WASHINGTON – Toronto native Tom Wilson scored his first NHL playoff goal 5:15 into overtime and the Washington Capitals survived a scare to beat the Maple Leafs 3-2 on Thursday night in Game 1 of their first-round series.
The top-seeded Capitals came back from a two-goal deficit to take the early lead in the series and at least momentarily stop the panic about a slip-up. Justin Williams scored twice in regulation, and Washington showed it could handle the adversity of falling behind.
Braden Holtby was up to the task in goal, stopping 35 of the 37 shots he faced. Toronto counterpart Frederik Andersen was arguably the best player on the ice with 41 saves before being beaten by Wilson with an absurd shot on the winner.
Mitch Marner and Jake Gardiner scored in the first period for Toronto, back in the playoffs for the first time since 2013.
Game 2 is Saturday night in Washington.
More AP NHL: http://apnews.com/tag/NHLhockey
Follow Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/SWhyno