T.J. Oshie scored the overtime winner to complete a hat trick and lift the Washington Capitals to a 4-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins in the opener of their second round playoff series.
Oshie beat the Penguin defenceman wide then used a wraparound shot to squeeze the puck between the far post and leg pad of Pittsburgh goalie Matt Murray at 9:33 of overtime.
There was a delay while NHL officials conducted a video review but the initial call of a good goal was confirmed by the video analysis.
“Their goaltender is an aggressive, big guy and I was hoping I could beat him to the far post if I got a chance,” Oshie said. “We thought we had the momentum on our side.”
Andre Burakovsky also scored for Washington and Braden Holtby made 42 saves.
The Penguins and Capitals are meeting in the playoffs for the first time since 2009 and game two is scheduled for Saturday.
Nick Bonino had a goal and an assist for Pittsburgh, and Ben Lovejoy and Evgeni Malkin added a goal apiece. Carl Hagelin had two assists. Murray finished with 31 saves.
Washington earned the Presidents’ Trophy and home ice advantage throughout the playoffs with a 120-point regular season, but Pittsburgh was the hottest club entering the postseason after going 28-10-3 during the second half of the season.
The first playoff meeting between Russia’s Alex Ovechkin and Canada’s Sidney Crosby in seven years lived up to expectations with quality scoring chances at both ends and a total of 80 shots on goal.
“One of the keys to our success late in games is that we never get down on each other,” Oshie said.
Oshie scored his first goal by stealing a pass by defenceman Olli Maatta and skating in alone on Murray before firing over his glove hand to tie the score 2-2.
The Capitals took a 3-2 lead at 3:23 of the third when Ovechkin recovered his own blocked shot and fed Oshie, whose backhander slid under Murray’s right pad.