On December 13, 2001 the Capitals edged the Boston Bruins by a 2-1 score before 15,954 onlookers at MCI Center in Washington.
The two teams played a scoreless first period with Boston firing 11 shots on Capitals netminder Olie Kolzig and Washington answering with six shots on Bruins goaltender Byron Dafoe.
The Bruins had the better of play in the second period, too, outshooting Washington by a 15-8 margin. Boston also broke through on the scoreboard, taking a 1-0 lead on a power play goal by Jamie Rivers at the 13:27 mark.
Washington rookie Matt Pettinger knotted the score at 5:17 of the third when he took a pass from Dmitri Khristich and beat Dafoe. Midway through the period, the Caps took the lead on a goal by Ulf Dahlen. Former Bruin Adam Oates worked the puck up the ice and got it to Joe Sacco. The puck began to pinball as it entered the Boston zone, hitting various skates and sticks until it landed on Dahlen's tape. He banged it home from the side of the net, registering his 14th goal of the season. Boston pulled Dafoe with over a minute remaining in regulation but could not gain the equalizer. The Bruins outshot the Caps 10-6 in the third and 36-20 on the night.
With 35 saves on 36 shots, Kolzig was the easy choice for number one star. Dahlen's game-winner gained him recognition as the game's number two star. Bruins defenseman Hal Gill earned the third star. Gill was assigned to check Washington's Jaromir Jagr and he kept the Capital winger off the scoresheet while playing 25:01.