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Game Notes vs. Toronto, 4/15/17

April 14, 2017
Washington 3, Toronto 2 (OT)
April 13, 2017 * Verizon Center * Washington, D.C.
Washington Goals: Justin Williams (2), Tom Wilson
Shots: WSH: 44, TOR: 37   
Power Plays: WSH: 1-3; TOR: 0-1
Three Stars: 1. Wilson (WSH), 2. Williams (WSH), 3. Holtby (WSH)

April 11: Re-assigned Chandler Stephenson to Hershey (AHL)

Total Man-Games Lost: 0

The Capitals host the Toronto Maple Leafs at Verizon Center on Saturday in Game 2 of the 2017 Eastern Conference quarterfinals. Washington leads the series 1-0. 

April 15
7 p.m.
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
April 17
at Toronto
7 p.m.
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
April 19
at Toronto
7 p.m.
104.7 FM, Caps 24/7
April 21*
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
April 23*
at Toronto
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
April 25*
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
* If necessary

It Takes Two – Washington is 21-20 all-time in Game 2 of a series and have won Game 2 in six of their last eight playoff series. Braden Holtby is 4-2 in his career in Game 2 with one shutout, a 1.40 goals-against average and a .957 save percentage. Alex Ovechkin has earned 15 points (9g, 6a) in 13 career Game 2s, including a playoff career high four points (1g, 3a) against Montreal on April 17, 2010 in Game 2 of the 2010 Eastern Conference quarterfinals. Nicklas Backstrom has tallied 14 points (6g, 8a) in 13 career Game 2s, including a playoff career high four points (3g, 1a) against Montreal on April 17, 2010 in Game 2 of the 2010 Eastern Conference quarterfinals.

Justin Time – Justin Williams scored two goals in Game 1 against Toronto, marking his fourth career postseason multi-goal game and his first since April 28, 2014 vs. San Jose (2g, 1a). Since 2012-13, Williams ranks tied for sixth in the NHL in postseason multi-goal games. In addition, Thursday marked his 18th career postseason multi-point game. Williams has earned nine points (5g, 4a) in 13 playoff games with Washington and 87 points (35g, 52a) in 128 career playoff games. Dating back to last season, Williams has earned a point in five straight playoff games (5/2/16-4/13/17: 5g, 2a).

Big Willie Style – Tom Wilson scored the game-winning goal in overtime on Thursday against Toronto, marking his first career NHL playoff goal. Wilson is the first player in franchise history to score his first career postseason goal in overtime. The Toronto native has earned three points (1g, 2a) in 29 career NHL playoff games.

Rising to the Occasion – Braden Holtby has posted four shutouts, a 1.87 goals-against average and a .938 save percentage in 47 career playoff games. He ranks first in NHL playoff history (min. 30 games played) in career save percentage and fourth in career goals-against average, trailing Lorne Chabot (1.54), Dave Kerr (1.74) and Patrick Lalime (1.77). In addition, Holtby ranks first among active NHL goaltenders (min. 20 games played) in career playoff goals-against average and save percentage. Holtby has allowed two goals or fewer in 32 of his 47 career playoff games and Washington has posted a 21-11 record in those games. He ranks first in franchise history in postseason wins (23) and games played (47).

Comeback Caps – The Capitals overcame a 2-0 first-period defecit on Thursday to defeat the Maple Leafs 3-2 (OT) in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals. Thursday marked the first time the Capitals have overcome a two-goal deficit to win a playoff game since April 17, 2015 against the Islanders, when Washington trailed 2-0 and 3-1 in the game and came back to win 4-3.

Familiar Foes – Justin Williams has registered seven points (3g, 4a) in seven career playoff games against Toronto. Williams recorded five points (1g, 4a) in six games against the Maple Leafs in the 2003 Eastern Conference quarterfinals, including three points (1g, 2a) and the game-winning goal in Philadelphia’s 6-1 victory ahainst Toronto in Game 7 of the series.

The Great Eight – Alex Ovechkin has registered 82 points (41g, 41a) in 85 career playoff games and ranks first in franchise history in playoff points and goals, ranks tied for first in power-play goals (13) and tied for fifth in assists. In addition, Ovechkin ranks tied for fourth among active NHL players (min. 20 games played) in career playoff goals per game (0.49) and playoff points per game (0.98). In 18 career games when his team has faced elimination, Ovechkin has registered 19 points (9g, 10a).

Saint Nick – Nicklas Backstrom has earned 62 points (20g, 42a) in 84 career playoff games and ranks third in franchise postseason history in points, tied for third in assists and fifth in goals. Backstrom ranked second in the NHL in assists (63) and multi-assist games (15) during the 2016-17 season and ranked fourth in points (86). In addition, he led the NHL in points since Jan. 1 (56). Since 2007-08, Backstrom ranks third in the NHL in assists (540) and ranks second among active NHL players (min. 200 GP) in career assists per game (0.74).

Leading the Way – Washington’s roster has played in 1,032 career playoff games combined. Two Capitals have played more than 100 career playoff games and each has won a Stanley Cup. Justin Williams has won three Stanley Cups (Carolina: 2006, Los Angeles: 2012, 2014) and won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player in the playoffs in 2014. Williams ranks 10th among active NHL players in career playoff games played (128) and has never lost a Game 7 (7-0). In addition, Williams has earned an NHL record 14 points in seven career Game 7s and his seven Game 7 goals are tied for the NHL record (Glenn Anderson). Brooks Orpik ranks seventh among active NHL defensemen in career playoff games played (113) and won a Stanley Cup with the Penguins in 2009.

