Capitals beat Maple Leafs 5-4, tie series at 2 games apiece

Washington coach Barry Trotz tried Tom Wilson on his third line, and it paid off in a big way. However, the Caps have struggled to keep it going.

"In the playoffs, you're going to have times where you have to weather their storm and times they're going to have to weather our storm". High commitment. He is a growing young player who is physically very strong and he's grown to be a good penalty killer. "Real happy for him". It wasn't all bad, as the Leafs battled to the end and made it a close game, but to stand any chance at winning Game 5, they need to pick up the slack and improve in certain areas. "It's a situation when you have to fight through it", said Ovechkin, who scored in his second consecutive game to increase his franchise-best playoff totals in goals (43) and points (84). But Beagle has begun to get back into his rhythm, winning 10 out of his 20 face-offs in the last two games.

And to be honest, we were both ready to pack it in after Washington built an impressive 4-1 lead heading into the first intermission. When he missed Game 3, it ended his streak of 599 consecutive regular-season (540) and playoff games (59) played since 2010. "It's a huge privilege".

"This is the most fun time of the year, and the thing I tell players is you've earned the right to be here, so let's compete, it's the greatest fun you can have ... so dig in". "It's up to us to change it", defenseman Matt Niskanen said after Toronto overcame an early two-goal deficit and recorded a 4-3 overtime triumph on Monday.

Wilson gave Washington a two-goal cushion just 12 seconds later, re-directing an Eller shot past Frederik Andersen for his second goal of the series.

Surely, it wasn't a mystery for those who watched - or more importantly, participated in - the 5-4 Toronto loss against the Washington Capitals during Game 4 on Wednesday night at the Air Canada Centre.

The Maple Leafs rallied after the Capitals scored four times in the first for a 4-1 lead.

Expect a big response in DC by the Maple Leafs, but no matter the result of this exciting series, the Maple Leafs have made a statement to the rest of the National Hockey League that they are just getting started.

Those numbers in the critical zones aren't particularly high, and that suggests that the Capitals' overall improvement over the last two games has come within the neutral zone.

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The Leafs were all over the Capitals during their five-on-three to start the third, but despite putting five shots on net, they could not get one over the line and Washington would survive. Four minutes and 34 seconds into the first period Thursday night, Brown and company left the entire left side of the ice open for another Ovechkin rocket that made it 2-0 Washington.

With Orpik on the ice, the Maple Leafs have created shots that can be expected to create nearly four even-strength goals per 60 minutes of ice time. The first 39 and a half minutes - I would take that most every night.

"Yeah, I'm sure for him it's hard not to think about that type of thing", Maple Leafs center Nazem Kadri said. Babcock said it was "the fist time that maybe we weren't scared enough of them and it looked like it because our competition level wasn't good enough".

Not long after, Wilson scored at 13:41, deflecting a Lars Eller shot.

On his next shift, Wilson barreled over Rielly near the Washington blue line and then finished off a two-on-one sequence with Andre Burakovsky. Well, until the summer hits, then it will be back to wishing for August to hit so we can talk about the Vikings. "So, got a couple to go there".

Toronto pelted Holtby with five shots with almost two full minutes of a five-on-three advantage, but couldn't score.

Washington took the lead 2-1, just minutes into the 1st. The Caps challenged the play, which saw Nicklas Backstrom get tangled up with Andersen, but the initial call was confirmed.

The best-of-seven series is now a best-of-three, with two games in Washington. We knew it wasn't going to be an easy series, no matter what the media or the fans said.

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