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NHL roundup: Capitals beat Bruins in overtime as Stanley Cup playoffs begin

The Washington Capitals celebrate their overtime win over the Boston Bruins in Game 1 of their playoff series May 15, 2021.
The Washington Capitals celebrate their 3-2 overtime win over the Boston Bruins in Game 1 of their Stanley Cup first-round playoff series Saturday night.
(Alex Brandon / Associated Press)

Nic Dowd deflected in T.J. Oshie’s shot from the blue line 4:41 into overtime to give the host Washington Capitals a 3-2 victory over the Boston Bruins on Saturday night in Game 1 of the first-round playoff series.

The Capitals weathered the loss of starting goaltender Vitek Vanecek to a lower-body injury early on, with backup Craig Anderson making 21 saves without allowing an even-strength goal.

As four Capitals players entered the offensive zone, Tom Wilson shuttled a pass back to Oshie, who blasted a one-timer on net. Dowd extended his stick for the deflection, and soon the puck trickled through Tuukka Rask’s leg pads and over the line.

“I think you just got to read the play,” Dowd said. “You have the opportunity to join the rush, you join the rush and, you know, you make a play, and we were fortunate enough to do that.”

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A challenge initiated by the NHL Situation Room investigated whether the Capitals entered the zone on side, but the video supported the call on the ice.

Wilson and Brendon Dillon also scored for the Capitals. Daniel Sprong and Anthony Mantha, making their playoff debuts, each had an assist.

Jake DeBrusk and Nick Ritchie scored for Boston, and Rask made 29 saves.

“I don’t think we let other teams win, to be honest with you,” DeBrusk said. “I think give them credit. They made a good play to win in overtime, and they played a solid game. It was a tight game, for us and for them, and I thought that there were some scoring chances either way.”

Capitals defenseman Zdeno Chara faced the Bruins in a playoff game for the first time after he spent 14 years as Boston’s captain. Chara finished with one shot and three hits.

The Capitals host Game 2 on Monday night before the teams head to Boston for Games 3 and 4 on Wednesday and Friday.

The Dodgers agreed to a contract with Albert Pujols for the rest of the season and then beat Miami 7-0, but Corey Seager is headed to the injured list after he was hit in the hand by a pitch.

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Canucks 4, Oilers 1

Matthew Highmore scored twice in the third period to help Vancouver beat host Edmonton in a regular-season game.

Travis Boyd and Bo Horvat also scored, and Thatcher Demko made 31 saves. J.T. Miller added two assists.

Adam Larsson scored for the Oilers in their regular-season finale. Edmonton will open the playoffs Wednesday at home against Winnipeg.

Oilers star Connor McDavid had an assist to finish the season with an NHL-leading 105 points.

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The Canucks have three games left against Calgary.


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