The Ottawa Senators found out on Tuesday that it doesn't matter if you take away a goal from Alex Ovechkin or score a bad goal on Ilya Samsonov. Both will make you pay.
Check out a recap of the game here.
Observations from the win
Important goals for Ovechkin
With two goals, Alex Ovechkin reached 684 in his career tying him for 11th of all-time with Teemu Selanne. Obviously that's important on a macro-scale. On a micro-scale, Ovechkin had grown a bit cold of late with only four goals since the start of December. Two goals on Tuesday could potentially spark another run from him. Right when you begin to wonder if age is catching up to him, that's when he seems to rally.
The funny part about it was that Ovechkin had a near goal taken away as his shot beat goalie Craig Anderson, but defenseman Dylan DeMelo got to the puck on the goal line just before it crossed over.
Ovechkin downplayed whether he felt more motivated to get that goal back afterward.
"No, be honest with you, I thought it was in, but I was talking to our coaching staff and then I ask ref, they explain to me because of that camera view that you have to see the white and they didn't and you know, doesn't matter. You have to keep going and obviously, [Dmitry] Orlov makes a good play and I take a shot and it goes in."
Ovechkin scored his first goal 18 seconds later. I'm sorry, but he was definitely motivated to get the goal back.
Ilya Samsonov admitted to cheating over on Artem Anisimov's goal. He leaned to his right anticipating Anisimov to pass and that gave Anisimov some room and he fired the shot near-side for the goal.
Samsonov is still refining his skills, but one aspect that is not talked about enough is his mental strength. A bad goal like that one can sometimes lead to a bad game for a goalie, but nothing ever seems to rattle Samsonov.
"There's been a couple hiccups where he's still ended up pulling his game together," Reirden said. "But that one today, he leaned on a bit. That's getting used to the skill level of this every night, that guys can beat you from there. It was a great shot as well. But that's the only one that beat him and that's the sign of real maturity for me with him and continuing to grow. He comes to the bench with every whistle and there's zero change in his demeanor whether we're ahead, behind. He's a pro. At an early age, it's pretty impressive."
That goal to Anisimov came in the first period. He did not allow another goal the rest of the game.
The Caps took only one minor penalty. That is a step in the right direction.
I love the individual goal songs. From the crowd singing "Country Road" for T.J. Oshie's goals to Radko Gudas's AC/DC, this should be a thing forever.
Oshie opened up the flood gates in the second period. His goal got the Caps on the board and was the first of six straight the team would score.
Play of the game
It took Ovechkin just 18 seconds after getting denied a goal on the goal line to get it back.
Stat of the game
Ovechkin is now 11th all-time.
Since I gave you that one earlier, here are some bonus nuggets on Samsonov.
Quote of the game
Heading into the second period, Tuesday's game felt well in hand with Washington up 3-1. But Friday's game in Carolina felt well in hand too and Carolina scored three goals in the third period to make it 4-3. Reirden did not want to see that happen again.
"I didn't like the last time we were ahead by two goals in Carolina and we end up winning, but it wasn't the way we wanted to play. We talked about that going into the third, playing more to our identity throughout the game and then we score a few quick goals."
Hey, DeMelo. You think you made Ovechkin mad by stealing away that goal?
"Him and the crowd, I guess, were pretty disappointed. I just saw it on the goal line and tried to get there as quick as I could and it was nice to keep him off the scoresheet for a little bit."
Two goals for Ovechkin.
John Carlson had two assists so he fell short. Those two assists, however, put him back on pace for 100 points.
This would have been entertaining, but I'm guessing Dowd's stick throwing days are over.
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