Alexander Ovechkin and Capitals Downed in O.T.

Matt FirchauContributor IApril 22, 2008

A viscous and hard fought seven-game series ended in a fitting fashion last night.  Alexander Ovechkin had a goal and an assist in the final game of the Washington Capital's season, but it was not enough to push them past the hungry Philadelphia Flyers.

Six minutes into the first period, Nicklas Backstrom netted the Caps a very nice one-goal lead to start the game off, with passes by Alexander Ovechkin and Sergei Federov.

The crowd was in an uproar for most of the first period. Every hit or change of possession, it seemed, caused the "Capital Crazed" to fire up. Nearing the end of the first the Flyers found themselves on the powerplay where Scottie Upshall put the puck in the back of the net to put the game back in a tie.

The second period started off just as hot as the first. Both teams came out hitting and the crowd took notice. 10 minutes in Sami Kapanen, quieted the fans when he scored off assists from Thorensen and Biron.

The Capitals desperately needed a lift if they were to keep their playoff hopes alive.

As if it were scripted, their star, Alexander Ovechkin came through in the clutch and netted his fourth goal of the playoffs to tie the game back up. This was turning out to be everything that the hockey world thought it would be.

This game had everything: big hits, great shots, beautiful passes and unbelievable saves. The third period was absolutely no different with back and forth action that left both teams tied at the end, sending the game into overtime.

As soon as hockey fans had strapped in for a great ending to a marvelous game they were shorted. Four minutes in to the first overtime period Joffrey Lupul put home a rebound to lift the Flyers into the second round of the playoffs. Of course, it was on the powerplay.

As is so fitting for the series. 

The Washington Capitals were left to wonder what could have been. Their young guns were heating up at just the right time when it all ended. Oh well Caps, like they say, there's always next year!

You can be sure Ovechkin will find himself back in the playoffs for many years to come.