Verizon Center went positively bananas when Alex Ovechkin recorded his 1,000th career point, but there were 20 individuals who did not join in the fun: the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Why, you might ask, did the Penguins not applaud, cheer, or even stick-tap their mortal foe in the moment of his triumph? The answer… … …may surprise you.
This year’s iteration of the IIHF World Junior Championship featured three Capitals prospects and numerous wow moments on the way to the United States clawing their way to the gold medal on Thursday in Montreal. This years tournament will be remembered as having one of the best medal rounds in tournament history with three of the four games going to overtime and all four of the “big four” teams involved. Let’s look at the best moments for all those involved in this year’s tournament.
Saturday afternoon, the Capitals pulled out a 6-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils, but the game was bizarre. After Tom Wilson sent John Moore to the hospital, officials Marc Joannette and Justin St. Pierre could not put the whistle down, calling 15 minor penalties – 10 of which came against the Capitals. If you add in the two fights, there was a total of 50 penalty minutes doled out.
CSN Mid-Atlantic’s Alan May was blunt about Joannette and St. Pierre’s officiating in his post-game analysis. It sucked.
The IIHF World Junior Hockey Championships is an annual tournament, showcasing many of the top prospects in the game of hockey. The day after Christmas, prospects from ten countries come together to battle for the WJC title. It is a wonderful opportunity for hockey fans to get to watch the stars of tomorrow play for country pride on a large stage.
Fifteen current Washington Capitals have World Juniors experience including five of their top six defensemen (Nate Schmidt was the exception), and eight of their top nine forwards (except Justin Williams). While Braden Holtby never made it onto a Canadian World Junior squad, his net-mate, Philipp Grubauer, played in two tourneys for Germany.
This year’s WJC will be played in Montreal and Toronto and features three Capitals prospects. There’s also more than a couple interesting draft-eligible prospects to keep an eye on.
According to the Caps official Twitter account, Taylor Chorney is in for Nate Schmidt tonight.
Over the course of 82 games, in-game and lineup decisions over a small handful of games aren’t worth looking too far into. So, this season when the Caps have sat Schmidt in favor of Chorney, it’s been pretty easy to write it off as needing to get Chorney work. And hey, it’s only one game so sitting Schmidt isn’t a huge deal.
Until it is a huge deal. Schmidt continues to absolutely dominate on the Caps third pairing. His name should be written in the lineup in permanent marker every single night. And while it may feel petty to care about a lineup decision for one game, this kind of decision making process is what leads to Mike Weber getting a sweater for a playoff game.
Last week I wrote about the newest NHL expansion franchise in Las Vegas announcing that their name would be the “Vegas Golden Knights” and showcasing their new team logos. I was heavily critical of their chosen main logo not even being an actual knight’s helmet and looking more like something from a “Transformers” movie or 7th century Greece.
Well folks, the team is back in the news again this week. U.S. Army officials are putting the team name under review, as the U.S. Army Parachute Team has been using the name “Golden Knights” since the 1960s.
I don’t necessarily like picking on the new kid in class, but I have a few issues with what’s going on in Vegas. Here we go.
USA Today published an article on Thursday that describes the skeptical attitude many in hockey’s orthodoxy have towards puck possession statistics. The Corsi denialism movement, as described by Kevin Allen, is noteworthy for two reasons:
It’s understandable why people might mistrust advanced stats, but these arguments don’t survive a closer look.
Saturday night, the Capitals lost 5-1 to the fourth worst team in hockey. They were listless, sloppy, and undisciplined. The game, their second in two nights, was arguably their worst effort of the season. And for one Caps fan, enough was enough.
He wrote the following bold tweet. CSN put this up during their coverage of the game.
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