5 Takeaways From Washington Capitals Win Over Toronto Maple Leafs

Washington Capitals Pick Up Big Win Over Toronto Maple Leafs

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Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports

On Sunday afternoon the Washington Capitals picked up a big 4-2 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The victory was the Capitals' second straight, although it did not come without a little struggle as Washington nearly blew a 3-0 lead. Despite this struggling, the win was a crucial pickup as the team looks to fight into one of the last playoff spots in the Eastern Conference. Here are the five biggest takeaways from the game.

5. Jaroslav Halak Is the Main Man In Net

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Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports

5. Jaroslav Halak Is the Main Man In Net

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Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports

Since sitting out his first game as a member of the Washington Capitals, Jaroslak Halak has played five-straight games, and surely is the main man moving forward. On Sunday afternoon Halak stopped 27 out of 29 shots, was active playing the puck, and simply didn't make some of the foolish mistakes that Braden Holtby was making. Washington is going to ride Halak until the end of the season, and no one can really argue with that decision.

4. Evgeny Kuznetsov Is the Real Deal

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

4 Evgeny Kuznetsov Is the Real Deal

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Evgeny Kuznetsov has now played four games since joining the Washington Capitals via Russia, and he continues to get better. Kuznetsov played a career-high 15:48 against Toronto, picked up one assist and generally looked to be a dominant force both retaining possession and creating opportunities. The youngster now has four points in the last two games, and it is clear he will live up to the hype placed upon him.

3. Ward-Fehr-Chimera Line Is the Best Third Pairing In NHL

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Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports

3. Ward-Fehr-Chimera Line Is the Best Third Pairing In NHL

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Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports

The best line for the Capitals continues to be their third line, as Joel Ward, Eric Fehr and Jason Chimera combine to get in the face of opponents, grind away in the corners and get pucks to the net. This group created two goals on Sunday, and at this point should be considered the best third unit in the NHL. If the Capitals can ever get their second line on course, they will have an offense that can't be stopped.

2. The Old Mike Green Has Come Back

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Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports

2. The Old Mike Green Has Come Back

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Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Green led the Capitals with 25:31 on the ice Sunday, and he deserved every second of it. Green was composed on the puck, was lethal moving it out of the back end, jumped into offensive rushes and even provided a stabilizing force in the back end. With nine points in his last ten games, Green is again a force on the stat sheet, and furthermore is once again performing like the No. 1 defender Washington expects him to be.

1. Playoff Spot Is on the Horizon

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

1. Playoff Spot Is on the Horizon

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Capitals' win on Sunday places them two points behind the Columbus Blue Jackets and New York Rangers for the last spots in the Eastern Conference with only 13 games to go. This means Washington has to get results moving forward, but after winning two straight it appears they are beginning to stabilize and go on a hot streak. A three-game swing through California is beckoning, but I would put money on the Capitals sneaking into the playoffs.

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