Published: Tue, April 18, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Bozak's OT goal gives Maple Leafs series lead over Capitals


Most teams that play three consecutive playoff overtime games would be expected to start slowing down.

A year ago, NY trailed Pittsburgh 2-1 going into Game 4 at home and was shut out 5-0 before the Penguins closed the series in five games en route to winning the Stanley Cup.

That showed on the first goal of the game, when Schmidt raced toward Maple Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen on a two-on-one with Backstrom just 2:43 into the game. They scored twice in the first five minutes with both goals coming from their vaunted top line of Ovechkin, Backstrom and T.J. Oshie. But there are signs the American, who set franchise rookie records for goals and points during the regular season, is poised to break out as the series shifts back to Toronto for Games 3 and 4. The Rangers came into the playoffs with just two fewer points than the Canadiens who were the Atlantic division champions so there was a ton of hope for them to pull off a modest first round upset and play their way into the Atlantic division bracket but they are going to have to come out with one of their best games of the season in this one or they could fall victim to another early playoff exit.

Look ahead: The series stays in Toronto for Game 4 on Wednesday then returns to Washington for Game 5 on Friday. Down 2-1 in the series to the eighth seed is going to add even more pressure to the Caps. The 19-year-old sped through the neutral zone, fired a shot that ricocheted off a smattering of bodies and then batted a rebound behind Braden Holtby. Jake Gardiner would put the Leafs up 2-0 at the 9:44 mark to round out the Leafs scoring.

The Toronto Maple Leafs and Washington Capitals went to overtime for the third straight game in their playoff series. The unit stood tall again a short while later when the club was called for too many men.

The Hyman, Matthews and William Nylander line was unsafe, indeed, but now they'll have to convert if they want to keep their team rolling.

Alex Ovechkin (14) passed Peter Bondra (13) for first place on the Capitals' playoff power-play goals list.

"That has been the feeling the whole time", defenceman Morgan Rielly said after the Leafs beat the Washington Capitals 4-3 in overtime on Monday night. The Capitals finished the period with only three shots at Andersen, almost scoring when Kuznetsov's shot hit the crossbar.

Alex Ovechkin celebrates his first period goal. Each of those three scored in Game 3, but each time the Capitals built up a lead and got momentum, the Leafs rallied back.

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Ryan got free in the zone, tapping it in on assists by Kyle Turris and Erik Karlsson. Even-strength scoring had been lacking, so Washington rectified that with two goals in the opening period. Rinne finished with 34 saves.

Drew Stafford, Tim Schaller and Patrice Bergeron scored for the Bruins. Tuukka Rask stopped 28 shots.

In that stretch, dating back to Game 2 of the 2015 Eastern Conference Final, New York has been outscored by an aggregate 20-4 at Madison Square Garden. The Leafs power play is operating at only 16% and their penalty kill is the worst in the playoffs at 62%, the second lowest is 72% for Calgary.

NY pulled Lundqvist for an extra attacker with more than four minutes to go, and Skjei finally broke through.

The Wild's struggles are arguable the most perplexing.

Caps goal: Evgeny Kuznetsov from Justin Williams and Marcus Johansson at 5:39 in the 2nd period.

The Senators outshot the Bruins 10-3 in the first, taking advantage of several defensive breakdowns on their side of the ice.

Erik Karlsson's home-run pass is plenty pretty on its own, but Mike Hoffman's one-handed finish is swoon-worthy. "You need all five guys to get the puck back".

Then Brassard got on the board, slipping a slap shot by Rask for his second goal in two games.

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