Sunday, April 6, 2008

Game #82 Recap - Capitals 3 Panthers 1

The stage had been set, all things had fallen into place, and the Capitals delivered. With a 3-1 victory over the Florida Panthers the Capitals claim the Southeast Division Championship and spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The team looked tight in the beginning but at the 7:19 mark of the first period, an aggressive forecheck by Brooks Laich got the puck to Tomas Fleischmann who went straight to the net a beat the goalie for a 1-0 lead. In the second period Florida tied the game on a reviewed power play goal that just trickled over the goal line. Later in the period Alexander Semin hit Sergei Fedorov with a perfect cross ice pass. Fedorov skated into the offensive zone a fired a slap shot by the goalie to regain the lead. In the third period, with the Caps on the power play, Niclas Backstrom passed the puck to Semin in the high slot. Semin waited and blasted the puck into the net for a 3-1 lead. The Caps held the Panthers to 5 shot in the third period and Caps goaltender Cristobal Huet won his 9th consecutive game.

Of Note:
  • Sergei Fedorov's game-winning goal was his first of the season and the 91st of his career.
  • Nicklas Backstrom had 1 assist for 55 on the year and broke the Capitals single season rookie assist record. Alex Ovechkin had set the record in 2005-06 with 54 assists.
  • Ovechkin was held off the scoreboard but had 5 shots on goal, 5 shots blocked, and 3 missed shots. With the 3 missed shots he passes Peter Bondra for most missed shots recored in club history (the stat has only been recored from 1997-98 to 2001-02 and then from 2005-06 to present). On the year Ovechkin had 446 shots on goal. That ranks 2nd most in NHL history.
  • The Capitals out shot Florida 38-26 and out drew them in face-offs 29-27.
  • Cristobal Huet was 11-2-0 for the Caps with a 1.63 GAA and a .936 save percentage.
  • Head Coach Bruce Boudreau went 37-17-7 since taking over on Thanksgiving when he took over the team.
  • The Capitals will face either the Philadelphia Flyers or the Ottawa Senators in the first round of the playoffs.
Official Recap
Game Summary
Super Stats

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