As they did against the Bruins in the first round, the Washington Capitals rebounded from a tough first loss to open the series against the Rangers and captured home-ice advantage with a 3-2 win at Madison Square Garden in Game 2. The Caps never trailed, and a late Alex Ovechkin power play goal delivered the win. Braden Holtby, who had some hiccups in Game 1, was on his game and impressive handling a flurry of shots (while also receiving some help from the pipes on a few occasions).
After a scoreless second period, Washington took a 2-1 lead into the final 20 minutes. But the Rangers would break through and tie it up on the power play seven minutes in, with Mike Knuble in the box for high-sticking. The goal was credited to Ryan Callahan who deflected a Michael Del Zotto shot from the right circle. The shot initially changed directions off the stick of Washington defenseman John Carlson and then Callahan's re-direction sent a bouncing puck past the right side of Braden Holtby, who was dealing with heavy traffic in front. Video of Callahan's goal below:
Alexander Ovechkin, however, put the Caps back in front with a power play goal of his own. Ovie, who's had his minutes reduced by Dale Hunter, fired an absolute snipe from center ice on a wrist shot that went right over the glove of Henrik Lundqvist. It began with a face-off win by Nicklas Backstrom to start the power play, as Ovechkin controlled the puck at the top of the zone. Backstrom also provided a nice screen, winning the face off against Brian Boyle and then obstructing the gigantic Rangers forward from getting out to cover Ovechkin. Ovie then skated to center ice and let it rip. Video the game-winning goal below:
It was a great win for Washington, evening it up 1-1 in what looks to be another hard-fought evenly matched series. The action now moves to Chinatown, with Game 3 set for Wednesday evening at Verizon Center.
Stay tuned to this StoryStream for updates throughout the Capitals and Rangers Eastern Conference semifinal series. For more news and analysis on the Caps, visit Japers' Rink. For the opponent's perspective during the series, visit Blueshirt Banter. And for all your news on the NHL Playoffs, check out SB Nation's NHL hub.