Capitals Edge Rival In Shootout

Unlikely hero comes through for Caps

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    WASHINGTON DC, DC - SEPTEMBER 23: Mike Knuble #22 of the Washington Capitals skates against the Chicago Blackhawks during their preseason game on September 23, 2009 at the Verizon Center in Washington, DC. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

    The Washington Capitals' rivalry with the Pittsburgh Penguins has not been much of a rivalry at all this season. The Caps won their third meeting of the season against the Penguins last night in dramatic fashion. Wednesday’s game did not come down to Ovechkin vs. Crosby. 

    Instead, it was an unlikely hero who sealed it.

    Mike Knuble won the game in the fourth round of a shootout -- it was the veteran's first shootout goal ever. Knuble's not known for his slick puckhandling skills.  He usually scores his goals with a bull-in-a-china-shop mentality around the net.  So it's not hard to figure out why he was 0-for-4 in past shootout attempts. 
    But coach Bruce Boudreau had a hunch, and as it turned out, history did not matter as Knuble beat Marc-Andre Fleury with a quick shot to ice it 4-3.
    “I couldn't believe Bruce was doing it to me,'' Knuble told the AP after the game. “I didn't play in overtime at all, so I thought my night was over. So he taps you and you're just like 'Ho!' ... I told him when I got off the ice, 'I don't like you when you do that. Don't do that stuff to me.’”
    The Capitals have been especially dominant in the closing minutes of their games against the Penguins. They have outscored Pittsburgh 8-1 in the third period and overtime of their meetings this season.
    The win is especially sweet for Washington. They tied last year’s franchise record for points with 108. 
    Neither Ovechkin nor Crosby scored. Each star did notch an assist.