Few, if any, goalies have seen Alex Ovechkin in playoff form as often as Henrik Lundqvist. One can guess that the New York Rangers’ star netminder is probably all too familiar with seeing scary shots from the Washington Capitals’ key winger.
Ovechkin seems to be at his trigger-happy best in Game 1, and not just on that laser shot that currently stands as the only goal. It’s possible that he’s always yapping, really, but you get the impression that his trash talk gets a little louder when his game is on.
Microphones caught a great moment between the two, as Ovechkin taunted Lundqvist with “All series long baby, all series long” shortly after that goal:
That can’t be music to Lundqvist’s (or Rangers fans’) ears …
Here’s the goal that maybe left Ovechkin feeling extra bold:
The New York Rangers looked great during much of the first period of Game 1, but Alex Ovechkin’s one of those rare snipers who can change things with the flick of a wrist.
New York managed a 12-7 shot advantage in the opening frame, yet Ovechkin’s attempt was the only one to hit a net, giving the Washington Capitals an early 1-0 lead. Should Henrik Lundqvist have stopped this laser?
(Easier said than done, obviously.)
Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and Penguins netminder Marc-Andre Fleury have been at the top of their game so far tonight, so in a way, it seems appropriate that Pittsburgh’s first marker of the contest came under unusual circumstances.
With the Penguins down 1-0 and facing elimination, Sidney Crosby took a shot on goal that was stopped by Lundqvist. However, he could not control the rebound under the circumstances and it ended up hitting Nick Spaling in the arm as he crashed towards the net. The play was initially reviewed to determine if Spaling batted it in with his hand, but it was determined to be a good goal.
The NHL Situation Room issued this statement:
At 17:23 of the second period in the Pittsburgh Penguins/New York Rangers game, video review supported the referee’s call on the ice that the puck deflected off Nick Spaling and into the New York net in a legal fashion. According to Rule 78.4 “If an attacking player has the puck deflect into the net, off his skate or body, in any manner, the goal shall be allowed”. Good goal Pittsburgh.
Spaling only had nine goals in 82 games during the 2014-15 regular season. Coming into this contest, he had two career markers in 32 playoff contests.
The game remained tied at 1-1 going into the second intermission.