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Caps Today, 5/6/18

May 6, 2018
Capitals rookie Jakub Vrana recorded three points (1g, 2a) in Game 5 and scored the game-winning goal with 4:38 remaining in regulation as the Capitals took a 3-2 lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins in their Second Round series. That marked the second time this series the Capitals have scored a game-winning goal in the final five minutes of regulation (Alex Ovechkin: Game 3, 1:07 remaining). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that marks the first time a team has recorded two game-winning goals in a single series in the final five minutes of regulation since the San Jose Sharks in Second Round against the Nashville Predators in 2016. Vrana's game-winning goal was the second game-winning goal he's recorded of the playoffs (Game 2 versus the Pittsburgh Penguins), and he became the first rookie in franchise history to record multiple game-winning goals in a single postseason. Additionally, Vrana became the fourth rookie in franchise history to record three points in a playoff game (Sergei Gonchar, 1995 Conference Quarterfinal versus the Pittsburgh Penguins; Richard Zednik, 1998 Conference Final versus the Buffalo Sabres; Evgeny Kuznetsov, 2015 First Round versus the New York Islanders).

Additionally, John Carlson scored his 16th career playoff goal to move into a tie with Kevin Hatcher for the most by a defenseman in franchise history. He has recorded 11 (3g, 8a) points in the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs, one shy of the franchise record for most points in a postseason by a defenseman.

The Capitals hold a 3-2 lead in a Stanley Cup Playoffs series against the Penguins for the fourth time in 11 meetings and first since the 1995 Conference Quarterfinals. Washington went on to win the series on one prior occasion, doing so in the 1994 Conference Quarterfinals (4-2 series win).

Must Read/See/Hear Material

Dump ‘n Chase: Caps Author Comeback in Third for 6-3 Win in Game 5

Washington Post:  Penguins-Capitals Game 5: Washington wins, 6-3, and Caps have two chances to clinch series / ‘The goalie is everything for us’: The Capitals’ Game 5 triumph started and ended with Braden Holtby / Penguins now in desperation mode — but they’ve succeeded in these spots before / Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom leaves in third period with an upper-body injury / Svrluga: As the Capitals enter uncharted territory, one thing is clear: They believe / D.C. Sports Bog: Caps fans go nuts on National Portrait Gallery steps, chanting ”One more game!’

Washington Times: Backstrom leaves Game 5 hurt, Carlson takes big hit late / A key adjustment for Capitals swings Game 5 / John Carlson scores day after wife gives birth to baby boy / Vrana’s heroics, Holtby’s saves deliver Capitals Game 5 win

NBC Sports Washington: Barry Trotz was not happy about a high hit delivered by Jake Guentzel to John Carlson / Backstrom leaves Game 5 with an upper-body injury / 3 reasons the Caps beat the Penguins in Game 5 / Capitals fans take over Portrait Gallery steps after Game 5 win / 3 Stars of Game 5: Capitals on the cusp of conference finals thanks to stellar third period / Caps-Pens rivalry extends to the Animal Kingdom Capitals rally past Penguins in Game 5, take lead in series / Capitals can get over hump against Penguins in Game 6 / 5 Keys: Penguins at Capitals, Game 5 / Power play proving to be big playoff weapon

AP: Capitals put Penguins on brink of elimination with Game 5 win

The Athletic: The Penguins and Capitals are each in unfamiliar territory / Maybe this year it can be different for this core group of Capitals

ESPN: Capitals rookie Jakub Vrana is Game 5 hero after being added to Alex Ovechkin's line

The Free Lance Star: Steve DeShazo: Source of Capitals' resilience a mystery, but team will take it

The Hockey News: The Rookie Effect In The 2018 NHL Playoffs (Capitals mentioned)

NBC Sports: The Buzzer: Capitals near curse’s end, Connor breaks out against Predators / Washington Capitals one win away from ending playoff curse

Omnisport: NHL playoffs 2018: Nicklas Backstrom leaves Game 5 with upper-body injury

