If you haven't already checked out the game story for Saturday's hard-copy edition of The Post, the Capitals did quite a good job at limiting the Boston Bruins through the first 40 minutes of regulation and held a three-goal advantage while outshooting their opponents, 25-9, over the first two periods.
During a brief lapse by the Capitals, Boston used a pair of power-play goals 55 seconds apart to work its way back into the contest before eventually tying the game with roughly 10 minutes remaining in regulation. Washington managed to right itself for a 5-3 win, however, with a go-ahead goal by John Carlson and a four-save relief outing by Braden Holtby, who made his first regular season NHL appearance when Coach Bruce Boudreau pulled Michal Neuvirth.
There was little to complain about through the Capitals' first two periods as they focused on winning physical battles against the Bruins, who had defeated Washington twice this season. But after being able to shut down opponents well through most of the first month, Mike Green said the Capitals must find a way to put it all together.
"I think now that things are going well especially offensively -- we're scoring a little more goals than at first -- I think we're getting too confident and we have to stay [on an] even keel," said Green, who recorded two points. "This team gets a little too high at times and until we can figure out how to play an even keel game for 60 minutes this is going to happen to us."
Here are some other notes, quotes and observations from Friday's game:
* The third line trio of Jason Chimera, Boyd Gordon and Eric Fehr had a particularly strong game and managed to work their way on to the scoresheet with a round of pluses when they were on the ice for Carlson's eventual game-winner.
Early on they were especially noticeable as they gained a territorial advantage against Boston's top line of Milan Lucic, David Krejci and Nathan Horton. The Capitals' line managed to create pressure down low and appeared to be getting under the Bruins' skin at times as they matched physical play and jockeyed with their foes at any opportunity.
"They came to play and you can see signs of some guys -- like Eric playing better on Wednesday and I thought he played real good tonight -- breaking out of slumps and things," Boudreau said.
They also all contributed to Carlson's tally, which gave the Capitals a 4-3 lead. Gordon won a faceoff to the right of the Bruins' net, Fehr chipped the puck back to Carlson and Chimera created traffic in front of Tuukka Rask, who might not have seen the shot.
* Tyler Sloan recorded his fourth NHL goal almost a year to the day to his most recent marker a season ago. After missing two games with a hip-flexor injury, Sloan couldn't have asked for a much better return to the ice.
"I felt really good tonight actually my leg, hip had no problems," said Sloan, who also earned praise from Boudreau. "I had a meeting with Bruce and he said just play, play with confidence. And he mentioned shooting the puck, shooting it hard, through traffic and getting it on net so I tried to do that.
"Flash had a great faceoff, the puck came right back to my stick," Sloan said about his goal. "I just took a half wind up, put my head down and buried it. I just wanted to make sure it got through."
--Boudreau said he pulled Michal Neuvirth because he thought the 22-year-old goaltender "didn't look very good on goals two and three."
On the bench, Braden Holtby was quite surprised to find out he was going in the game.
"I was pretty shocked when Bruce told me," Holtby said, "but it was kind of cool to go into a tight game. Definitely got the heart pumping, but I'm glad Johnny could pull out a big shot for us to get the win."