with a blundering thud as they blew a two goal lead. The Kraken were clearly the better team in the last twenty plus minutes. The Capitals would eventually fall after a bewilderingly brief overtime period, coming away with only one standings point.
The game began well enough for the Capitals as they would manage the first goal after trading chances with the Kraken. Martin Fehervary recovered the puck after a shot from Alex Ovechkin was blocked in the high slot area. He then blasted home a slap shot from the top of the left faceoff circle at 7:36, putting the Caps in the lead.
The Capitals would increase their lead in the second period on a power play goal by Conor Sheary. Ovechkin flung a pass to Marcus Johansson who spotted Sheary in the low slot for the wrist shot goal at 14:04 of the second period. The goal is his eighth of the season. The Kraken’s Jaden Schwartz would answer on a power play at 13:28 after tipping in a rebound.
The game was unusual in that only 48 shots reached the net from both teams. The offensive flow could be measured in chances to score however as opposed to actual shots on goal. Both goalies would be called upon to make stops on extremely high-danger chances, the most spectacular coming from former Capital Philip Grubauer. In the second period’s final minute, he stopped Evgeny Kuznetsov’s attempt at point-blank range.
In the third period, the Capitals lost their edge in both physical play and puck movement, not nearly winning as many battles as they had done in the first two-thirds of the game. Time and again they failed to make the zone clearing plays needed to keep their opponents at bay. Consequently, they spent nearly the entire period defending and it finally caught up to them when Yanni Gourde potted a backhander at 17:33 to tie the game.
The overtime began with a botched faceoff when Lars Eller awkwardly spun the puck back to John Carlson who was immediately swarmed by both Kraken forwards. Several seconds later, Matt Beniers emerged from the scrum and broke in alone on Darcy Kuemper to put away the goal to end the game. The overtime period lasted all of seven seconds.
NOTES—Alex Ovechkin finished with two assists for the game giving him his fifth multi-point effort in his last seven games. Both Kuemper and TJ Oshie would receive penalties during the game, the latter for fighting Yanni Gourde. The Capitals’ next game is in Calgary at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Saturday, Dec. 3rd. The start time is 10 PM ET.