While the Bruins got off to a great start they just couldn’t hold the lead, losing 4-1 to the Washington Capitals on Thursday night.
Up until Thursday night, the Bruins were the last team to be undefeated on the road, with a 5-0-0 away game record this season.
Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby had been hoping to extend his shutout streak against the Bruins from last season. That dream ended midway through the first, with a powerplay goal by Jimmy Hayes. Despite the disheartening goal, Holtby managed to stay strong and shut the Bruins down for the remainder of the game.
“[Holtby] doesn’t really get rattled by anything,’’ Capitals center Brooks Laich said. ‘‘The first one’s a bad-luck goal, doesn’t faze him. He just locked it down the rest of the way.”
Holtby made an impressive 28 saves during the game and walked away with the game’s second star.
Though the Bruins took the lead, they were not able to maintain the momentum. Alexander Ovechkin tied things up for the Capitals late in the first. Five minutes into the second, Brooks Laich put the Capitals up by one. John Carlson added some insurance on the powerplay just a few minutes later.
In a final attempt to catch up, the Bruins pulled goaltender Tuukka Rask late in the third. Unfortunately the risk did not pay off, with Karl Alzner scoring an empty net goal and putting the Capitals out of reach.
“I thought once we scored that goal, that’s when we took our foot off the gas and let them get themselves back into the game,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said after the game, “[Washington is] a good defensive team, and we didn’t get enough shots on net, and we didn’t get enough players in that area as well to be able to score some goals.”
Julien also believes that penalties played a big role in the team’s loss. In the second period Boston took four penalties, resulting in one 5-on-3 situation that produced a goal for Washington.
As for the Capitals, they’re sticking to their vow to avoid going on any sort of losing streak this season. They have a respectable 9-3-0 record so far this season and they hope to keep it up.
The Bruins continue their road trip, playing their next game on Saturday against historical rivals the Montreal Canadiens. The Capitals stay at home to take on the Toronto Maple Leafs Saturday night.