Blue Jackets' Josh Anderson tossed from Game 1 after hit from behind

It really is tough to say, but for now it has to be Columbus. Trotz gave Grubauer the nod over 2016 Vezina Trophy victor Braden Holtby to start Game 1 but said afterward he'd consider his goaltending options ahead of Game 2 Sunday in Washington.

That set the stage for Panarin to drive around fellow Russian Dmitry Orlov before going backhand to forehand and beating Philipp Grubauer top shelf to give the Blue Jackets their first series lead in franchise history in their fourth opportunity.

Grubauer got the call for his first career playoff start after outplaying Holtby in the regular season, specifically down the stretch. Despite losing a chunk of its offense, Washington again won the Metropolitan Division and closed the season 8-2-0. The Blue Jackets' Josh Anderson was also ejected in the first period for hitting Capitals Michal Kempny from behind into the boards. In Sergei Bobrovsky, the Jackets have a game-changer goalie.

Kuznetsov left no doubt on his second goal in 29 seconds, firing a laser from the left faceoff circle past his fellow countryman at 18:21 with Washington still on the power play. Backstrom and Carlson assisted on both goals.

Burakovsky's mistake, which occurred in the Capitals' offensive zone, led to a Seth Jones goal with 4:46 left, which ended up forcing the extra period.

The Blue Jackets had to overcome an early two-goal deficit, and then another deficit late in the third period, to get the win.

Devante Smith-Pelly gave Washington a 3-2 lead at 5:12 of the period. Jones drew a tripping penalty on Andre Burakovsky that Washington coach Barry Trotz called unnecessary, nearly put the puck in his own net on the delayed penalty and then scored off a pass from Panarin on the ensuing power play with just 4:26 left in regulation.

The Washington Capitals on the other hand are in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the 10th time in 11 seasons. He scored 14 goals with 21 assists this season, playing mostly on a top line beside captain Alex Ovechkin, so if he were suspended for any playoff games, it would be a significant loss for Washington, already down a game in the series.

Norris Trophy-contending defenseman Seth Jones made things happen to send the game to overtime in the building where father Popeye spent two of his 11 National Basketball Association seasons.

Palat notched his second career postseason game with three points and first since Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals against the New York Rangers in 2015.

Nikita Zadorov and Blake Comeau scored for Colorado. But there are plenty of factors that make Game 2 particularly pivotal.

Brad Marchand, Sean Kuraly and David Krejci also scored, and Tuukka Rask made 26 saves.

Game two goes Saturday at the Garden before the series switches to Air Canada Centre on Monday. Kempny's head hit the glass, and he never returned, with the Capitals saying he'd be re-evaluated Friday.

Less than two minutes into the third period, Wilson took a charging penalty for leaving his feet while checking Alexander Wennberg.

  • Rosalie Stanley