Las Vegas vs Capitals Game 4 Recap June 4 2018
Evgeny Kuznetsov (0-4—4), T.J. Oshie (1-2—3) and Nicklas Backstrom (0-3—3) combined for 1-9—10 to propel the Capitals to a 3-1 series lead and within one victory of their first Stanley Cup in franchise history.
Teams that hold a 3-1 lead in the Stanley Cup Final own an all-time series record of 32-1 (97.0%) since the Final went to the best-of-seven format in 1939. The lone exception came in 1942, when the Maple Leafs rallied from a 3-0 deficit to defeat the Red Wings in seven games.
KUZNETSOV MATCHES STANLEY CUP FINAL RECORD, REACHES 30 POINTS
Forward Evgeny Kuznetsov collected four assists to match a single-game Stanley Cup Final record, achieved by 11 other players. The last: Colorado’s Joe Sakic in Game 2 of the 1996 Final vs. FLA (8-1 W).
Kuznetsov’s four assists also equaled a Capitals’ single-game playoff record, achieved by Scott Stevens in Game 6 of the 1988 Patrick Division Final at NJD (7-2 W) and Andrei Nikolishin in Game 3 of the 1998 Eastern Conference Final at BUF (4-3 OT W).
Kuznetsov, who leads the playoffs with 12-19—31 (23 GP), became the fifth NHL player since 1997 to register 30 or more points in a single postseason.
Kuznetsov (Chelyabinsk, Russia), who owns a five-point lead over teammate Alex Ovechkin (14-12—26), is seeking to become the third Russian-born player to lead the NHL in postseason scoring during the League’s modern era (since 1943-44). The only two thus far: Detroit’s Sergei Fedorov (Pskov, Russia) in 1995 and Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin (Magnitogorsk, Russia) in 2009 and 2017.
OSHIE, BACKSTROM ALSO IGNITE WASHINGTON’S OFFENSE
T.J. Oshie (1-2—3) and Nicklas Backstrom (0-3—3) each posted three points to help the Capitals score six goals for the fourth time this postseason (23 GP).
Oshie (8-13—21) and Backstrom (5-17—22) became the third and fourth Capitals players to register 20 points this season, following Evgeny Kuznetsov (12-19—31) and Alex Ovechkin (14-12—26). Only 16 other teams have featured four players with 20-plus points in a single postseason, including the 2017 Stanley Cup champion Penguins and 2016 runner-up Sharks.
John Carlson (5-14—19) and Lars Eller (6-11—17) sit one and three points shy, respectively, of 20. Only two NHL teams have featured six players with 20-plus points in a single postseason: the 1983 Islanders, who captured their fourth straight Stanley Cup, and the 1985 Oilers, who won the second of four Stanley Cups in five years.
CAPITALS CONTINUE HISTORIC POWER-PLAY SUCCESS
The Capitals went 3-for-5 on the power play, raising their conversion rate to 29.6% this postseason (21-for-71). Among teams with at least 60 opportunities, only two have converted at a higher rate during a single playoff year since the League officially began tracking power-play percentage in 1977-78:
CARLSON MATCHES FRANCHISE RECORD
John Carlson scored in the second period to boost his career playoff totals (all w/ WSH) to 18-36—54 (99 GP), matching Calle Johansson (12-42—54 in 95 GP) for the most postseason points by a defenseman in Capitals history.
Carlson also owns the franchise playoff record for goals by a blueliner (18) and ranks third in assists by a defenseman (36), behind Scott Stevens (44) and Johansson (42).
SMITH-PELLY AGAIN FINDS TWINE
Forward Devante Smith-Pelly posted the winning goal, his second tally in as many games and sixth of the playoffs (23 GP) after scoring seven times during the regular season (75 GP). Smith-Pelly has registered one other winning goal this postseason, the series-clincher in Game 6 of the First Round at CBJ.
DID YOU KNOW?
The Capitals scored three goals in the opening period of a playoff game for just the 17th time in franchise history (274 GP). They last did so in Game 4 of the 2017 First Round at TOR.
GOLDEN KNIGHTS SUFFER RARE THIRD STRAIGHT DEFEAT
The Golden Knights suffered a third straight loss for just the fourth time in 101 games (regular season and playoffs). The other three instances, all during the regular season: Oct. 30 – Nov. 2 (0-3-0), Nov. 28 – Dec. 1 (0-3-0) and Feb. 26 – March 2 (0-2-1). They have not lost four consecutive games at any point in 2017-18.
FALL OUT BOY, PROSPECTS JOIN STANLEY CUP LIVE
A jam-packed crowd of thousands served as the backdrop for the fourth episode of Stanley Cup Live, featuring interviews with multiplatinum-selling rock band Fall Out Boy and 2018 NHL Draft prospects Evan Bouchard, Rasmus Dahlin, Noah Dobson, Andrei Svechnikov and Filip Zadina.
NHL SOCIAL ANNOUNCES FIRST ANNUAL FAN CHOICE AWARDS
NHL Social announced the first annual #NHLFanChoice Awards, which highlight the most entertaining content shared on social media during the 2017-18 season by players, teams and the League.
The awards, which feature finalists from all 31 teams, honor the unique way casual and avid NHL fans experience the game on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Fans can vote and see finalists for each of the 10 categories, including Top Player Tweet, at NHL.com/FanChoiceAwards.
GAME 3 GENERATES STRONG VIEWERSHIP
Across North America (NBCSN + CBC/SN + TVAS), Saturday’s Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final attracted an average audience of 6.801 million viewers, up 9 percent from last year. The first three games of the 2018 Stanley Cup Final delivered an average audience of 7.459 million viewers across North America, also up 9 percent from last year.