April 18th, 2018
Things have not gone according to plan for the Washington Capitals. They lost the first two games of their first-round playoff series with the Columbus Blue Jackets, both in overtime, and they’ll need to right the ship if they want to tie this series by winning Thursday’s Game 4 (7:30 PM ET, USA). Columbus was –400 to win this series heading into Game 3 on Tuesday.
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At press time, it appears Washington will hand the reins to Braden Holtby (.907 save percentage) the rest of the way after Philipp Grubauer (.923 SV%) struggled in goal during the first two games. Grubauer allowed eight goals on 49 shots before being replaced by Holtby in the third period of Game 2; Holtby stopped seven shots before allowing Matt Calvert to score the game-winner in overtime.
The Blue Jackets were one of the league’s hottest teams at the end of the regular season, winning 13 of their last 17 games to eke out a Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference. They took advantage of Grubauer by scoring two power play goals in Game 1 and two more in Game 2, erasing a Washington lead on both occasions.
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