Play twenty minutes and head to Chicago.
Not the gameplan that Bruce Boudreau drew up, to be sure, but the Caps will take those two points and skip town in a hurry. Some quick thoughts on the game:
- You know that in-game "entertainment" at Verizon Center where two fans compete for cheers to determine who butchers a 15-second clip of play-by-play work less? I'm not sure Al Koken would win that promotion more than maybe half the time.
- Alex Ovechkin showing wrap around and passing back short-side to Nicklas Backstrom = money.
- Alex Ovechkin's geometry (and selflessness) = money.
- Alex Ovechkin's shot blocking = nervous.
- I have never in my entire life seen a completely unimpeded player shoot further wide than Donald Brashear did on one first period attempt.
- Alex Semin got the "just shoot the damn puck" memo.
- Jordin Tootoo's dive into the boards after a Tom Poti love tap was Avery-esque, and the late tripping call on Matt Cooke was junk.
- Sami Lepisto is over-matched right now.
- Cristobal Huet is not.
- The turquoise tank top on the blonde behind the Caps' bench nearly was.
- Can Sergei Fedorov play 20 minutes in the first of back-to-backs in March and have anything left for the second game? We'll find out.
- Speaking of older Russians, Viktor Kozlov was a dog out there last night. Hopefully he was saving himself for the 'Hawks.
- The Caps missed David Steckel, as they were dominated in the faceoff circle (though Boyd Gordon did win 64% of his draws).
- The ice at the Sommet Center appeared to be a bit choppy. Unrelated - Sommet is pronounced So-may? Really?
Elsewhere 'Round the Rinks:
In light of Vesa Toskala's one goal allowed last night, there's a great "Best of the Worst" compilation over at PPP... Finally, one year ago today we recapped a huge Caps win that featured a four-point game by Tomas Fleischmann (which is as many points as he has in 11 games since February 15).
- Hart: Alexander Ovechkin (G, 2A, +2, 4 SOG, 2 Hits, 3 BkS
- Ross: Alexander Ovechkin, Shane Doan, Rick Nash, Sam Gagner, Derek Morris, Ales Hemsky, Tom Gilbert (3 points each)
- Norris: Derek Morris (G, 2A)
- Vezina: Brian Boucher (W, 29 saves on 30 shots against)
- Richard: Sean Avery, Curtis Glencross, Manny Malhotra (2G each)
- Calder: Sam Gagner (G, 2A, 4 SOG)
- Aiken: Ilya Bryzgalov (3 goals allowed on 11 shots against in just one period of work)