After a shaky performance against Tampa Bay last week, Capitals goalie Tomas Vokoun has continued to improve with each game. Tonight, he peaked as the Caps rode a Vokoun shutout to victory over the Panthers, improving to an undefeated 5-0-0 in this young 2011-12 season. Vokoun was a perfect 20 for 20 on Panthers’ shots Tuesday night, a sweet shutout of his former team.
The Capitals were cruising against a tired Florida team, which was on the second night of back-to-back road games after a win in Tampa on Monday. But Washington failed to add insurance in the second period, carrying a one goal lead into the third.
Alexander Semin would quickly provide the two goal lead, however, scoring just 1:49 into the third period. Semin was the storyline entering the game, facing off against former teammate Matt Bradley after Bradley’s critical comments this summer. Semin scored on a perfect wrister as he coasted down the right side of the ice – it was a thing of beauty. The Caps winger set up the scoring chance in the defensive zone, his backcheck initiating the transition and goal on the other end. It was Semin’s second goal of the season.
Jason Chimera would remove all doubt, adding an empty netter with less than a minute remaining. It was Chimera’s team-leading fourth goal of the season. The Caps took advantage of an exhausted Florida team and won a game they were expected to win. They now travel to Philadelphia to face the Flyers on Thursday.