Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Caps top Sens (again)

Capitals 6, Senators 3

After being surprisingly well outplayed for the first five minutes the Capitals swiftly mounted a comeback, taking a lead less than three minutes later and controlling the game for most of the remaining fifty-five minutes. Who's the first place team and who's the last place team again?

What the Capitals are showing is that they are a playoff caliber team. With this win they are 10-5-4 under Boudreau (a 104 point pace), have beaten Ottawa twice, tied Detroit and been competitive in every game they've played. The only questions at this point are whether they were in too deep a hole when Boudreau took over and whether or not they can stay healthy.

DMG's 3 Stars
(1) Mike Green
- 2 goals, 1 assist, +3
(2) Brooks Laich - 1 goal (game winner), 1 assist, +2
(3) Alexander Ovechkin - 2 assists, 5 hits, +1


"You can tell they feel confident playing us. I mean, you see them playing tonight, you'd think they would be at the top of the standings."

Quick Hits
  • Throwing Ray Emery into an already physical, high-tempo, high-pressure game? I guess that's what you'd call the "lesser of two evils".
  • Apparently Craig Laughlin either thinks Alexander Semin is a defenseman or thinks the average NHL team dresses only five defensemen. This may also be due to the fact that he apparently thinks NHL teams dress nineteen players for games.
  • Pettinger's apparently still snakebitten - he made a good read, took the puck to the net and got off a nice shot which was met by Martin Gerber's only good save of the afternoon and was later stopped by Emery on what Craig Laughlin called the "save of the game".
  • Bad decision by Semin to go after Chris Phillips and negate the upcoming powerplay. Bad call by the referees as well. Each should have received two for roughing and Phillips should have received two more for boarding.
  • When a guy like Brashear can protect players and lay heavy hits he's doing his job, but when he's able to get the other team to take penalties you can't ask for anything more.
  • When Hanlon did it I was critical of playing Brashear on the powerplay, however I think it was the right decision to put him out there for the last 23 seconds of the first after the Senators went down two men for a couple reasons, neither of which is that I love Coach Boudreau. One is that between the war of words coming from the Sens after last game (sore losers), the way the Senators were clearly frustrated with Brashear and Ray Emery's temper it was possible that the Senators could take yet another stupid penalty going after Brash. The other is that with how frustrated the Ottawa players were getting it wouldn't have been surprising to see rough stuff erupt at the buzzer without a guy like Brash on the ice.
All photos AP

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