The Washington Capitals played their worst period of hockey of this Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series, as the New York Rangers scored three goals in their attempt to tie this series at two games apiece. The Rangers lead the Capitals 3-0 after period two in Game 4.
The Capitals took another penalty to avoid a potential Ranger break-in when Mike Green took down Derek Stepan for tripping at 2:56. It could have very well been called a penalty shot, but the Rangers were given, or forced depending on how you view the Rangers power play, to take the man advantage. That ended up being in the "force" column, as the Rangers were again average at best in creating chances, and missed on the power play again.
Just as soon as the power play entered however, another good Ranger bounce gave them the game's first tally. Michael Sauer took a shot that was guided past Chris Drury and wide. Artem Anisimov simply banked off a combination of Matt Hendricks' leg and Michal Neuvirth and into the net at 5:24. It was eerily similar to the goal Ruslan Fedotenko almost scored and had wiped out by the clock in Sunday's Game 3. It was Anisimov's first career Stanley Cup Playoff goal to make it 1-0 Rangers for the third time in four games.
The Rangers dominated the rest of the second period, with the Capitals often looking marooned on an island. The Rangers got their second goal as Ruslan Fedotenko took away the puck from John Carlson behind the net and came around in front. He found Marian Gaborik alone at the side of the net for essentially a slam dunk. It was Gaborik's long-awaited and almost demanded first goal of the series at 6:20, and they led 2-0.
On the very next rush, Ruslan Fedotenko hit the outside of the net with a shot. He sent a Hail Mary of a centering pass out to anyone on-coming. It found Brandon Dubinsky, and he found the net. The Rangers had only scored more than one goal in a game once in this series, and they got two in seven seconds to make it 3-0 at 6:27. The Garden was certainly audible at that moment. The Rangers were playing their best period of the series, and if the Sharks hadn't played their second period last night, maybe best of the playoffs.
Towards the end of the second period, the crowd became even more nuts, as it appears that Bruce Boudreau's attempt to deflect attention from his team's play in Game 3 has backfired. The chant from the crowd at the old, cylindrical building roared "Can you hear us!" for a solid minute toward their enemy. It would be hard to imagine him not being able to.