Photo: Norm Hall
The Washington Capitals had won four in a row going into Saturday night, including a stirring comeback against a strong Wild team on Thursday. Playing the Coyotes, however, the Caps wasted a stunning second period, ending their board-certified, USDA-approved Winning Streak with a shootout loss.
Shane Doan scored a lay up on a loose puck during a first period power play. Troy Brouwer caught a very stretchy stretch pass from Mike Green and roofed it to tie the game early in the second. On the very next power play, John Carlson released a one-timer from high in the slot to give the Caps the lead.
After a looooooong span of special teams in the second period, the game finally returned to five-on-five. Joel Ward promptly scored a no-angle goal to make it 3-1 and utterly demoralize the Coyotes.
The Yotes came back in the third as Lauri Korpikoski dove to get one though Neuvirth’s five hole, and Shane Doan tied the score on a power play in regulation’s final two minutes.
Shootout bullets! Again! Every game!
- Vermette beat Neuvy glove side.
- Grabo didn’t even get a shot off.
- Boedker had some speed and roofed it backhand.
- Alex Ovechkin missed wide. Balls.
Coyotes beat Caps 4-3 (shootout).
- Moar shootouts? Nooooooo. Seriously, blowing a regulation win wins and getting points on a talent competition that’s basically a coin toss isn’t a good way to rack up standings points. The loser point is muy disappointante. (Someone check my Spanglish.)
- The Caps’ power play efficiency is off the chain. The Caps scored on two of their first three power play opportunities. They didn’t convert a five-on-three, which is kind of a pattern with these guys, but overall trends on the man advantage continue.
- Walton’s call of the Brouwer goal is great. He’s all, casual talking about Mike Green’s ice time, and then SUDDEN ERUPTION OF JOY!
- Troy Brouwer appeared to close his hand on the puck after a defensive-zone PK draw. He protested (probably because he didn’t actually touch it) and got called for unsportsmanlike in addition to delay of game. A too-many-men call on the ensuing penalty almost gave Phoenix a two-minute 5 on 3, but goalie Mike Smith played the puck past center ice. The Caps were about to kill off the 4-minute penalty when Nick Backstrom got busted for hooking. And before the Caps killed that off, Phoenix’s Mikkel Boedker rushed Neuvy in net. The Caps put up 10 PIMs all in all, and the Yotes got nothing out of it. So, yeah. A lot happening there.
- As soon as that very, very long special teams exhibition was over, Joel Ward got a nasty little redirect in the Phoenix net. So yeah, second periods are still going pretty well for the Caps.
- Phoenix is a positive possession team just barely, but the Caps had the advantage in this one. I’ll crunch the numbers tomorrow, but I think the Caps are improving in the game’s most important stat aside from blind luck.
- Mike Ribeiro was never my favorite Cap. He had some nice moves, but his line rarely seemed to get shots off of him at even-strength and his four power play goals on eight power play shots (or something like that) did not encourage me. So seeing him move to Phoenix didn’t break my heart, and seeing him get bounced from the face-off dot for mouthing off made me smile.
- Congratulations to Rob Klinkhammer for having the best name in the game.
- Nate Schmidt, proving he is an actual Capitals player, surrendered a puck-over-glass delay-of-game penalty with just over two minutes to go. That penalty erased the Caps’ lead– and what should have been a clean regulation win. I do not like how much the Caps have relied on extra time and the gimmick. Like I said: the shootout is basically a coin toss, and tonight the Caps finally lost that toss.
Long live the points-streak, which is the saddest thing in pro sports. The Caps should have taken two kingly points out of this one, but instead they take one sad little pity point. Bummer way to end a Saturday.
At least, Sunday should be interesting. The Capitals will play Semyon Varlamov and the Colorado Avalanche tomorrow night. See you there, right?
The 2013-14 Washington Capitals are this years version of the 2011-12 Florida Panthers
— Pat Greissing (@pgreissing) November 10, 2013