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Capitals Takeaways

Takeaways: TVR, Kuznetsov Lead Capitals Past Blue Jackets

Evgeny Kuznetsov scored the OT winner, Trevor van Riemsdyk struck twice and Charlie Lindgren put on a show en route to a 4-3 OT win for the Washington Capitals over the Columbus Blue Jackets.



The Washington Capitals went into Tuesday's tilt with the Columbus Blue Jackets looking to finish the month on a high note and gain some momentum going into the All-Star break. They did just that.

Evgeny Kuznetsov scored the OT winner, Trevor van Riemsdyk struck twice and Charlie Lindgren put on a show between the pipes for a 4-3 overtime victory over the Blue Jackets. It gives Washington some more security in the standings going into the break.

Here are all the takeaways from the win:

Unlikely Heroes Provide Offense For Washington Capitals To Earn Point, Evgeny Kuznetsov Wins It

With the Capitals needing some offense against Joonas Korpisalo and Columbus, they saw a couple of unlikely heroes in Trevor van Riemsdyk and Garnet Hathaway get the team on the board.

Hathaway got things going with a tip in front with his eighth goal of the season. Lars Eller and Nick Jensen got the helpers, with Jensen's assist marking his 20th of the season as he continues to build on his career high.

Van Riemsdyk established a new career-high in goals and put Washington in front with two strikes.

One was a rocket of a point shot off a Nicolas Aube-Kubel feed in the first period that made it a 2-0 game.

His second came in the middle frame as he crashed the crease and buried a highlight-reel backhand pass from Kuznetsov behind the net.

The 31-year-old blueliner has now established a new career-high in goals with six on the season. His total had also tied Kuznetsov's total for this season, up until OT. Meanwhile, Erik Gustafsson got his team-leading 21st assist on TVR's goal.

But then, Evgeny Kuznetsov scored his seventh of the season on a nice OT winner. Gustafsson increased his assist total to 22.

Odd-Man Breaks, Missed Assignments Plague Washington Capitals Again, Charlie Lindgren Still Strong

It wasn't a great defensive showing for Washington, as odd-man rushes again plagued the team. Columbus got some high-quality chances and a couple of goals off odd-man rushes, and the backcheck was far from impressive. The coverage also wasn't great in front of Charlie Lindgren. It's a same storyline that has plagued Washington for quite a bit, and led to the Blue Jackets forcing OT.

Despite everything, Lindgren had a strong showing between the pipes. He came up with several big stops in his first start since Jan. 17. He stopped 31 of 34 shots (.912 save percentage).

Washington Capitals Shuffle Lines, Move Alex Ovechkin Down As No. 8 Sees Drop In Ice Time Before Break

Washington tweaked some of the lines throughout the game and elected to swap Alex Ovechkin and Garnet Hathaway. Ovechkin moved down to play with Aube-Kubel and Eller, while Hathaway got time with Dylan Strome and Conor Sheary.

The tweak appeared to provide a bit of pressure, as both lines generated some solid chances. Eller also had a strong showing with an assist and hit a post, while getting a couple of quality looks with No. 8. Hathaway, who struck early, also had some chemistry with Strome and Sheary.

Ovechkin logged just 16:30 minutes.

Ice Chips

– Gustafsson led the team with four shots on goal.

– Marcus Johansson now has points in five of his last six games.

– Stick taps to Samantha Pell on covering her final Capitals game for the Washington Post.

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