WASHINGTON – Capitals forward Mathieu Perreault has scored more goals against the Ottawa Senators than against any other NHL opponent.
Four of Perreault’s 21 career tallies have come against the Senators, but none quite compare to the goal the 24-year-old scored in Wednesday’s 5-2 loss in Ottawa.
Trailing 4-1 midway through the third period, Perreault drove to the net where he was eventually rewarded — sort of — with his career-high 10th goal of the season.
Teammate Jason Chimera tried to feed a centering pass in Perreault’s direction, but on its way the puck caught a piece of Milan Michalek’s stick. The brief contact between puck and stick caused the disc to go airborne and strike Perreault in the face.
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Moments later, the puck was behind Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson and Perreault, thanks to his face, had pulled the Caps within two.
“It hit me but as I was going down. I looked [at the net], so I saw it go in and I knew it went in,” Perreault told the Capitals’ official website. “But at the same time, it kind of hurt. It hit me right in the teeth and tongue, but I’ll be alright.
“I got a little lucky but they say that when you go to the net and when you crash the net, good things happen,” he said.
Perreault was all smiles Thursday when discussing the goal. He was due for a dentist appointment in the afternoon to examine a chipped tooth he suffered on the play.
“Matty has been stepping up pretty well and scoring with his face,” head coach Dale Hunter said with a chuckle. “But it’s one of those things where he’s got 10 goals now and for Matty that’s a good job he’s done and he has to keep it going. We need him, as a team, to create offense for us.”
Perreault’s goal was so unusual that it even caught the attention of ESPN’s “Pardon the Interruption.” Show hosts Tony Kornheiser and Mike Wilbon reviewed the goal during their “Report Card” segment Thursday afternoon.
“I’ve had a lot of good times with my tongue,” Kornheiser began, “but I don’t want to score a goal with it. I just think to me- they didn’t even win and they had a terrible road trip. I give it a B-plus.”
Catch the Capitals and Montreal Canadiens Friday at 7 p.m. Coverage begins with Caps Pregame at 6:45 p.m. on Federal News Radio, WFED 1500AM and online.