A Game 3 is always an important game, especially in a tied series. Whoever wins, takes control with a 2-1 lead. For the Capitals it was their first home game of the series. However, the Caps have not been successful in the two previous Game 3’s they have played in these playoffs. They dropped Game 3 against Boston in round 1 and against New York in round 2. Even though that has been the case, the Caps came out victorious against both. Washington stole home ice in New Jersey and kept it with a 3-0 win today. Braden Holtby recorded his second shutout of the series.
The Devils came out flying in the first period. Their aggressive forecheck led to many chances. Overall they were out battling the Capitals in all areas. However, the Devils could not score a goal. As he has throughout the playoffs, Braden Holtby once again came up big for the Caps and kept them in the game. The first period ended scoreless.
The second period was an all out goalie duel between Marty Brodeur and Holtby. Both teams had many odd-man chances but could not capitalize as the goalies came up with equally tremendous saves. Braden Holtby made two saves on Ilya Kovalchuk on breakaways and Brodeur made several diving saves on the doorstep.
Like in Game 1, Roman Hamrlik scored a goal early in the third period to open up the scoring with his third goal in four games dating back to game 7 against New York. The goal was the result of a faceoff win on the power play. Not too long after, Jason Chimera deflected a Karl Alzner shot past Brodeur to give the Caps a 2-0 lead. The Devils pushed in an attempt to get within reach with many power play opportunities, but Holtby stayed strong. Washington held off the Devils and iced the cake when Brooks Laich scored an empty net goal to make it 3-0.
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