After three shortened seasons in Washington, defenseman Jack Hillen was traded to...
Ovechkin Nets 30th of Season
Brouwer scored two goals, but Ovi also had two and people remember that more. (File photo)
With the Caps holding on to first place in the Southeast Division and Nick Backstrom communicating with the ghost of Lord Stanley via a GEICO commercial, it didn’t take an apparition to remind the Caps, and their fans, that they needed to beat the Northeast Division leader Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.
Coming off of a sloppy 3-1 loss against the Senators, with Mathieu Perreault and Mike Ribeiro itching to show off for their hometown crowd, and Alex Ovechkin racing for his third Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy, there was a lot at stake. But the Great 8 scored first, bringing his impressive league-leading goal count to 29—two ahead of the Lightning’s Steven Stamkos. One minute and eight seconds later, the Canadiens’ goalie, Carey Price, looked like he had sprung a leak as Troy Brouwer added to the Caps’ lead.
Brouwer’s added another at the beginning of the second period to put the Caps ahead, 3-0. It was his second goal of the game and 19th of the season. Backstrom notched another a few minutes later with a power play goal (perhaps an extra “insurance” goal inspired by Lord Stanley!).
The Caps continued to look crisp and energized during the third period, with Braden Holtby giving a stellar performance. The Caps were playing as a team and everything was working. Then, Ovechkin scored his 30th goal of the season, rubbing salt in the Canadiens’ wound. But Holtby’s shutout wasn’t meant to be. Max Pacioretty put the Canadiens on the score sheet with a goal at 14:51.
The final score was 5-1, and a step closer to the playoffs for the Caps. They were playing on all cylinders, even Joe B. and Locker gave them an A+.
The Caps have a very important division game next Tuesday night at home against the Winnipeg Jets. Maybe in his next commercial Backstrom could ask Lord Stanley for a sip from his precious cup. It’s time.