Caps offense awakens, down 'Yotes 4-3
The Washington Capitals finally showed some of the offense they've been accustomed to over the years by beating the Phoenix Coyotes 4-3 Monday night at Verizon Center.
After falling behind 2-0 on two shorthanded goals, one on a penalty shot, the Caps offense woke up thanks to a couple of hometown bounces.
John Carlson's blast from the point hit a stick and deflected past Jason Labarbera to make it 2-1. Then it was rookie Cody Eakin's turn to get a bounce. Eakin ripped a slap shot of Keith Yandle's stick and off Labarbera's and into the net to tie the game at 2-2.
The Caps then seized the momentum, getting third period goals from Nicklas Backstrom and Brooks Laich. Laich's goal came on a 5-3 advantage for the Caps, their first powerplay goal in their last 27 chances.
Washington responded to the benching of star winger Alexander Semin, scoring more than three goals for the first time this month. Alex Ovechkin registered an assist on Backstrom's goal, his first point in his last five games.
Radim Vrbata got the scoring started with a shorthanded breakaway in the first. His shorty was followed by Lauri Korpikoski's first on the night, a penalty shot goal, which also came a man down. Korpikoski scored his second of the night with 11:28 left in the third, his fifth of the season.
Despite the horrific first period, the Caps outplayed the Coyotes badly in the second and third periods, showing energy on the forecheck that hasn't been seen in quite a while. The line of Eakin-Johansson-Ward put in great work in all three zones all night.
Tomas Vokoun wasn't spectacular, but did stop 20 of 23 shots, and made several key saves down the stretch in the third to earn his ninth win on the season.
Jason Labarbera wasn't great in net either for the Coyotes, stopping 27 of 21 Caps shots. He was, however, victimized on a 5 on 3 powerplay for the Caps.
- With the victory, Caps coach Bruce Boudreau notched his 200th career win, he's the fastest in NHL history to the mark, eclipsing Don Cherry.
- The Caps are now 1 for their last 32 on the powerplay thanks to Brooks Laich's PPG tonight.
- With the win, Tomas Vokoun's career mark is now even at 271-271-35.
- Caps forward Alex Semin was scratched for the second time in his career, the other being the opening night of his rookie year back in 2002.