The Washington Capitals edged Southeast Division rivals Tampa Bay 6-5 in a shootout on Monday to pick up a hard-earned home victory over their playoff nemesis from last season.
Jason Chimera tied the scores with 2:44 left in regulation, his second goal of the third period, to send the game into overtime and Washington prevailed in the shootout, getting the better of the team who had swept them in last season's Eastern Conference semi-finals.
We have to work harder (this year), that's for sure, Chimera told reporters after recording his first two-goal game since 2007.
We know we have all the skill in the world on paper, everyone knows that, but you have to put the work boots on some nights and that's what counts.
The Capitals got a boost from newly acquired goaltender Tomas Vokoun, who was signed in the off-season and made 23 saves on his debut.
Vokoun allowed five goals in regulation but made five saves in overtime and another in the shootout to give the Caps their second win of the new season.
Matt Hendricks and Alexander Semin netted the shootout scores for the Capitals.
With the score tied at 3-3 heading into the third, Chimera put the Caps ahead before Tampa Bay (1-1-1) battled back to take the lead on goals from Nate Thompson and Brett Clark. Chimera then got his second goal of the game to send it into overtime.
Tampa Bay goaltender Dwayne Roloson made 38 saves but was beaten twice in the shootout to take the loss.