On November 4, 1983, the Washington Capitals registered their first-ever regular season overtime triumph with a 5-4 win over the Vancouver Canucks at the Capital Centre in Landover.
Vancouver struck first, scoring twice within a 41-second span of the first period. After Darcy Rota's 12th goal of the season put Vancouver on the board, Tony Tanti's 15th pushed the lead to 2-0. The Caps outshot the Canucks 12-7 in the first period.
Washington pulled even with two rather quick goals of its own early in the second stanza. At 3:12, Bengt Gustafsson netted his sixth of the season to put the Caps on the board. Just 1:15 later, Mike Gartner's eighth goal tied the game at two. The Canucks again struck for a pair of quickies, however. Rota's second of the game regained the lead for Vancouver. Twenty-five seconds later, Patrik Sundstrom's eighth of the season restored the Canucks' two-goal lead. Al Jensen replaced Capitals' starting netminder Pat Riggin in goal with 6:05 remaining in the second period. The Canucks edged the Capitals in shots in the second, 11-10.
Down a pair heading into the third, the Capitals climbed back into the contest. Larry Murphy's second goal of the season brought the Caps to within one at the 5:11 mark of the third. With Sundstrom off for hooking, Darren Veitch bagged the equalizer at 6:30. The Caps outshot Vancouver in the third period, 13-6.
There was only one shot fired in the overtime session. It came off the stick of Gustafsson at 1:01 and it made its way past Vancouver netminder "King" Richard Brodeur. The Caps comeback was complete thanks to Gustafsson's second goal of the game. The Caps outshot Vancouver on the evening, 36-24.