Capitals cruise past Penguins, tie Stanley Cup playoff series


April is nearly finished, and it's about to be May.

But after mounting another two-goal lead and this time building on it instead of blowing it, the Washington Capitals made sure it wasn't close enough for one questionable call either way to make a difference.

Wilson played with Ward for his first two seasons and they talked frequently about playing an honest game.

Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby had a very rough series against the Pittsburgh Penguins past year.

History clearly favors the Penguins.

The call on the ice was upheld and the Capitals had their two-goal lead. The Penguins looked good at four-on-four, so look for them to try to get as many of those as they can.

For that, the Capitals can thank a dearth of available camera angles, yes, but also a group-wide resiliency that helped them rebound from a demoralizing Game 1 loss in which they bumbled away a two-goal lead for the third time this postseason. Nobody could stop him in that series. It just has to be a 60-minute effort. Coming off a 15-goal, 27-point season in 2017-18, the 25-year-old winger had been held without a goal in his 14 previous National Hockey League playoff games.

In terms of goaltending, Matt Murray has been no slouch. "We know it's going to be a long series".

The Capitals have been no slouch of a team, either. There is a lot of griping about how interference reviews have been handled this season - and in many cases the griping is justified - but not all of them are completely arbitrary and inconsistent. Defensively, the Washington Capitals are allowing 2.9 goals per game and are killing 80.3 percent of their opponents power plays.

Don't let my wild optimism fool you.

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A second-round meeting between the Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins has been the seemingly inevitable annual rite of passage for the post-season over the past few seasons. "They don't have a clear view of the puck over the line", Crosby said.

If Thursday night was any indication, we're in for a great series.

They were able to add to it when Brett Connolly scored on a breakaway early in the second period, again capitalizing on another sloppy Penguins turnover, this time by Dominik Simon. The second and third period were good. Then the Penguins went to work to make the comeback.

Grabbing the win in game two was Braden Holtby, who stopped 32 of the 33 shots that he faced to improve to 34-32 with a 1.99 GAA and a.932 save percentage in the playoffs in his career, including 5-2 with a 1.95 GAA and a.932 save percentage this year.

Quickly after, it was Guentzel who put one home on a handsome redirection from an innocent Crosby shot from the far side of the boards.

After that, Pittsburgh went into shutdown mode.

Perhaps the whole puck made it past the line, and that would have cut the Pens deficit to one goal.

Being a Caps' fan I should say no.

"Marchand came in with a little bit of a different role, more of antagonistic role, and has developed into one of the top-five players in the game", Jones said.