The Minnesota Wild and Washington Capitals played a pretty high energy game last night at Verizon Center. Perhaps what was most surprising was that there were no fights. The hitting was hard and tempers were definitely flaring, but no one threw down. For a short time I really thought I we might see Roman Hamrlik get into a rare fight by throw down with Setphane Veilleux after Veilleux used some nasty stick express his outrage over Hamrlik flipping him to the ice. But it was not to be.
What was to be was Braden Holtby pitching a shutout, supported with goals by Jason Chimera, Mathieu Perreault, and Alex Ovechkin (who is hungry for more, although I always seem to miss or mangle the focus on the “feed me” gesture). Without Holtby heroics in the first period, he may have just been holding on late. Getting out of the first period 0-0 was the best thing that happened to the Capitals all night, and they have Holtby to thank for that.
For reading, go where the words are like Russian Machine, Ed Frankovic, Japer’s Rink, District Sports Page, and On Frozen Blog. You can see my photos below or on flickr.
Watching the Capitals at what may be their best in their current form at this time may not be as fun and exciting as when they were at their best in 2009 or 2010, but it sure was fun to watch yesterday’s game agains the Toronto Maple Leafs. There was no angst, no doom and gloom, no waiting for a shoe to drop…even when Mathieu Perreault put them up 2-0 in the first minute of the third period. That was kind of surprising given the Capitals recent history with 2-0 leads. Something about the game felt right. They were going to win. And give Michal Neuvirth a shutout victory in his 100th NHL game.
And there was the hitting. Which was good.
More of this please.
Read more at the regular places that tell their stories with words like On Frozen Blog, Ed Frankovic, Japer’s Rink, District Sports Page and Russian Machine. Check out my photos below or on flickr and thanks for stopping by!
More like this one, please. The Washington Capitals defeated the Montreal Canadiens by a score of 4-1 last night at Verizon Center. Of course, the sole Canadiens goal was scored by Rene Bourque. Shorthanded, too. But, you knew that. The Capitals came out of the gate hard in the first, Mathieu Perreault scored early and they just kept going. It was almost like the Capitals we used to know, but different, but the same result. All it took was a game against the worst Eastern Conference team after three ugly losses. Or maybe it was Michal Neuvirth’s new pads. Or maybe the in game pauses for the pads to be adjusted. Whatever the reason, let’s hope it’s a sign that things have finally turned a corner.
Read more about the game by people that can actually write about games like Russian Machine, Ed Frankovic, On Frozen Blog, Japer’s Rink, and District Sports Page. Look at my photos below or on flickr.
I know others think they beat me to the punch on using “Hatty for Matty,” but I’ve wanted to use that as a title since Mathieu Perreault scored his first NHL goal against the Florida Panthers in november 2009 (one of my favorite photos) and I almost immediately thought, “Wouldn’t it be great to see this guy score a hat trick? A hatty for Matty? Aw, man, that’s lame, but I gotta use that some day, if he ever comes through with a hat trick.” So with respect to Mike Vogel (the first public use of “Hatty For Matty” I can find, but I suck at the Twitters, so maybe someone else got it in first), I gotta go with what I gotta go with.”
Pretty cool game. Nice to see the Washington Capitals rally without Alex Ovechkin in the lineup and play some dominating hockey against the defending Stanley Cup winners and generally dominating team, the Boston Bruins, at times. Of course, that use makes it even more frustrating when we spend so much time watching them fumble on getting the puck out of their end for super long stretches. A win is a win is a win, so no real complaints. That’s about the limit of my insight that I’m willing to try and share. I’d just embarrass myself compared to Japer’s Rink, Russian Machine, Ed Frankovic, and On Frozen Blog (who, by the way, featured one of my favorite photos of this season in a great post about statistics the other day and I missed it being busy with real life). And some pics and more at Capitals Outsider (but strangely missing their Young Guns II poster).
So, my photos are below and on flickr.
WASHINGTON, DC – October 23, 2010: Washington Capitals forward Alexander Semin (#28) celebrates scoring his third goal of the night with Brooks Laich (#21) against the Atlanta Thrashers during their NHL ice hockey game at Verizon Center.
Number one NBA draft pick John Wall was a guest in Ted Leonsis’ box last night to watch Alex Semin score three and notch his first hat trick of the 2010-11 season last night against the Atlanta Thrashers. In a game that was in doubt until Tomas Fleischmann scored the game winner in overtime, Alex Semin was the star of the show with three goals, two coming off assists from AHL call up Matthieu Perrault. Mike Knuble put on another penalty killing clinic in the third period, at one point tying up all five Thrashers skaters deep in their own end during a Thrashers power play. The Capitals power play looked better, but kept sputtering despite the partial return of Mike Green. Alex Ovechkin was very quiet playing in his third consecutive game without any points…the first time he has done that since 2008, but he did throw a nice check that sent Thrashers’ forward Andrew Ladd head over heels into the Thrashers bench.
Read recaps at Japer’s Rink, The Peerless, Russian Machine Never Breaks and all the other regular Capitals blogs. Some of my photos can be seen here or on flickr.