Troy Brouwer thought he had it. The puck was on his stick close to the net and all he had to do was lift it and put it past Ottawa Senators goalie Craig Anderson. Alex Ovechkin thought he had it, too, and just about started celebrating.
Instead the puck sailed over the net with 11:56 remaining in the second. Brouwer was bummed.
“I was pretty upset with myself,” he said. “I thought I had a real good opportunity, and I at least have to put it on net, give it a chance.”
Later, Brouwer got retribution. He streaked down the right wing with Ovechkin and Dennis Wideman and scored early in the third. It didn’t turn out to be the game-winner, but it was a big moment that contributed to the Caps’ 3-2 overtime win that snapped a four-game skid.
“Ovi did a good thing driving wide, Wides drove the net and the puck came over to me,” Brouwer said. “It was a little bit of a squeaker, but, hey, I’ll take it.”
It was Brouwer’s seventh goal of the season, but the smile on his face as Ovechkin came around the net to celebrate was hard to measure. It looked like he had just scored the biggest goal of the season.
Given the way the Caps’ recent weeks had been going, it was understandable.
“It’s a little bit of a surprise because it’s such a good pass,” Brouwer said. “We need all the right things on it, and it just squeaks through. You kind of expect the goalie to be over there. To see it go in the net, it’s a good feeling.”