Flag mouthguards are the best.

Before today, Martin Erat‘s goals this year went like this: nothing for four months, accidentally scored on own team’s net, empty-netter. He literally hadn’t scored on an opponent’s net that had an actual goalie in it since April of last year. So, naturally every cynical Caps fan on the planet knew how his Erat’s Olympic tournament would go.

It was just inevitable that he’d break through on international ice, and that’s exactly what happened in the early morning hours of Friday. While you were sleeping, Erat scored the Czech Republic’s first goal in a 4-2 win over the Latvians.

David Krecji made the zone entry from neutral. Skating from center to the left wing, Krecji dropped to Erat, who had tons of room to fire a wrister from the slot.

Another angle:

GIFs by Ian Oland.

The Latvians scored twice, but the Czechs got goals from Voracek, Zidlicky, and some youngster named Jaromir Jagr to win their first game of the tournament.

Erat put 4 shots on goal in just 13 minutes of ice time. His Olympic goal total now matches his NHL goal total. So just deal with that.

And, oh yeah:

Keep ’em coming, Marty.

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  • Chris Cerullo

    What a wicked release…

  • Jonathan Garcia

    I’m fine with him scoring 100 goals (sorry, Peter’s wallet) if it gets his confidence back up so he can destroy when he gets back to DC.

  • Cooper

    Reporter: Congratulations on scoring your first goal of the tournament Marty

  • DonGiovanna

    Nawwww?! Martin, my man!

  • Ben Reed

    4 shots????? That’s 9% of his NHL season total (44).

    Still 0-fer against an NHL goalie since last spring.

  • Owen Johnson

    I didn’t even know this was allowed. Thanks for ruining my V-Day card for you already.

  • Jason

    Now if he could only do it here when he is getting paid over 3 million.

  • dylan wheatley

    i love martin erat and when he leaves dc im going to be very sad