It wasn’t the prettiest game by any means for the Washington Capitals — in fact, it was a brutal roller coaster at times. However, the Capitals’ stars took matters into their own hands to lead them to a 7-5 victory. They are 4-0-2 to start the year and are on a six-game point streak.
Here are all the takeaways and everything to know from the action.
T.J. Oshie Stuns With Hat Trick For Capitals
Washington was trailing 1-0 early in the first, but four unanswered goals, including two from T.J. Oshie, helped the team to a 4-1 lead to close out the opening frame. Oshie looked great alongside Connor McMichael, who picked up his first two NHL points on a pair of helpers.
Later in the third, Oshie battled hard for the puck behind the net and managed a wrap-around that went off Nick Holden and in to give the Capitals a two-goal advantage in the final frame.
Throw em 🎩 pic.twitter.com/e2laZjy64g
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) October 26, 2021
The 34-year-old now has five career hat tricks and last had a three-goal outing on May 5 against the New York Rangers.
An Ugly Second Costs The Capitals
The second period told a completely different story. After Washington took a dominating 4-1 lead, Ottawa came roaring back in the second when the Capitals took their foot off the gas a bit. A lack of discipline for Washington in the second led to a couple of power-play chances, one that resulted in a goal as Ottawa net three unanswered to tie the game at four.
However, Alex Ovechkin stepped up yet again for the Capitals, blocking a shot before going off to the races and scoring on a silky deke that put Washington in front yet again.
The Senators ultimately outshot the Capitals in the second, 16-6.
Ovechkin Stays Red-Hot For Capitals
Right now, Ovechkin is off to the best start of his career and completely dominated yet again to push the Capitals to victory. After helping them regain the lead in the second with a highlight-reel red light, the Russian struck again in the third to restore a two-goal lead for the Capitals after Ottawa pulled within one thanks to Drake Batherson’s hat trick.
The man is on a mission pic.twitter.com/319p1x6lgs
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) October 26, 2021
Ovechkin’s seven goals through six games lead the NHL. He also has 12 points now on the season after his fifth multi-point outing of 2021-22, putting him in second in points behind Connor McDavid (13). He’s now at 737 career goals and is five away from passing Brett Hull for fourth on the NHL all-time goals list.
READ MORE ON WHN: At 36, Ovechkin Off To Best Start Of His Career
Connor McMichael Finally Finds The Scoresheet
McMichael’s been waiting for his first NHL point and generated several chances last game, while also leading the team in shots (5) against the Calgary Flames. His hard work finally paid off — and in beautiful fashion — against the Sens.
The 20-year-old notched a secondary assist on Oshie’s second goal of the night, giving him his first NHL point. On Oshie’s hat trick tally, he got the primary assist for his first career NHL multi-point game.
Beyond stats, he had an impressive overall performance. He was skating hard, battling for pucks and making the most of his time on the top-6. He finished with 14:01 minutes. McMichael still needs to improve in the face-off dot, but that will come with practice.
Defense Chips In For Capitals
Without help from the blue line, Washington wouldn’t have won this game. All but one defenseman (Justin Schultz) recorded a point in the win, and two (Nick Jensen and John Carlson), lit the lamp for the Capitals.
THE STICKS ARE HOT! pic.twitter.com/VI5hlL1QFV
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) October 25, 2021
Martin Fehervary picked up an assist for his second point in two games after dishing his first NHL goal on Saturday against Calgary. Meanwhile, Trevor van Riemsdyk registered a helper, too, and now has four points in six games. His four assists lead the team.
Washington’s blueliners now have six of Washington’s 26 goals on the season (23.1 percent).
Sammi’s Ice Chips
- Tom Wilson now leads the Capitals with seven helpers, which also ties him for the NHL lead. He’s also riding a five-game point streak.
- Mantha picked up an assist and has points in three of his last four and four points in six games overall.
- Despite surrendering five goals, Samsonov wasn’t too shabby in net. He stopped 32 of 37 shots (.865) and came up with some pretty big saves. He’s now 2-0-1 to start the year with a 3.22 GAA and .885 save percentage.
- I liked the Carl Hagelin-Lars Eller-Garnet Hathaway line. Thought they did a solid job grinding, yet Nic Dowd’s absence was still noticeable, especially in the face-off circle.
- It was a quiet night for Hendrix Lapierre stat-wise, but there were a lot of things he did well. His screen in front was vital for Jensen’s strike, and he also backchecked well and didn’t shy away from battles. He’s continuing to develop and get more comfortable, and it’s easy to see in his game. He finished with one shot, one hit and won 33 percent of his draws in 7:46 minutes on the ice.
- Jensen already tied his season total from last year in goals (2).
- Ovechkin led the team with six shots, Garnet Hathaway led with seven hits and Fehervary led the way with three blocks.