The Associated PressWASHINGTON (AP) — When Frederik Andersen narrowly stopped Alex Ovechkin on the best chance the Washington Capitals got in the first overtime, Game 2 against the Toronto Maple Leafs dragged long into the night and into a second extra period.
After more than 90 minutes of hockey, Kasperi Kapanen scored the double OT winner as the Maple Leafs beat the Capitals 4-3 Saturday in the longest game of the playoffs so far. The Maple Leafs evened the series heading to Game 3 on Monday night in Toronto and have proven they can hang with Presidents’ Trophy-winning Washington.
Kapanen beat Braden Holtby 11:53 into the second overtime on a feed from Brian Boyle after scoring in similar fashion in the second period on a pass from Matt Martin. The son of longtime NHL forward Sami Kapanen didn’t get called up until late March but scored in the Maple Leafs’ playoff clincher and is developing quite the reputation for making big plays.
“I’ve got a lot of energy for sure,” Kapanen said. “Two big goals and I think our team played really well today. We deserved to win and I’m just really happy about the outcome.”
Ovechkin was chased down by Mitch Marner on his breakaway late in the first OT, and Andersen was able to deflect the puck just wide of the post.
“Nobody said it’s gonna be easy series,” Ovechkin said. “It’s OK. Nobody say we’re gonna win 4-0 and move forward. It’s a battle. They’re a good team.”
Though the series is tied, Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik said they probably didn’t deserve to win Game 1, either, surviving a scare when Tom Wilson scored in overtime. They’ve certainly tested Andersen plenty, but the Maple Leafs goaltender stopped 47 of the 50 shots he saw Saturday.
“He was by far our best player tonight,” said Toronto defenseman Jake Gardiner, who played a game-high 40:42. “When a goalie gets hot like that, it makes it easier for us.”
Ovechkin, John Carlson and Nicklas Backstrom scored in regulation for the Capitals, and Holtby finished with 47 saves. Washington fell behind in each of the first two games and will try to reverse that trend moving forward.
Toronto won’t have rugged defenseman Roman Polak for Game 3 or the rest of the playoffs after his gruesome right leg injury in the second period.