Game 2: Caps 3, Bruins 4 (OT) Caps Fail to Contain Bruins Top Lines Late
The Washington Capitals lost to the Boston Bruins 4-3 in OT for Game 2 of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Here are the stats from the game:
Shots on Goal:
WSH – 48
BOS – 39
Shots on Goal (5v5):
WSH – 36
BOS – 28
Corsi For %
WSH – 41.45%
BOS – 58.55%
WSH – 1/4
BOS – 0/2
WSH – 36
BOS – 30
WSH – 19
BOS – 15
Scoring Chances For:
WSH – 34
BOS – 41
Scoring Chances For (5v5):
WSH – 25
BOS – 31
High Danger Chances For:
WSH – 14
BOS – 21
High Danger Chances For: (5v5):
WSH – 7
BOS – 17
WSH – 37% (24/65)
BOS – 63% (41/65)
Offensive Zone Faceoff%
WSH – 33% (7/21)
BOS – 67% (16/24)
SV% .917 (Saved 44 of 48 shots faced)
SV% .923 (Saved 36 of 39 shots faced)
Instead of doing my takeaways from the game, I am going to revisit the story-lines to watch prior to game two
Here Were My Three Story-lines to watch prior to Game Two:
1. Will Craig Anderson Keep This Up? The Answer…Yes and No. Craig Anderson allowed only one goal in game one and had a.955 SV%. Last night Craig Anderson got off to a rocky start. He made a terrible read on Charlie Coyle and overcommitted to a possible shot. Coyle wrapped around the net and passed the puck out front to DeBrusk who had a tap-in. Some Bruins fans will say this was an incredible fake by Coyle, I call this incredibly bad goaltending. The second goal Anderson allowed was off one of the many failed clears by the Caps defense. Anderson had a clear line of sight on the shot and Bergeron just roofed it over his glove. I heard some commentators saying the Bruins have been targeting Anderson’s glove side. I don’t know if there is legitimately any truth to that. With no one screening Anderson, I also felt like this was a shot he has to save. To Bergeron’s credit, it was a beautiful shot. Anderson allowed two goals on the Bruins first five shots of the game. This was the difference early in the game. Rask played out of his mind for the most part, Anderson did not. On the positive side of things for Anderson, after giving up that 2nd goal he was pretty lights out the rest of the game. He stopped the next 30 shots he faced before giving up that goal to Taylor Hall. Anderson stopped 9 of 11 high danger chances. Rask stopped 6 for 6 high danger chances. If I had to give Anderson a grade for game two, it would be a “B”.
2. Will the Bruins Top Two Lines finally convert on all those high danger chances?The Answer – YES. Yes yes and yes they certainly took advantage. For the second straight game, the Bruins dominated the high danger chance statistics. Last game the top two lines contributed to 10 of the 11 high danger chances. For game two, the Bruins had 21 high danger chances. 13 of chances came from the second line of Hall (5), Krejci (2), and Smith (6). The top line of Marchand-Bergeron-Pastrnak had four total. That means 17 of the 21 high danger chances (80%) came from the top two lines and they converted two high danger goals. I think it is fair to say the Bruins hold a very strong statistical advantage in terms of the quality of chances they are getting through two games. Through two playoff games, the Bruins have 32 high danger chances compared to the Capitals 19. 27 of the Bruins high danger chances have come from the top two lines. Let’s repeat that, the Bruins top two lines have 8 more high danger chances than the entire caps team combined. Sad.
3. Caps PP vs the Bruins PK and Vice Versa – During the regular season, the Caps in large part had their way with the Boston Bruins top ranked PK. Last night, the Caps went 1 for 4 and looked pretty respectable all game. It wasn’t perfect at times but with so many weapons, the Capitals can score from anywhere on the PP. If it wasn’t for some terrible officiating, the Capitals would have had two or three extra power plays last night. It felt like every time there was a scrum and the Bruins committed a penalty, the ref was throwing the Caps player (who did nothing i.e Anthony Mantha) in the box as well. The boo birds were certainly filling the arena last night. The Bruins PP looked better than the Caps even though they didn’t score. The Bruins had 7 high danger chances on just two power plays and the Capitals had just one high danger chance on four power plays. Advantage Boston here.
The series is tied 1-1 and I think that is exactly the way it should be. The Capitals did let one slip away last night but on the Boston side of things, Boston earned that comeback win. This has been a fun physical series so far and I can’t wait to watch game three!
Here Are My Three Storylines to watch for Game Three:
1. Who Will Start in Net for Washington?
2. Who Will Fill in For Center Depth if Eller Misses Game Three? Kuznetsov or Connor McMichael?
3. Can the Capitals Slow Down the Bruins Top Two Lines?
Thanks for reading and GO CAPS!