Faceoff: 7:30 p.m., Verizon Center
TV: CSN, NBCSN | Radio: 1500 AM
Series tied, 2-2.
Updates follow in reverse-chronological order:
End of regulation: That’ll do it, folks. Game 4 goes to Braden Holtby and the Caps, 2-1. 44 saves for the 22-year-old rookie, and the Caps go back to Boston with a chance to take a 3-2 lead in this Eastern Conferece quarterfinal series.
Also, via the Bruins PR staff: The Bruins outshot the Capitals by a 45-21 margin, setting a Washington franchise record for shots allowed in a non-overtime playoff game. The previous record was 43 by the Lightning in Tampa Bay on April 12, 2003.
19:00 3rd: And off goes Tim Thomas.
14:10 3rd: Dennis Wideman just took a puck to the face but seems to be alright.
12:42 3rd: This game has been decidedly not-that-physical, but some fans in section 421 are getting chippy. Via Post contributor @SlavaMalamud: “A kerffuffle in the stands, as a guy in a Cam Neely jersey fights a guy in an Ovi jersey. А great matchup in real life. Security steps in.”
10:09 3rd: Mike Knuble gets whistled for holding Boychuk and Boston (which, according to Caps owner Ted Leonsis, gets all the calls) is on its first power play of the night.
8:34 3rd: Caps are pressing, and so are Bruins, but goalies are still stealing the show. Thomas stands his ground amid a flurry of Washington shots midway through the third.
Neil, end of 2nd: After starting the period down 1-6 in scoring chances, Caps ended the period 7-11, including the goal from Semin. Ovechkin (3) and Laich (3) lead the team. Total chances are 10-15 in Boston’s favor through two.
18:43 2nd: Alexander Semin was due for a goal in this contest, and he gets one on the power play, at that. His second in two games. Keith Aucoin collects his first NHL playoff point with the assist.
15:24 2nd: Caps have had some good chances this period. They’ve taken 14 shots but just haven’t been able to make any count.
9:45 2nd: Laich with a great chance that clanked right off the crossbar, and now the Caps go to the power play, Boychuk for hooking.
4:56 2nd: The crowd is on its feet and chanting “HOLT-BY, HOLT-BY” after the Caps netminder just thwarted a flurry of Bruins attempts. The Bruins already have 10 shots this period (24 overall), while Caps have six — total.
1:43 2nd: Holtby with a monster glove save on Chara to prevent the Bruins from taking an early 2-1 lead this period.
Neil, 1st int: Scoring chances were Caps 3 Boston 4, which isn’t bad considering shots were 14-3 in Boston’s favor during first period.
End of 1st: The Caps got their first power play of the game thanks to a Peverley slash on Jay Beagle, but without much (as in, zero shots) to show for it.
Katie, 17:03 1st: Immediately before the Bruins’ 2-on-1 rush that Peverley scored on, Tim Thomas made a toe save on a backhander from Brooks Laich directly in front. That’s a big, momentum shifting stop for the Bruins prior to the goal — even if it was only the second shot Thomas has faced in the contest.
13:12 1st: After a great save by Thomas on Laich, the Bruins finally cash in as Peverley brings it back on a 2-on-1 and scores through Holtby’s pads. Wideman got caught out of position, leaving Erskine as the only player back to stop the rush. The all-star defenseman has been on the ice for five of Boston’s seven goals in this series. Tied at 1.
Neil, 11:11 1st: Shots are lopsided (10-1 in Bruins favor) but scoring chances are still close. Caps have one, Boston two.
6:49 1st: Many thought this game would be called as tightly as the Pens-Flyers game last night, but not the case thus far — no whistle for a high stick to Mike Green’s face by Pouliot. The Caps defenseman fell to the ice and was slow to get up, but seems to be fine on the bench now. Here’s the video, via the speedy @JapersRink.
5:47 1st: The Caps still only have just one shot this period, but it’s been enough so far. Bruins are pressing a little more, firing nine on Holtby.
1:22, 1st: Well, that was quick. Brooks Laich feeds Marcus Johansson the puck on a 2-on-1 and the Swede rips it past Tim “THO-MAS, THO-MAS” (is what the fans in red are calling him at the moment). Also: “PEG-GY, PEG-GY.” 1-0 Caps.
7:30 p.m.: The Caps’ fans aren’t so happy about Backstrom’s suspension, either. Via @recordsandradio:
Neil, 7:15 p.m.: The lower-seeded team is 47-39 in first-round Game 4s when trailing 2-1 in the series. Boston is 12-14 in game 4s of all best-of-seven series when they are up 2-1 heading into that game. Even without Backstrom, the Caps beat Boston three out of four times this year during the regular season. Washington has a good chance at winning.
7:13 p.m.: Here’s tonight’s Capitals lineup:
7 p.m.: Greetings again from Verizon Center, where the Caps can even up their first-round series against Boston with a victory tonight.
Washington will be without top center Nicklas Backstrom, who was suspended for his cross check on Rich Peverley Monday night in Game 3. The Capitals haven’t been shy about expressing their unhappiness with the ruling, from ownership on down.
Backstrom's absence has created a ripple effect in the lineup, and in addition to some line shuffling, Knuble’s Knights will be pleased to see their guy make his postseason debut. Defenseman John Erskine is also expected back in the lineup tonight.
Stats guru Neil Greeberg will be contributing scoring chances as usual tonight, and some other Posties might chime in as well. Stay tuned for lineups, coming up soon.