#3 Caps advance to the Finals for the first time
The Washington Capitals were in the Eastern Conference Final in 1998 and entered Game 6 against the Buffalo Sabres with a chance to make the finals for the first time in franchise history. It wasn’t easy.
There were no goals scored in the first period. In the second, Michael Peca put the Sabres up 1-0 with a goal at 13:04. 22 seconds later the Caps responded with a goal from Esa Tikkanen to tie the game.
In the third the Sabres took the lead with a goal from Paul Kruse. At 14:01 on the power play the Caps tied it with a goal from Peter Bondra. The game would require overtime.
In overtime, Adam Oates picked the pockets of Michal Grosek. Oates forced a turnover and it was picked up by Joe Juneau, who darted toward the other side before firing the puck across to Brian Bellows entering the zone.
Bellows tried to beat Dominik “The Dominator” Hasek but couldn’t. Hasek had trouble keeping track of the puck himself and couldn’t stop it stretching out his glove. Juneau was right there to pounce on the loose puck.
The Caps would go on to get swept by a dominant Detroit Red Wings team but they would get another chance at the Finals thanks to these next two moments.