How Good was that First Line of Backstrom, Ovechkin and Wilson?

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Posted December 6, 2017

“Please Ovi, let me score tonight. PLEASE!!!” (Caps Outsider)

The All-Star first line of Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and T.J. Oshie Tom Wilson was bound to break out sooner or later, piling up the points like it was 2009-2010 again. With two of them slumping in the goal-scoring department, it didn’t take long for both Backstrom (snapping a 21 million game-goalless drought) and Wilson to find the net. And seconds after I sort of predicted Ovechkin would score, he did. A first-line hat trick in the first period.

Filling in for Oshie on the power play, Brett Connolly joined in on the fun, scoring on an Ovechkin rebound. And finally, the second line got in on the action, as Evgeny Kuznetsov whistled one past not Corey Crawford to put the Caps up 5-1.

As for Ovi, it was the second time this season he’s had a three-assist game, and the 13th time of his (regular season) career. What’s this, Ovi getting assists? It’s like he’s 19 again. Wilson then capped off his career night with an empty-net goal, giving him 4 points, and also became the first player in Caps history to record two consecutive three-point games against Chicago.

Braden Holtby, meanwhile, made 37 of 39 saves, but according to coach Barry Trotz, most of the chances the Blackhawks got weren’t so great, and the Caps enjoyed a 6-2 win.

Matt Niskanen, who turned 31, had an assist and was +4. I asked him his record on his birthday or if he’s scored on his birthday and said he didn’t know and doesn’t want to remember. So, that birthday Nisky totally isn’t a thing he cares about.

The real stars of the game, however, were these guys:

Referees Attend Caps/Blackhawks Game