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Game 3: Caps 2, Bruins 3 (2OT) - Caps Fade Late, Can't Keep Up with Bruins

May 20, 2021, 3:42 PM ET [12 Comments]
Brian Sickles
Washington Capitals Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Hello Hockeybuzz Fam,

Sorry about the delays in my posts. I am in the middle of packing to move across the country back to Maryland in just two days. In addition, I am transitioning to a new job/role with my company. More Work. Not to mention I am also in the middle of planning a wedding. Holy shirt n pants, am I right? Time has been tight lately to say the least. I will do my best to get posts live when I can! It’s the playoffs baby!

The Washington Capitals lost 3-2 to the Boston in 2OT for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Bruins now hold a 2-1 series lead. It was a fantastic game for both teams. For the Capitals, it is back to back games that they have turned the puck over in their own zone and it directly led to the OT GWG. Last night’s Justin Schultz and Ilya Samsonov's miscommunication/lack of hustle was so bad…like really bad. It makes me sick to my stomach watching such lazy effort in a playoff game. Shame! Shame! Shame!

All bias and triggered-ness aside, the Bruins noticeably owned the Caps in both overtimes. The Bruins deserved the win. Yes, the Caps shot themselves in the foot (again), but the Bruins earned this one in extra time. Between the two OT periods, the Bruins had 19 scoring chances compared to the Capitals 4. High danger chances in OT were 6-1 in favor of the Bruins. In addition, the average Corsi For % in OT was 58.78% in favor of the Bruins.

Here are the stats from the game:

Shots on Goal:

WSH – 37

BOS – 43


Shots on Goal (5v5):

WSH – 29

BOS – 30


Corsi For %
WSH – 45.1%
BOS – 54.9%

Corsi For % (5v5)
WSH – 48.89%
BOS – 51.11%


Power Play:

WSH – 1/5

BOS – 1/5


Hits:

WSH – 57

BOS – 60


Blocks:

WSH – 20

BOS – 14


Scoring Chances For:

WSH – 33

BOS – 47



Scoring Chances For (5v5):

WSH – 23

BOS – 35



High Danger Chances For:

WSH – 9

BOS – 11
*Caps led high danger chances 8-3 after two periods then were out chanced by 7 for “high danger” the rest of the game


High Danger Chances For: (5v5):

WSH – 8

BOS – 7


Goaltending:
Ilya Samsonov
SV% .930 (Saved 40 of 43 shots faced)

Tuuka Rask
SV% .946 (Saved 35 of 37 shots faced)

My Takeaways from the Game:

1. Bruins Take Advantage of Capitals Miscues Late In Game (Again) – With the Capitals up 2-1 and mostly in control in the third period, Nic Dowd took a very unnecessary high-sticking penalty on Charlie McAvoy well behind the play. Seriously though, Nic? How stupid could you be? Nothing positive was going to happen there so why do it? “How to blow a third period lead in the playoffs sponsored by Nic Dowd.” The Bruins end up on the PP and score pretty easily. 2-2 game. In 2OT, the Bruins harmlessly dumped the puck in the zone. Justin Schultz was noticeably cruising in on the retrieval and it appears Craig Smith saw this and turned on the burners. Between that and Samsonov taking a nap behind the net, it was a pretty basic steal and easy finish for Smith. Kudos to him for hustling on the play.

2. Ilya Samsonov– In his first career playoff start, Samsonov played very well. Other than the 2OT error that cost the Caps the game, Samsonov was spectacular. He made 40 of 43 stops. He is the only reason the Caps had a chance to steal this game. Here is the save breakdown:

a. High Danger Saves – 3 for 4
b. Medium Danger Saves – 15 for 16
c. Low Danger Saves – 8 for 8

I say give the kid the start again and let’s see how he responds. The Bruins had plenty of quality chances in both overtime periods and Samsonov shut the door on them. It is gut check time for Sammy and the entire team.


3. Capitals 4th line Continues to Buzz – Of the Capitals 8 goals in three games, four of them have come from the Capitals 4th line. Hathaway has two goals and Nic Dowd has two beautiful deflections as well. The 4th line of of Hagelin-Dowd-Hathaway played every single game together during the regular season. Can we start calling them the HDH line? I like the sound of it. The HDH line expected to shut down the opposing teams’ top line, not score 50% of the goals in a series for the Caps. Heck, I’ll take it! If the Capitals are looking for an advantage in the series, this has to be one of the more prominent ones for them. The Bruins have their two top lines but after that, the 3rd and 4th line for the Bruins haven’t wow’ed me…yet.

Storylines to Watch for Game 4
1. How do the Caps Respond After Such a Gut-Wrenching Loss?
2. Can Samsonov repeat Game Three Performance?
3. Will the Capitals 4th Line Continue to Produce?

Thanks for reading. GO CAPS!
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