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Game Notes at Toronto, 4/19/17

April 18, 2017
Toronto 4, Washington 3 (OT)
April 17, 2017 * Air Canada Centre * Toronto, Ont.
Washington Goals: Nicklas Backstrom, Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov
Shots: WSH: 26, TOR: 28
Power Plays: WSH: 0-3; TOR: 1-3
Three Stars: 1. Bozak (TOR), 2. Matthews (TOR), 3. Backstrom (WSH)


Karl Alzner, missed one game (4/17)
Total Man-Games Lost: 1

The Capitals face the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre on Wednesday in Game 4 of the 2017 Eastern Conference quarterfinals. Toronto leads the series 2-1.    

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

Justin Time – Justin Williams earned an assist on Monday at Toronto, extending his point streak to three games this series (4/13-4/17: 2g, 2a). Williams’ point streak marks the ninth time in his career he has posted a point streak of three or more games in a playoff series. Dating back to last postseason, Williams has recorded a point in seven consecutive playoff games (5/2/16-4/17/17: 5g, 4a). The Cobourg, Ont., native has registered 11 points (5g, 6a) in 15 playoff games with Washington and recorded 89 points (35g, 54a) in 130 career playoff games.

Saint Nick – Nicklas Backstrom registered two points (1g, 1a) on Monday at Toronto, marking his 14th career postseason multi-point game. Since he entered the NHL in 2007-08, Backstrom ranks second on the team in postseason multi-point games (Alex Ovechkin: 22). In addition, Backstrom passed Dino Ciccarelli (21) for fourth place on the Capitals playoff goals list on Monday and passed Calle Johansson (42) for third place on the franchise playoff assist list. Backstrom has earned 65 points (22g, 43a) in 86 career playoff games and ranks third in Capitals postseason history in points and assists, fourth in goals and sixth in games played.

The Great Eight – Alex Ovechkin scored a goal in his second consecutive game on Monday at Toronto. Ovechkin scored a power-play goal on Saturday against Toronto, passing Peter Bondra (13) for first place on the Capitals playoff power-play goals list. The Moscow native ranks tied for first on the team in goals this postseason and has registered 84 points (43g, 41a) in 87 career playoff games. Ovechkin ranks first in franchise postseason history in goals, points, power-play goals (14) and power-play points (36). In addition, Ovechkin ranks tied for third among active NHL players (min. 20 games played) in career playoff goals per game (0.49) and tied for fifth in playoff points per game (0.97).

Holt-beast – Braden Holtby has posted four shutouts, a 1.93 goals-against average and a .936 save percentage in 49 career playoff games. He ranks first in NHL playoff history (min. 30 games played) in career save percentage and tied for sixth in career goals-against average. 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 49 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 (49). Holtby made 47 saves on Saturday against Toronto, tying his postseason career high (5/2/12 vs. NYR). Holtby’s 47 saves are tied for the fifth most in a game in franchise playoff history.

Osh With the Most – T.J. Oshie recorded two assists on Monday at Toronto, marking his third career postseason multi-assist game and sixth career multi-point game. Dating back to last postseason, Oshie has tallied a point in five consecutive games (5/7/16-4/17/17: 2g, 5a). In addition, Oshie has recorded a point in three straight games this postseason (4/13-4/17: 4a), tying his career-long point streak in a single postseason (4/16/16-4/20/16: 1g, 3a). The Everett, Wash., native has recorded 23 points (11g, 12a) in 45 career playoff games and 14 points (6g, 8a) in 15 postseason games with Washington.

Four Score – Washington has won three of its last four Game 4s when trailing 2-1 in a series (2012 ECQF, 2012 ECSF, 2015 ECQF) and is 20-19 all-time in Game 4 of a series. Braden Holtby has posted a 1.95 goals-against average and a .937 save percentage in seven career Game 4s.

Familiar Foes – Justin Williams has registered nine points (3g, 6a) in nine career playoff games against Toronto. Williams has earned four points (2g, 2a) in three games this series and 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 against Toronto in Game 7 of the series.

Quick Strike – According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Nicklas Backstrom’s goal at 2:43 of the first period on Monday at Toronto is the Capitals fastest goal to start a playoff game since Alex Ovechkin scored at 1:28 of the first period on May 9, 2012 against the NY Rangers.

Hitmen – The Capitals rank fourth in the NHL in hits this postseason (138) and recorded 55 hits in Game 2 against Toronto (4/15), tied for the third-most hits in a game this postseason. Brooks Orpik ranks first among active NHL players in career postseason hits (472) and Alex Ovechkin (374) ranks seventh.

Leading the Way – Washington’s roster has played in 1,070 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 (130) 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 tied for sixth among active NHL defensemen in career playoff games played (115) and won a Stanley Cup with the Penguins in 2009.

Working Overtime – This series marks the first time in Capitals playoff history that the first three games of a series have required overtime and the second time in franchise postseason history three consecutive games required overtime (4/20/93-4/24/93 vs. NYI).

O From D – John Carlson scored his seventh career postseason power-play goal in Game 2 against Toronto, passing Mike Green (6) for the most career power-play goals by a defensemen in franchise playoff history. Carlson has registered 32 points (12g, 20a) in 66 career playoff games and ranks tied for third with Calle Johansson (12) on the Capitals postseason goals by a defenseman list.

Power Surge – The Capitals scored two power-play goals in Game 2 against Toronto, marking the 34th time in franchise postseason history Washington has scored two or more power-play goals in a game. The Capitals have scored three power-play goals this series and ranks tied for third the NHL in power-play percentage (27.3%) this postseason.

Raking The Leafs – 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.

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).

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.