Reuters: Caps rally past Penguins for 3-2 series edge

Sporting News: On Tom Wilson and becoming an NHL villain, from someone who would know / NHL playoffs 2018: Capitals' Jakub Vrana nets Game 5 winner, pushes Penguins to brink

Sports Capitol: Vrana tops things off with two assists and a goal / Third period turnabout puts Capitals a win away

Sports Illustrated: Stanley Cup Playoff Roundup: Capitals Edge Penguins; Jets Roll Past Predators

SportsNet: Jakub Vrana’s career night puts Capitals in control vs. Penguins

TSN: Statistically Speaking: Connor, Vrana come up big

Vavel: Capitals score four unanswered in the third, can wrap up the series in Pittsburgh

WNST: Eight Caps Thoughts Following A Huge Game Five Victory


TV/Audio Clips:

Washington Capitals: Capitals Postgame | May 5 / Caps 365 | May 5 / Barry Trotz Postgame | May 5 / All-Access | The Road To Game 5

106.7 The Fan: 5-5-18 Pollin & Loverro Hour 2: Brian McNally (0:05) / 5-5-18 Pollin & Loverro Hour 2: Callers on Capitals (14:50)

ESPN: In the Crease: Caps, Jets one win away from conference finals

NBC Sports: Trotz continues to do great job making adjustments

NBC Sports Washington: Capitals Extra Podcast: Game 5: Caps Grab Series Lead With A 6-3 Victory / Caps-Pens Game 5: The third period that changed everything / Hockey Jenks: Game 5 theatrics produce a party on F Street / Player's Cut: Top-line Vrana is huge in Game 5

NHL Network: NHL Tonight: Penguins vs Capitals

SportsNet: Without Holtby Game 5 Could've Got Out Of Capitals Hands / Capitals’ Kuznetsov Already Focused On Game 6 / Hrudey's Take: Holtby Extra Special In Nervous Situation

TSN: Ovechkin, Holtby critical in Capitals' Game 5 win / Pens will lean on their top line again in Game 5

WJLA-TV ABC 7: Live Hit from Capital One Arena (6 p.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (11 p.m.)

WRC-TV NBC 4: Live Hit from Capital One Arena (11 p.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (11 p.m.)

WUSA-TV CBS 9: Live Hit from Capital One Arena (11 p.m.) / Live Hit from Capital One Arena (11 p.m.)


Penguins Clips:

The Athletic: Kris Letang’s untimely misadventures cost the Penguins Game 5 in Washington / Penguins eager to generate headlines about hockey and nothing else / As Gophers run ends, Mike Guentzel basks in son Jake’s run with Penguins

DK Pittsburgh Sports: Kovacevic: Penguins wait on Murray’s best, while Capitals have Holtby as ‘backbone’ / Kessel, Brassard finally rise from ashes / Carlson, Backstrom injured, statuses unknown / TV: DK on WPXI’s ‘11 On The Ice’ postgame with Chase Williams / Final: Capitals 6, Penguins 3 / Despite struggles, Brassard says there’s no place he’d rather be / Penguins give a lick about not licking / Bradford’s three keys for Penguins vs. Capitals in Game 5 Penguins remain confident after loss to Capitals in Game 5

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Effort there, but facing elimination remains reality for Penguins / Ron Cook: A few mistakes cost the Penguins dearly / Instant analysis: Braden Holtby thwarts Penguins with heroic Game 5 performance / Derick Brassard isn't sweating his decrease in ice time / Capitals sticking with same top line for Game 5

Trib Live: Three things we learned from Penguins-Capitals Game 5 / Kevin Gorman: For Penguins, 'best game' falls flat / Capitals' Barry Trotz suggests Penguins' Jake Guentzel deserves suspension for hit / Kevin Gorman's Take 5 on Game 5: Five thoughts on Capitals 6, Penguins 3 / Penguins let 3rd-period lead slip away, fall to Capitals in Game 5 / Penguins notebook: Dominik Simon plays prominent offensive role / Penguins winger Jake Guentzel in elite company as playoff scorer / Penguins center Derick Brassard believes big game 'is going to happen soon' / Carl Hagelin's return provides potential boost to Penguins offense / Three things to watch for in Penguins-Capitals Game 5