As I mentioned yesterday, I did watch the game two days ago. I thought it was a pretty uneven effort, with OV's goal being a very lucky one (deflection behind the back just going under the crossbar? Ridiculous).
Once again, the Caps were outplayed pretty solidly, and only a great game by Holtby kept them in it long enough to get to overtime.
Fehr was out, as expected. Glencross was also scratched, which surprised me quite a bit. I was glad to see Bura on the ice. It wasn't one of his best games, but he looked good when he was there. He certainly was far from the worst forward on the ice for the Caps.
Wilson was on a mission to be a one-man wrecking crew. He got called for two penalties, but one of them seemed ludicrous, while the other seemed merely a bad call. I think he might have been the only Cap who was matching the hitting of the Islanders (it amazes me that the Islanders are both winning the possession battle, and winning the hitting battle. That's damned near impossible to do).
I did think OV got away with one with an early hit to the back of one of the Islanders, but given that I'd already seen the Isles do the same thing twice without a call left me feeling rather less than gracious about it.
Anyway, the Caps need to work on their breakout. It wasn't nearly as bad as in games one and three, but it wasn't good. Not nearly enough tape-to-tape passes, and way too many forced ones. I can't say that that was particularly on any one defender, either; it was all over the place. Some of that's on the Islanders excellent forecheck, of course, but the Caps need to improve. Maybe getting hit so much is making them tentative; I'm not sure.
Ward has continued to be quietly excellent at both ends of the ice. I'm still not sold on having him on the top line, but he's done very well there in a strictly complementary role.
MarJo hasn't really been rewarded for the effort, but he's also had an excellent series. I will say that I noticed him quite a bit less in this game than in the previous ones, though.
Anyway, the important part is that the Caps did get the deciding goal in overtime (nice shot, Backs) and can head back home with home ice advantage (such as it is). I hope they can just win the next two, though; I do not look forward to the possibility of another home game seven.
A big roadblock just got put in their way, though, as Grabovsky is healthy again. I can only hope that other players on their team decide that that's an excuse for them to take it easy, though, because otherwise the Caps are likely to lose the next two (which would still avoid game seven, I guess). Much as I love Grabbo, and wish him well, generally, I'm not keen on having him suiting up against the Caps.