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65° Good Afternoon

Rangers-Caps, Game 4: 5 Things We Learned

1. Marian Gaborik can't win.

He finally scored a goal, he was flying much of the night, he was physical and he back-checked... And he was still the goat. It was simply an overzealous play to try and chip the puck away from the slot in the second OT, and it ended up in the net. Nothing has gone right for Gaborik this season. If there's still time to change his mojo, now would be good.

2. OT exposes the mismatch.

Did you notice Alexander Semin or Marcus Johansson the first 40 minutes? No? Me neither. They are mercurial talents for sure, but once they got going, the Caps had three lines controlling the play through OT. The Rangers could not keep up and could not control the play. Anything beyond 60 minutes has seemed to pull apart the tight Ranger play.

3. No lapses are allowed.

The Caps had a brief one, barely a minute, and Ruslan Fedotenko charged through to set up a pair of goals to make it 3-0. The Rangers had one that lasted a few minutes in the third, and suddenly it was 3-2 and the Caps were everywhere. A lesson for both sides that the hard work can't cease.

4. The rookies play like rookies on occasion.

The lapses on both sides were magnified by good rookie D-men on either side -- John Carlson for the Caps, Ryan McDonagh for the Rangers. Both rallied to steady themselves, but both have to understand you don't take a shift off.

5. If anyone knows about 3-1 comebacks, it's these teams.

The Caps are the last team to be beaten when up 3-1 in a series, by the Canadiens in the opening round last season. Before that, they were the last team to win a series when down 3-1, rallying past the Rangers in 2009. It ain't over yet.


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