As customary in Winnipeg with their new Jets, the star player of the opposing team is treated to a chorus of 'boooos'. And so it was for Alexander Ovechkin last night. Ovechkin answered the Winnipeg crowd with just 1:14 to play in the game to lift the Washington Capitals to a 1-0 shutout win over the Jets.
Looking at the score, you would think the game was pretty dull and boring. However, Winnipeg fans were treated to some nifty goal tending by the Caps Michal Neuvirth and home town goalie Ondrej Pavalec. Both net minders displayed some terrific goal tending and made some pretty miraculous saves to preserve shutouts deep into the third period. Both net minders fended off several offensive breakouts. If you are a goal tending fan, this was your game!
As for the Capitals, the game winning tally was created by a nifty drop off pass from Marcus Johansson to Ovechkin and Ovechkin buried it past Pavalec for the game's only marker. It was Ovechkin's 10th goal of the season and assisted by Johansson and Nicklas Backstrom.
Besides the big two points, this was one of the more fundamentally sound defensive performances the Caps have played this season and under new head coach Dale Hunter. The Caps did a heckuva job shutting down the center of the ice. Additionally, up to the final few seconds of the game, the Caps also made it extremely difficult for the Jets to circulate the puck past the center line.
Kudos and hats off to a fine defensive performance by Dennis Wideman. Wideman played a great hockey game from start to finish and made a brilliant save from an open net on a Jets breakaway to preserve the shutout.
In case you missed the game winner, here it is
Michal Neuvirth was the start of the game, recording his fifth career shutout and his first since April 15, 2011. The win moves Neuvirth to 4-5 on the season and lowered his high GAA down to 3.38 and save percentage up to .885.