NHL Playoffs Takeaways: Capitals, Holtby get rid of Flyers with shutout

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Source:   —  April 25, 2016, at 0:37 AM

It wasn't an simple series to near out, but presently the Presidents' Trophy winners have set a date with Pennsylvania'south other hockey team, the Pittsburgh Penguins.

NHL Playoffs Takeaways: Capitals, Holtby get rid of Flyers with shutout

The WA Capitals are breathing a sigh of relief as they prevented a Game seven and wrapped up their series with a one-0 win over the Philadelphia Flyers in Game six Sunday. It wasn't an simple series to near out, but presently the Presidents' Trophy winners have set a date with Pennsylvania'south other hockey team, the Pittsburgh Penguins.

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Sunday'south slate is jam-packed with huge games as the Dallas Stars see to near out the MN Wild on the road and the NY Islanders attempt to defend residence ice while sending the FL Panthers home early.

Here are some key takeaways from the Capitals-Flyers Game six and series. Stay tuned for more from the other games as they conclude.

1. Braden Holtby just barely outdueled his former tandem mate: Michal Neuvirth was so, so excellent in the three games he played in this series, but in Game six, Braden Holtby was just a tiny better, particularly late in the game when Philadelphia was pressing for the equalizer. Neuvirth made twenty-eight saves, while allowing one goal. Holtby made twenty-six stops.

These two were former teammates, both with the Capitals and with the Hersehy Bears where they won the Calder Cup together. Holtby was essentially Neuvirth'south backup back then. Things have changed a lot in the years since, but these two keep on an absolute indicate over the latest three games of the series.

two. The Capitals had to do something special to beat Neuvirth: Michal Neuvirth'south insane performance in this series made life challenging for one of the league'south best scoring teams. They'd multiple chances, but they really couldn't figure out their former teammate.

That was until WA made about as perfect a play as they could've to finish their scoring drought in Game six. It was Alex Ovechkin to Marcus Johansson to Nicklas Backstrom for the game'south only goal.

Ovi - Johansson - Backstrom - Shelf@washcaps lead#WSHvsPHI #StanleyCuphttps://t. co/pkotsivWmj

— #StanleyCup Playoffs (@NHL&#forty-one; April twenty-four, two thousand sixteen

three. Flyers didn't get advantage of a gifted five-on-3 power play: The officiating in this game was, flatly, not good. There were multiple questionable calls, but the biggest of them all came during a stretch where the Flyers ended up getting a prolonged 5-on-3 power play after not one, but two calls that shouldn't have been made.

The first was a high-sticking penalty against Nicklas Backstrom. He actually got four minutes because Flyers forward Ryan White was left bloodied when a adhere came up and hit him in the nose. Only the adhere in question belonged to teammate Chris VandeVelde and not Bakcstrom's.

Ryan White takes a adhere from his own teammate and the Caps obtain a four min penalty pic. twitter. com/AfB0NUlTOl

— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn&#forty-one; April twenty-four, two thousand sixteen

Then five seconds into that power play, Matt Niskanen was called for hooking against Wayne Simmonds, but it'south really, really tough to discover the hook.

However, with that golden opportunity, the Flyers did absolutely nothing with it. They generated very small despite the two-man advantage. Then after the Niskanen penalty was over, they still had time on the double-minor to Backstrom. Then the referees struck again, whistling Ryan White for holding Niskanen'south stick. Again, it was bordlerine at best.

Either way, the Flyers were handed a gift and did nothing with it. It'south tough to win when you can't get what you're given.

four. Flyers' stars were mostly close out in this series: Something that's sure to be remembered about this series is the lack of scoring from Philadelphia. The Flyers scored six goals in the all series. None of those came off the adhere of Claude Giroux, Wayne Simmonds or Brayden Schenn, the team'south three leading goal scorers during the regular season.

Those guys did a lot to obtain the Flyers to this point, particularly Simmonds who scored a ton of clutch goals, but they just couldn't discover the net in this one. Frustration definitely set in, as Simmonds can attest:

You can't question his heart. Like you Wayne Train. pic. twitter. com/Kq7xHTlXc5

— Sons of Penn (@SonsofPenn&#forty-one; April twenty-four, two thousand sixteen

Jakub Voracek and rising star Shayne Gostisbehere did each keep one in the net, but the Flyers not getting the production they needed out of the top of their lineup was a large reason their season ended.

5. Capitals-Penguins is going to be an awesome series: The first second-round matchup to be set in stone is one that could go down as the very best of the bunch. The Capitals will meet the Pittsburgh Penguins in Round two for yet another postseason sampling of Alex Ovechkin vs. Sidney Crosby. That'south a matchup made in TV ratings heaven and should draw a lot of eyeballs from even the most casual fans. It should also be a wildly entertaining series between two of the league'south best teams.

After Pittsburgh easily dispatched the NY Rangers in five games, they'll face a much tougher test in Washington. This will be the first time the two have met since the two thousand nine Stanley Cup Playoffs when the Penguins sent the Capitals residence in an intense seven-game series on the way to winning the Cup.

Keep onto your hats for this one.

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