Boston Bruins

BOSTON, MA - MAY 21: Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals skates the puck by Taylor Hall #71 of the Boston Bruins in Game Four of the First Round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on May 21, 2021 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

These are the Washington Capitals that their fans are used to seeing.

Alex Ovechkin’s Caps may have broken through for a Stanley Cup win in 2018, but there’s a reason they’ve bowed out in the second round or earlier every other year. More often than not, Washington – and Ovechkin – have come up woefully short this time of year. It appears to be unfolding again for the Capitals and for Ovechkin, who managed to get just four of his 10 shot attempts on goal. The Bruins blocked the other six. Most notably, the B’s blocked four of Ovechkin’s five power-play shot attempts.

Ovechkin didn’t score until the Bruins had already extended their lead to three. He didn’t make a momentum-shifting type of hit until he leveled Brad Marchand after the game was well in hand for the Bruins.

Worst of all, Ovechkin let the Bruins push him around. Swarm him like a schoolyard gang.

As noted by 98.5 The Sports Hub’s own Ty Anderson in our Bruins postgame podcast Friday night, Ovechkin wasn’t the only Capitals star to falter in Game 4. Nicklas Backstrom disappeared, other than an inconsequential power play assist in the third period. Evgeny Kuznetsov, Tom Wilson, T.J. Oshie, and Anthony Mantha combined for a big ol’ number zero.

But Ovechkin has been the captain, the identity, the focal point, the engine for the Capitals for nearly two decades. And despite being one of the most prolific goal scorers the league has ever seen, he has one Stanley Cup to show for it and no other appearances in even the Conference Final. He’ll always have his name on the Cup, but he’s destined to finish his career as a playoff underachiever.

To see Ovechkin get clowned in so many ways by the Bruins in Game 4 was stunning. But to see him fail to live up to his immense talent in the first place? That was all too familiar.

Listen below for the latest Bruins postgame podcast after Game 4.

MORE: Has the dam broken for David Pastrnak?

Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff and follow him on Instagram @mattydsays. You can also email him at