Rachel Cohen’s Illuminated Take on Caps vs Devils


[Ed. note: Russian Machine Never Breaks’ resident artist, Rachel Cohen, attended last night’s home opener against the Devils. Here is her recap of that eventful game, doodles and all.]

Opening games seem, in my opinion, to be among the most exciting games of the year. But of all the opening nights I’ve been to, last night’s Devils-Caps game one has to be the #1 most exciting. Decked from head to toe in red (literally: I was wearing a wig), I entered Verizon Center for the first time since March; eager to see my Caps play again. And play they did!

Trailing by one goal after the first period, you could feel the tension in the air. No one wanted a repeat of the night before. I had a feeling, though: a feeling that the rest of this game would be great. The Caps dominated in the 2nd period, scoring four goals to take the lead. Two of those goals came from Alex Ovechkin, including one beautiful penalty shot.

Then came the third period. Already up 5-2, the Caps once again went on the penalty kill. As the Caps cleared the puck down the ice, New Jersey goalie Jonan Hedberd (who replaced Martin Brodeur) skated way out of the crease towards it, then handed it right to Brooks Laich and gave him a wide-open net for the shorthanded goal. Whoops.

With about four minutes to go, things got crazy. Ilya Kovalchuk dropped the gloves to fight Mike Green. MIKE. GREEN. The only other time I’ve seen Green fight was while playing NHL ’07. Usually when a fight breaks, I shout something like, “knock his block off!” This time, however, there were no jeers.


SlapShotLaughter. Hysterical laughter. It was honestly the funniest fight I’ve ever witnessed. Then everyone else joined in. Bradley fought. Hendricks fought. Even Carlson. And of course, Johansson, who was targeted by Pierre-Luc Whateverhislastnameis, who at one point looked like he was about to climb onto the Capitals bench, e.g. Tommy Hanrahan from Slap Shot.

What a game! What a crazy finish! It this is a sign of things to come, this season will be quite a ride. I can’t wait.


  • Dawn

    My jaw dropped to the ground when I saw Mike Green fighting! He’s one of the most laid-back guys I have ever seen and he was going at it with Ilya Kovalchuk like mad. Kovy fights like a bitch, btw… all that slapping and shit he was doing. I was laughing my ass off. 😛

  • CapsFan1975

    It had to be the most farcical I’ve ever seen. Neither of them really had their heart in it at all. WTF! (And then things degenerated after that.)

  • Tim

    I loved the Brads fight – he laid Clarkson out with that punch to the face. Kudos to Carlson for jumping a genuine goon in defense of Johansson. And here’s to seeing Dj. King pummel PLLL next time the Caps play the Devils.

    BTW – Rachel, were you on the JumboTron right after the Unleash the Fury video with the red wig and awesome sign?

  • I just couldn’t believe it when I saw Kovalchuk and Green drop the gloves. Neither of them can fight. At all. Hahahaha

    @Tim: Yes! That was me! :]

  • barb

    i love your recap! and the doodles add to the fun! 🙂