Three takeaways from Washington Capitals’ 4-3 overtime win over Toronto Maple Leafs

The last time the Washington Capitals faced the Toronto Maple Leafs, the final score was in favor of Washington, who managed a 4-3 win. On Tuesday, the story had the same ending, but played out in a completely different way.

Prior to puck drop, Alex Ovechkin had some advice for the Maple Leafs when it came to winning, which may have added some fuel to their showdown in Toronto.

In a back-and-forth game that featured multi-goal performances from Alex Ovechkin, John Carlson and Auston Matthews, Washington ultimately came out on top with a 4-3 overtime victory.

Let’s take a look at the three takeaways from Tuesday’s matchup:

1. Johnny for Norris

John Carlson’s among the biggest names in the NHL right now, and for good reason. The long-time Capitals defenseman, who went from a promising prospect to top-pairing blueliner, is making a hefty case for the Norris Trophy early on and continued his campaign with vigor on Tuesday.

After going without a point in Washington’s outstanding 6-5 comeback victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Friday, Carlson was right back at it for the Caps, scoring about halfway through the opening frame to tie the game at 1-1. He struck again on a second-period power play when he fired a slapshot past Frederik Andersen to give Washington a 2-1 lead.

The last time the Washington Capitals faced the Toronto Maple Leafs, the final score was in favor of Washington, who managed a 4-3 win. On Tuesday, the story had the same ending, but played out in a completely different way.

Prior to puck drop, Alex Ovechkin had some advice for the Maple Leafs when it came to winning, which may have added some fuel to their showdown in Toronto.

In a back-and-forth game that featured multi-goal performances from Alex Ovechkin, John Carlson and Auston Matthews, Washington ultimately came out on top with a 4-3 overtime victory.

Let’s take a look at the three takeaways from Tuesday’s matchup:

2. Leafs power play still lacking, but finally connects

Since John Tavares has been out of the lineup with a broken finger — which also came in a game against Washington — Toronto’s power play has been far from impressive.

Entering Tuesday’s contest, the Leafs were 1-for-12 over their last five games without their captain. And vs. the Caps the same storyline followed. They were 0-for-6 on their first opportunities before finally converting on their seventh attempt when William Nylander found Matthews in the slot, who ripped the puck past Braden Holtby to give Toronto a 3-2 lead.

Fortunately for the Maple Leafs, they’ve still managed to average at least three goals per game without Tavares in the lineup, thanks to Matthews and Co. stepping up in his absence.

However, in the long run, success on the man advantage will be crucial — regardless of Tavares’ presence or not — for a longer playoff run this season.

3. Ovechkin’s still got it

Alex Ovechkin knows how to do that hockey.

That’s stating the obvious, but the 34-year-old just won’t slow down. His prowess was evident on Tuesday, as he struck not once, but twice on the power play to pave the way to the 4-3 overtime victory. His first power-play tally was a finisher on a great end-to-end effort by T.J. Oshie to tie the game at 3-3, while his second came from the office and won the game in OT.

Beyond lighting the lamp, Ovechkin finished the game with 10 — yes, 10 — shots and also had primary assists on both of Carlson’s goals. The Russian winger leads all active skaters in career double-digit shot games with 49, the next leader being Eric Staal with nine, as per ESPN’s Dimitri Filipovic.

Washington’s captain now has 11 goals on the season, putting him in second in the league’s goal-scoring race (tied with Matthews), trailing leader Pastrnak by just one goal. His two goals on Tuesday put him at 669 for his career, surpassing Luc Robitaille (668) for the 12th-most goals in NHL history.

By: Sammi Silber

https://www.sportingnews.com/us/nhl/news/three-takeaways-from-washington-capitals-4-3-overtime-win-over-toronto-maple-leafs/7tan5jwomtgx1dvq6pdrzsz3k

Phillies reportedly only team talking to Bryce Harper about ‘true long-term deal’

Several teams are reportedly still interested in signing Bryce Harper, but all signs continue to point to the star outfielder ending up with the Philadelphia Phillies.

Harper and his agent Scott Boras met with several teams in the star outfielder’s home city of Las Vegas over the weekend, and the Los Angeles Dodgers are said to have re-emerged as a potential suitor. The San Francisco Giants also remain involved, but Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports that the Phillies are the only team discussing a “true long-term deal” with Harper.

Both the Dodgers and Giants prefer a short-term deal with Harper, and the Boras client almost certainly will not go for that. It’s possible — if not likely — that Boras is using interest from other teams as a strategy to get the Phillies to step forward with their best and final offer.

By: Steve DelVecchio

Original Article