On October 24, 2013, In Game Recap, By Peter Hassett
Photo: Derek Leung
The Washington Capitals got their road trip off to a rocky yet successful start in Winnipeg on Tuesday. The hope was that the Caps could feed at the trough of Canada’s weaker teams to kick off their jaunt and maybe get back to .500. No better team to feed on than the Edmonton Oilers.
Alex Ovechkin wrapped up a sleepy first period with his 10th goal in 10 games: a quick wrister off the faceoff. Joel Ward crashed the net in the second to tip in John Carlson’s shot from the blue line. Nick Backstrom finished a great series from Ovechkin and Johansson early in the third to make it 3-0. Native son Jason Chimera wowed his family and friends with a gorgeous skill goal in the final 10 minutes.
Justin Schultz got a garbage goal in garbage time to bust up the shutout.
The Capitals were kind of a mess throughout Tuesday’s 5-4 win over the Winnipeg Jets. The game was tied after a wacky second period (featuring the Ovisplosion), and it took Nick Backstrom’s mystical Swedish skills and Troy Brouwer‘s finishing ability to restore a Caps lead.
It was the only pretty thing in an ugly (but happy!) game, so let’s give it a closer look.
On October 22, 2013, In Game Recap, By Peter Hassett
“In the shower I use a water-activated gel cleanser, then a honey almond body scrub, and on the face an exfoliating gel scrub. Then I apply an herb-mint facial mask, which I leave on for ten minutes while I prepare the rest of my routine.” (Photo: Jonathan Kozub)
The Capitals finally got the heck out of Dodge following a miserable homestand. The first game of their road trip found them in frosty Winnipeg, where the Capitals hoped to rid themselves of the gremlins in their defense and get an easy win from a soft opponent.
Haha. As if.
We were goalless until Mikhail Grabovski broke the tedium four minutes into the second period, sweeping a rebound home. The Caps swiftly surrendered that lead on a shorty by Bryan Little. To make junk worse, Andrew Ladd tipped in a Grant Clitsome shot just 70 seconds later. Luckily the Caps still have one guy who can deliver this season: Alex Ovechkin got two late in the second: a breakaway and a set play off the faceoff. Call it the Ovisplosion. Of course, Blake Wheeler knotted it at 3 goals apiece before the buzzer.
Troy Brouwer put then Caps ahead again in the third period, taking a Jedi pass from Nicky Backstrom right up in the kanooblian paint. Little got his second of the night a bit later as the Caps were unable to escape their own zone.
Into overtime we came and went without a result.
Wheeler had nothing for Holtby.
Grabo musta left the smooth moves elsewhere on his attempt.
Little’s attempt got kicked away.
Ovi couldn’t get a nibble from Pavelec.
Ladd beat Holtby stick-side to put the dirty Peg up.
Nicky B had a sneaky delay to tie it up and send us into extra rounds.
Jokinen wasn’t jokining with a sly five-holer. (Sorry.)
Brooks Laich roofed it, so kept on going.
Setoguchi got a low one on Holtby.
Troy Brouwer roofed it, so we kept on going.
Evander Kane got denied as the puck rolled on him.
The Caps’ James Heuser caught up with sudden powerplay contributor Joel Ward before tonight’s game in the Dirty Peg to talk about, ya know, whatever.
Seems there’s a lot on Wardo’s mind right now. Not sleep, no. He always gets a good night’s rest. But he seemed perturbed by how chatty his dining buddy Jason Chimera was last night. And man, he is into the Canadian corporations sponsoring the boards at MTS Centre. If Ward has some contractual obligation to name every company as if he were a NASCAR racer in victory lane, I’m unaware. He was downright effusive with thanks to TSN, Tim Horton’s, Bud Light, Pizza Pizza, and more.
Adam Oates made much-needed adjustments to lines on Friday morning, resulting in happy outcomes for the second line collectively and Marty Erat personally. The top line, however, is not doing much at even strength, and the third line is getting swamped in their own end. While the Caps have glimpses of hope and a ton of potential, the overall picture remains a bit gloomy. Should the Oates power play ever stop turning underpants into profit, stuff will get dire quick.
But there remains a ton of potential in this roster. There’s a winning team in here somewhere. Let’s explore.
Well, well, well. What do we have here? All of you #Grabbo Acolytes: prepare for defeat. All of you #Grabo Soldiers, get ready to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear their lamentations. The debate has been settled: it is Grabo, not Grabbo.
The battle has raged for ages (a few months) and taken many lives (140-character limits). Torontonians and a minority of Caps fans fell firmly into Camp Grabbo. Other people, meanwhile, sided with Camp Not Obviously and Completely Wrong. Because a plurality of Caps blogospherians fell into the B Singularity, we had a temporary armistice through the season’s first seven games, but recent developments may give us a lasting peace.
Quick update from Kettler Capitals Iceplex, where there appears to be changes for Friday morning’s practice. After seven games, Adam Oates has finally shifted up his lines. According to your boy Mike Vogel:
I joined Dave Johnson and MSE’s Jacob Raim for Press Row today. We talked Caps hockey: Ovechkin’s awesomeness, problems in the defensive zone, the glory of Grabo, and goalie drama. We also talked about basketball, but I kind of blacked out there for a second.
Take a gander and let me know what you think. Feel free to make fun of how bad I am at tying neckties while you’re at it.