On April 3, 1983 the Capitals tuned up for their first-ever trip to the Stanley Cup playoffs with a 3-0 win over the New York Rangers at the Capital Centre. The victory ended a three-game losing streak and a four-game winless streak.
After a scoreless first period in which the Rangers outshot the Caps 9-4, Bobby Carpenter started the scoring at 5:45 of the second. Carpenter beat New York's Eddie Mio for his 32nd of the season. At 8:16, Greg Theberge scored to make it 2-0, Caps. Craig Laughlin closed out the scoring with his 17th of the season at 13:01.
Washington outshot New York 11-9 in the second period and the Rangers held an 8-6 advantage in shots for the third. New York outshot Washington 26-21 for the game.
Pat Riggin and Al Jensen combined for the shutout with Jensen picking up the win. It was Jensen's 30th win as a Cap, tying him with Ron Low for the franchise's career record.