Happy Birthday, Ted! Caps beat Panthers 3-2

cleanshavenalexovechkin

Shave: check. Haircut: check. GWG: double check. (Photo credit: Mitchell Layton)

Last time the Washington Capitals and Florida Panthers met, we were treated to a mortifying 3-0 shutout on home ice. Meeting for the first time in the new year, again at Verizon Center, the Caps had a chance to redeem themselves and start off the season’s second half right.

Coming off a successful penalty kill, Florida’s Mike Santorelli earned the first goal of the night, making the best of some bad defensive reads and a great pass from Dmitry Kulikov. Eric Fehr returned fire, placing the puck on the top shelf after a wraparound attempt from Mike Green.  In the third and while on the power play, Mike Green used some creativity to create a backhand goal from the slot. Then Alex Ovechkin added another piece of film to his reel, a lovely semi-breakaway wrister while getting tripped. We thought Ovi’s was the insurance goal until Evgeny Dadonov turned a Varlamov rebound into the Panther’s second of the night. The away team had a primo chance to even it up in the final minute after Nick Backstrom’s crosscheck penalty, but it never happened. Caps beat Panthers 3-2.
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Breaking Up The Band

Nicklas Backstrom and Alex Ovechkin

Photo credit: Greg Fiume

Stop me if you heard this one before: Boudreau is making line changes. Not exactly Yoko and the Beatles, but it looks like Ovi and Backstrom are being split up. Again. Will it make a difference?

Tough to say. Last year the numbers suggested Backstrom needed Ovechkin way more than the reverse, but this year the numbers at even strength are not so clear.

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