Defending Champion Capitals Shutout Bruins in Season Opener

Courtesy of Creative Commons

By Mary Rose Saad  10/05/2018

The defending Stanley Cup champion Capitals had a stellar season opener at Capital One arena in DC, in more ways than one. Along with raising their first Stanley Cup banner, they blew out the Boston Bruins 7-0 on opening night. Braden Holtby had a perfect game between the pipes with 35 saves, and Evgeny Kuznetsov netted two power play goals. TJ Oshie and captain Alex Ovechkin both tallied goals and assists.

The Bruins looked more bad than big. Tuukka Rask allowed 5 goals on 19 shots. TJ Oshie drew first blood just 24 seconds into the game with a one-timer off Nicklas Backstrom. That assist bought Backstrom his 800th career point, making him the third Capital ever to do so. Evgeny Kuznetsov scored his first power-play goal at 1:47 to make it 2-0. Ovechkin took advantage of a power play at 4:17, bringing the Caps to 3-0.

Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said, “Guys should be a little hungrier…clearly weren’t ready to go and it just carried on from there.”

Boston seemed to further lose its appetite as Nick Dowd and Kuznetsov both netted goals to bury the Bruins further. At 5-0, Rask was replaced by Jaroslav Halak, who made 16 saves. John Carlson and Lars Eller would also add goals.

The Capitals set an NHL record for largest shutout victory by a defending Cup champion in its season opener.

The Bruins did manage to get their act together by posting a shutout of their own Thursday night, with a 4-0 win over the Sabres in Buffalo.