On November 21, 2015, In Game Recap, By Chris Gordon
Photo: Patrick McDermott
It’s a Saturday night and all of you get free Egg McMuffins in the morning. That’s what happens when you play the Colorado Avalanche. Let’s go wild.
The scoring started just three minutes into the pre-holiday tilt when Jason Chimera fed the puck to Justin Williams from behind the net just after an Avs penalty expired, suggesting that Chimmer, despite previous evidence to the contrary, may in fact have motor skills.
Then, just over four minutes later, Nicklas Backstrom made another slick pass from behind the net, as Alex Ovechkin put home the one-timer for his 485th career tally.
Not to be outdone, Evgeny Kuznetsov decided to make his own awesome pass from below the red line, giving John Carlson his first point in seven games.
Then… unabashed glory. With 43 seconds left in the opening frame, Nate Schmidt, your favorite hockey player and also the best hockey player, scored, firing home an unassisted tally that was pure fake money. What a period.
The Caps jumped on the struggle bus in the second as Cody McLeod and Nathan MacKinnon cut the lead in half.
In the third, the Caps got back to doing their thang, with Kuznetsov giving the fans some free wings to go with their McDonald’s breakfast item. Dmitry Orlov chipped in with the world’s most ridiculous goal, before the Avs got one back on a deflection. Karl Alzner then added the cherry to your hockey game sundae. Ten goals, four by Washington defensemen, three by Russians. Fourteen Caps had points. Fun night! Caps top Avs 7-3!
Early in the second period against the Pacific Division leading Kings, Green snapped a 1-1 tie by skating into the slot to collect a rebound and firing the puck past Jhonas Enroth. It was typical aggressive Mike Green hockey. After the tally, Green broke into a smile before being hugged by his teammates, who are not Washington Capitals. Green had spent his entire 10-year career with the Caps before signing a three-year, $18-million deal with the Wings this offseason. Battling an injury for part of the season, he had previously six point in 13 games for Detroit.
“I’ve been kind of concentrating on trying to shoot the puck more and, you know, at least get something created,” Green told reporters after Detroit’s 3-2 victory. “So it felt good today.”
Miller Lite, Crispy M&Ms, the AARP.. and now Russian Machine Never Breaks. With tonight’s Sprint Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway, we entered the rarefied air of NASCAR sponsors. After a rain delay of nearly seven hours, our boy Ryan Ellis took to the track in his #33 ScienceLogic/RMNB Chevy SS for his debut race in NASCAR’s top series.
As we noted in our profile of him, Ryan is a huge Caps fan, former GMU hockey player, and RMNB reader from Ashburn. Ellis said his goal for the race was to learn and avoid accidents in the penultimate race of the year. He did just that, bringing his car home undamaged in 40th in a hectic race filled with uncertainties and the heat of NASCAR’s playoffs. The race was called due to rain after drivers completed 219 of the scheduled 312 laps. Going forward, Ryan hopes to build on this opportunity to get a full-time ride next year and continue to make Sprint Cup Series starts. Congrats to Ryan on a safe first race! This was one of the coolest things we’ve done as a blog. It was a thrill to share it with him. Let this be a lesson: RMNB readers are awesome!
On Saturday night, the Capitals held their fifth annual Casino Night at the Pentagon City Sheraton. Players and coaches made their best attempt at dressing up and participated in table games with fans. There was also a live auction for things like a Segway tour with players that raised a hell of a lot of money and a silent auction for memorabilia. No word yet on how much money was raised, but all of it will go to the team’s Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation. Now let’s look at goofy pictures of tipsy players, featuring captions by Peter Hassett.
On November 13, 2015, In Game Recap, By Chris Gordon
Photo: Patrick McDermott
The night after the Capitals beat the Flyers in a feisty game in which stuff happened, they returned to their home barn looking to extend their winning streak to two games.
The game was super boring and extremely even until Sam Bennett spun Jason Chimera like a top and fed the puck to Michael Frolik for a wrist shot goal from the slot.
Early in the third, Flames added a goal another goal from the slot, this time by Sean Monahan. A few minutes later, the Capitals got back in the game with an actual goal by Michael Latta. Suddenly the game became watchable. Jay Beagle rewarded everybody for paying attention with a tally with less than five minutes left, tying the game. The game went to 3-on-3, where Monahan scored again. Barry Trotz tried to challenge, because that’s a thing he can do now. It didn’t work. Flames beat Caps 3-2 (OT).
On November 10, 2015, In Game Recap, By Chris Gordon
The Capitals traveled to MoTown Tuesday night, where they still make cars just ones that are a little more Italian. It was a night of reunions and celebrations. But somebody forgot to invite the Caps. The fairy tale was not to be.
The Caps had a torrid pace through much of the first, Alex Ovechkin especially, but they couldn’t crack Petr Mzarek. In fact, the Wings actually scored the game’s opening goal, but Braden Holtby slipped the cookie out of the cookie jar with aplomb.
In the second, the Wings turned the nerd graphs upside down but the Capitals managed to keep the dam from overflowing.
That was until Andreas Athansiou (?) notched his first NHL tally on a fluke sharp angle shot. That was all. Ho hum. Wings blank Caps, 1-0.
Caps players Peter Bondra and Michal Pivoňka pose with Ellis and his Ashburn Ice House-sponsored car.
Ellis and his Science Logic Sprint Cup Car.
There’s a reason why race car drivers thank companies before family members in post-race interviews: they are the main reason they have a seat. This Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway, Ryan Ellis, a die-hard Caps fan and RMNB reader from Ashburn, will get a shot in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the sport’s top level. The 25-year-old will drive the Circle Sport #33 Chevy SS, sponsored by the Reston-based IT firm Science Logic, in the penultimate race of the season.
“I’m really, really freaking excited,” Ellis told me last month.
Tom Wilson is now in his third full NHL season. He was supposed to be bruising power forward and a complement to top-six playmakers. Instead, the 16th overall pick in 2012 has been a fourth line agitator almost his entire career, fighting and hitting to try to get himself noticed in limited ice time.
“When emotions get tied into close games, that’s how you don’t play,” Barry Trotz said of Wilson’s tomfoolery. “That’s why Tom never saw the ice again. He knows that and hopefully he learns from that.”