That needs to be the professional viewpoint of the Washington Capitals fan base after observing the Tampa Bay Lightning publish a Four-2 win in opposition to the Caps to tie the best-of-seven Jap Convention ultimate 2-2.
When the Capitals reached the 3rd spherical of the playoffs for the primary time within the Alex Ovechkin generation, it gave the impression as though the group had in any case moved past its historical past of postseason frustration.
However in all probability we had been untimely in believing that.
The Capitals performed a robust recreation, carried out smartly sufficient to win Recreation Four, however had been stymied through a dominating goaltending efficiency through Tampa Bay’s Andrei Vasilevskiy.
Whilst you imagine that the Lightning went greater than 21 mins with out a shot on objective at one stretch, it sort of feels truthful to mention Vasilevskiy stole this recreation for the Lightning together with his 36 saves.
If you’re a long-suffering Caps fan, you’ve noticed this case too repeatedly earlier than.
Why did the Capitals lose? They went Zero-for-Four at the continual play, failing to transform on 3 consecutive probabilities within the first length. Steven Stamkos scored a power-play objective for Tampa Bay. In that first length, the dominating Capitals out-shot Tampa Bay 15-7 and but left the ice trailing 2-1.
The Capitals additionally owned the puck in the second one length, outshooting Tampa Bay 14-6. Even though the Capitals tied the sport 2-2, their incapability to take fee in that 2nd length used to be a key issue within the result of the sport.
The Capitals were given a boost from the go back of Nicklas Backstrom, who hadn’t performed on this sequence on account of a hand damage. However Vasilevskiy’s excellence negated all the certain elements the Capitals had going.
When Alex Killorn scored with eight:03 left within the 3rd length, the Lightning owned sufficient momentum to hold on for the win.
If the Capitals wish to put a good spin in this, they may be able to level to the truth that the sequence, between two outstanding groups, is 2-2 and they’re going to Tampa the place they received two times to begin this sequence.
They’re 7-1 at the street in those playoffs. And as Washington trainer Barry Trotz identified after Recreation Four, they’ve performed 3 sturdy video games on this sequence.
However the Lightning cross house feeling excellent about themselves. Their goalie is sizzling, their continual play (6-for-14) is clicking and their captain Steven Stamkos has scored in each and every recreation on this sequence and netted targets in six of his previous seven video games.
Alternatively, it’ll be tough for the Capitals, and their fanatics, no longer to take a look at the remaining two video games as ignored alternatives. Groups that win the primary two video games at the street are intended take fee of that sequence once they go back house. They didn’t grasp command. Doubt has crept again in.
For the reason that Capitals couldn’t win Recreation three or Recreation Four, we’re reminded once more that they personal a long historical past of postseason frustrations. Given the Capitals’ luggage, Saturday’s Recreation five is also a very powerful recreation the Capitals have performed in a few years.