The Washington Captials looked as if they would easily sail to a third straight loss early. The Caps defense was having a difficult time defending against Anaheim veterans Saku Koivu and Teemu Selanne.
Koivu and Selanne scored in the first period to take a 2-0 lead into the first intermission, despite the Caps out shooting the Ducks 9-6. It was also one of those games where no matter what shots were put on net by the Capitals, the pads of Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller seem to have stick’em on them.
Selanne picked up his second marker of the night at the 9:05 mark of the second period to put the Ducks up 3-0, stunning and deflating the Verizon Center. That only last four minutes. Joe Ward provided fuel for a resurgent Sea of Red crowd, notching his 3rd goal of the season and finally getting a shot from the side to slip through Hiller’s pads, to cut the lead to two, at 3-1. The marker was assisted by Brooks Laich and Jason Chimera. Three minutes later, after Hiller came out of the net and failed to clear the puck, Liach missed an opportunity, but it took Hiller off balance, as Laich delivered a beauty cross pass to Dennis Wideman, who landed a nasty slap shot to pull the Capitals to within 1, at 3-2. Laich and Ward added the assists, another stellar performance by the Ward, Laich, and Chimera line, easily the most consistent line this season for coach Bruce Boudreau. The Caps out shot the Ducks 12-5 in the second period.
Corey Perry delivered a blow to the Caps right after the 9 minute mark of the final period to put the Ducks up 4-2, an insurance goals for the Duck, or so they thought. The 4-2 lead lasted just over two minutes when Troy Brouwer buried home a nasty wrister straight in front of Hiller to pull the Caps back to within 1, at 4-3. John Erskine, in his season debut, added an assist along with Wideman. Front there on, the story was about Nicklas Backstrom. With the Caps trailing 4-3 late in the third period, Backstrom provided the equalizer at the 15:36 mark, delivering the puck to the right of Hiller on a wide open net to knot the game at 4-4. Chimera and Laich added assists, a three assist night for Laich.
Backstrom landed the game winner, taking a rebound from a Jeff Schultz shot, right in front of Hiller, ending a rough period and a half for Hiller in DC. Credit the assists on the game winner to Alex Ovechkin and Schultz
Tomas Vokoun earned his seventh consecutive win, stopping only 11 of 15 shots on net. Good enough for the win. A few of the goals though could be credited to awful defensive turn overs.
Nicklas Backstrom, 2 goals
Jason Chimera, 2 assists
Brooks Laich, 3 assists
Joel Ward, 1 goal, 1 assist
Dennis Wideman, 1 goal, 1 assist
DCPSR Player of the Game: When you score the equalizer and the game winner, you get the nod, Nicklas Backstrom.
Streaks Intact (more than 2 games):
Tomas Vokoun has won SEVEN straight games