Hitmen – Washington recorded 52 hits in Game 1 against Toronto on Thursday, marking the second-most hits by a team in a game this postseason (Montreal, 4/12: 53). Brooks Orpik ranks first among active NHL players in career postseason hits (463) and Alex Ovechkin (363) ranks seventh.

Shots Fired – Kevin Shattenkirk earned an assist and led all skaters in shots (9) on Thursday against Toronto in his Capitals postseason debut. Shattenkirk’s nine shots in Game 1 marked the most shots by a Capitals player in the postseason since Alex Ovechkin recorded nine shots on May 10, 2013 against the NY Rangers.

Power Surge – Justin Williams scored a power-play goal in Game 1 against Toronto, marking his sixth career postseason power-play goal and his first since May 16, 2014 at Anaheim. In addition, the Capitals have won 15 of their last 19 postseason games when they score a power-play goal (4/19/12-4/13/17: 15-4).

Raking The Leafs – Including playoffs and the regular season, the Capitals have won eight of their last nine games against the Maple Leafs and have won eight consecutive games against Toronto at Verizon Center. Alex Ovechkin has recorded 60 points (33g, 27a) in 42 career regular-season games against the Maple Leafs, marking the fifth-most points he has earned against an NHL team in his career. Nicklas Backstrom has registered 32 points (6g, 26a) in 33 career regular-season games against the Maple Leafs and Braden Holtby has posted a 6-2-1 record against Toronto with one shutout, a 2.17 goals-against average and a .931 save percentage.

Toppling Toronto – This postseason marks the first time the Capitals and Maple Leafs have met in the playoffs. Washington and Toronto met three times during the 2016-17 regular season, with the Capitals posting a 2-1-0 record. Justin Williams (1g, 3a) and Evgeny Kuznetsov (1g, 3a) led the Capitals with four points in three games against the Maple Leafs and Nicklas Backstrom (1g, 2a), Marcus Johansson (1g, 2a), Alex Ovechkin (1g, 2a) and Kevin Shattenkirk (1g, 2a) each recorded three points in three games against Toronto in 2016-17.

All The Presidents’ Men – The Capitals won the Presidents’ Trophy this season for the third time in franchise history (2009-10, 2015-16) and the second consecutive season. This marks the seventh time in NHL history a team has won the Presidents’ Trophy in consecutive seasons. In addition, the Capitals are the third team in League history to win the Presidents’ Trophy three or more times (Detroit: 6, NY Rangers: 3). The Presidents’ Trophy has been presented by the NHL Board of Governors since the 1985-86 season.

Holt-beast – Braden Holtby led the NHL in shutouts (9) this season, ranked tied for first in wins (42), second in goals-against average (2.07) and fourth in save percentage (.925). He is one of two goaltenders to rank in the top-five in the NHL in wins, shutouts, goals-against average and save percentage this season (Sergei Bobrovsky). He allowed two goals or fewer in 42 of his 63 games this season and posted a 33-3-6 record in those games. Since 2012-13, Holtby leads the NHL in wins (177) and shutouts (29).

In Barry We Trust – Since Barry Trotz became Washington head coach in 2014-15, the Capitals lead the NHL in wins (156), points (339), goals per game (3.03), goals against per game (2.30) and power-play percentage (23.4) and rank fourth in penalty kill percentage (83.4).

Home Sweet Home – Washington led the NHL with a 32-7-2 record at home this season, marking the franchise record for home wins in a season. Braden Holtby earned a franchise-record 27 wins at home in 2016-17 and led the NHL in goals-against average (1.69), wins and shutouts (8) at home and ranked second in save percentage (.934). In addition, Nicklas Backstrom ranked tied for second in the NHL with 49 points (14g, 35a) in 41 home games this season.

Sustained Success – The Capitals posted a 55-19-8 record this season, marking the second-most wins and third-most points (118) in a season in franchise history. In addition, Washington won 53 games in regulation and overtime (ROW), setting a new franchise record (previous: 2015-16: 52). The Capitals have recorded 55 wins in two straight seasons (2015-16: 56, 2016-17: 55), joining the Montreal Canadiens (1975-78) as the only teams in NHL history to win 55 or more games in consecutive seasons. Washington also earned 238 points in the last two seasons, marking the most points in two straight seasons since Montreal recorded 244 points from 1977-79.

Winning Jennings – The Capitals captured the William M. Jennings Trophy in 2016-17, an annual award given to the goalkeeper(s) with the fewest goals scored against it. This season marked the fewest goals Washington has allowed in an 82-game season in franchise history (182) and the second time the Capitals have won the Jennings Trophy. Al Jensen and Pat Riggin combined to win the award for Washington in 1983-84.

Caps Connections – Tom Wilson and Daniel Winnik are from Toronto. Winnik earned 39 points (11g, 28a) in 114 games with the Maple Leafs from 2014-16.

The 2017 Washington Capitals Playoff Guide is available for download here.