Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Avalanche/Caps Recap

Capitals 2, Avalanche 1

Although it took until the third period, the Caps picked up the game's first two tallies and were able to hold on 2-1 for a crucial win to open their five-game homestand.

With the game developing into a tight-checking, low-scoring affair you got the feeling it could be the grinders that decided the outcome and indeed that was the case with Donald Brashear and David Steckel accounting for the Capitals two goals, with assists from Brooks Laich, Matt Bradley, Boyd Gordon and Milan Jurcina. Secondary scoring has been an issue for the Caps all season and while they could still be getting more at least now it seems like someone from a checking line has been able to set up and find the twine when the team needs it the most.

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Of course, you can't downplay the importance of Olaf Kolzig's solid effort - while the Capitals played good defense and let only 19 shots get through to Olie he was very good in net, stopping 18 of them, including several big saves towards the end.

DMG's 3 Stars
(1) Olaf Kolzig - 18 saves on 19 shots (.947 save %)
(2) Brooks Laich - 1 assist, +1
(3) David Steckel - 1 goal (game winner), +1

Quick Hits

  • Kolzig's been the focus of criticism both on this blog and elsewhere, but I bet Tyler Arnason thinks Olie's still pretty good.
  • Steve Eminger played just 10:05 but had four hits (more than anyone else on either team) and blocked a shot - think he was trying to make a case for some more playing time?
  • The longest average shift for a Colorado player was Marek Svatos' 0:51. The Capitals had seven players who exceeded that: Viktor Kozlov (1:08), Nicklas Backstrom (1:07), Michael Nylander (1:06), Alexander Semin (1:06), Alexander Ovechkin (1:05), Brooks Laich (0:52) and Mike Green (0:52).
  • The Caps had four players (Eminger, Laich, Steckel and Bradley) who registered three or more hits.
  • Shaone Morrisonn's one shot on goal, zero points and -1 rating were apparently enough to get him selected as the game's third star.

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