Anthony Beauvillier scored twice, Semyon Varlamov shut out the team that drafted him and the New York Islanders knocked the Washington Capitals out of the playoffs in the first round by beating them 4-0 Thursday night in Game 5.
The Islanders will move on to face either the Tampa Bay Lightning or Boston Bruins in the second round. Coach Barry Trotz has now advanced in the post-season two years in a row since the Capitals opted to let him leave rather than giving him a raise after he led them to the Stanley Cup.
Washington has bowed out in the first round in each of the past two playoffs under replacement Todd Reirden, who was Trotz’s top assistant.
The Capitals erased a two-goal deficit in Game 4 Tuesday to avoid a sweep but didn’t have the same response in their second consecutive elimination game. Goaltender Braden Holtby didn’t get much help in allowing two goals on 15 shots in what could be his final game with the organization.
Beauvillier scored on the power play midway through the first period and then at even strength in the second, taking a big hit into the net from Tom Wilson while finishing his second goal of the game. Wilson’s Capitals teammates were unable to muster much in the way of pushback even with top centre Nicklas Backstrom back after going into concussion protocol and missing the past three games.
Empty-netters by Nick Leddy and Josh Bailey sealed it for New York, which didn’t miss a beat without injured alternate captain Cal Clutterbuck. Varlamov finished with 21 saves.
NOTES: The Islanders made a lineup change by putting Ross Johnston into the lineup in place of Derick Brassard. … New York was without D Johnny Boychuk yet again.
The Islanders will face Boston if Montreal beats Philadelphia, and the Flyers if top-seeded Philadelphia hangs on to defeat the Canadiens.