If you had to describe Thursday night’s Philadelphia Flyers-Washington Capitals game in word, that word probably would be “painful.”
The Metropolitan Division rivals traded crushing hit after crushing hit during Game 1 of their first-round Stanley Cup playoff matchup, including one by Capitals star Alex Ovechkin that reportedly will sideline Flyers center Sean Couturier for the remainder of the series.
If Ovechkin leveling Couturier was the most important hit of the game, then a close second was the one Capitals forward Tom Wilson delivered on Andrew McDonald late in the third period.
Washington led 1-0 at the time, and Wilson was called for boarding. Philadelphia never saw the resulting power play, however, as Wayne Simmonds chose to go after Wilson, picking up a fighting major and a roughing minor in the process.
That decision proved costly for the Flyers. Simmonds, one of Philly’s best players, was forced to spend the remainder of the game in the penalty box, and Jay Beagle scored less than three minutes after the fight to seal a 2-0 win for the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Caps.
The game then ended with one final skirmish, as Philadelphia’s Braydenn Schenn blasted Karl Alzner at the buzzer to incite a full-team scrum.
Game 2 is Saturday night. Mark your calendars accordingly.
Thumbnail photo via Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports Images
Thumbnail photo via Washington Capitals right wing Tom Wilson
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