Caps down Panthers in Shootout

The Washington Capitals have won back to back games on consecutive nights, defeating the Florida Panthers in a shootout 3-2, in Washington.  Michal Neuvirth stopped 29 of 31 shots on net and stopped 2 of 3 in the shootout to preserve the win over the Panthers.

The Caps got on the board in the first period with Nicklas Backstrom’s 5th goal of the season.  With an absent Alex Ovechkin due to an upper body injury over the past two games, line mate Backstrom has tallied 3 goals and an assist and is a +3 rating over the past two games.  The Caps needed a leader to step up in Ovechkin’s absence and Backstrom has done just that.

Jesse Winchester tied the game at 1-1 at the 8:20 mark of the second period.  Just 36 second later, John Carlson scored his first goal of the season to give the Capitals a a 2-1 lead over Florida.   Carlson’s goal was assisted by Michael Latta, who scored his first NHL point, and Karl Alzner.

Former Cap Tomas Flesichmann would tie the game up late in the third period to force an overtime.  After the Caps and Panthers salted to a scores five minute overtime, the Caps and Panther proceeded to a shootout.  Mikhail Grabovski, Brooks Laich, and Nicklas Backstrom scored on Scott Clemmonsen to win the shootout.  The consecutive wins in consecutive nights moves Washington to 7-7 overall on the season.  At 14 points, the Caps sit 1 point out of second place and 8 points out of Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division.