Photo credit: Elsa
Washcaps Philaflyers. Last game good. This game less good. Make words hurt so use less. Puck not in good net. Puck in bad net. Giroux make goal. Simmonds make goal. Gagne make goal. Maxbag Talbutt make goal. Ward make goal make Bryz sad. Groooooooooooo.
Flyers beat Caps 4-1.
- Claude Giroux got credit for the game’s first goal– just 23 seconds in– but it was mostly lady luck’s doing. Before the goal, the puck bounced off Karl Alzner‘s knee towards Scott Hartnell. A few seconds later, it hopped off his skate and into the arms of Giroux. I mark it down as a freak accident–but G was right to be waiting in the sweet spot.
- Despite the two goals against, the Caps of the first period really weren’t bad. They kept the possession game close. If they had kept it up, they could have won. The second period saw cede the puck to Philly with a 32-12 count of attempted shots.
- It’d be pretty cool to watch Simon Gagne get his first goal with his old club if that club weren’t the Philadelphia Flyers and that goal wasn’t scored against the Washington Capitals. But it was, and it was. So, no, hypothetical me, it was not pretty cool at all.
- 34:55 into the game, Braden Holtby got the hook, and Philipp Grubauer saw his first NHL action. Denying two Flyers shots in the first half-minute, Gru seemed up to the challenge. He stopped another barrage in the third and served with distinction during the penalty kill. Nothing not to love about his work tonight except the fact that he actually had to work tonight.
- But let’s not do the thing where we’re like “he stopped 14 shots make him the new starter!” Goalies need to face thousands of shots before we have any real idea how good they are. For now, let’s just say: “Nice [saving], kid. Don’t get cocky!”
- Mike Ribeiro committed a hooking penalty in the first and a pottymouth penalty in the third. He’s had a reputation as a hot head for a long time, and I guess these are the moments when those personality flaws let themselves out. Unfortunate.
- If the Behind the Net Shot Timeline for this game were a ski slope, it’d be the bunny slope.
- Even broken clocks are right twice a day. Even broken clocks can commit assault and battery on a 12-year-old and then get off because some dumb sports network paid him enough money to be obnoxious that he could afford a nice lawyer.
- Some nights you’re not even sure Troy Brouwer will show up to the rink: 0 shots, 1 blocked shot.
- Late in the game, Mathieu Perreault took a knee-on-knee hit from Harry Zolnierczyk, far away from the puck. Perry left the ice, apparently hurt.
Alex Ovechkin scored a hat trick two games ago. That was good. Last game he had zero shots on goal, but still participated in the offense. That was okay. Tonight he led the Caps with six shots and would have had more if not for a couple bad falls on rough ice. That’s still really good. Don’t believe the hype– especially when the hype comes from people who are paid to inflame and provoke instead of illuminate and inform.
Word on the street is that Edmonton’s front office was in attendance in Philly tonight. If the Caps were to make a move, whom would they move? Hard to say. Three games ago, everyone but Braden was a bum. One game ago, everyone was fantastic. Tonight was torpid overall.
Yeah, the Caps got smoked in the back half of a back-to-back while on the road. They’re gonna have to do better when away from Verizon Center and particularly when playing from behind.
It’s not gonna be all early leads and blowouts for the Caps, and they must learn to deal with that adversity. That was a problem under Boudreau’s leadership, and it seems to have survived his exit. Can Oates do better?