steve-oleksy-swollen-knuckles

Photo: Steve Oleksy’s Instagram

Hockey players are tough; here’s another story about that.

Let’s go on a trip to PPL Center, where the Hershey Bears on Wednesday night took on the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Thirty-two seconds into the game, Steve Oleksy took a rough run from defenseman Brandon Manning.

Binky was like oh hell no and dropped his gloves. As Manning and Oleksy pawed at each other in the corner, Oleksy’s helmet came off. Manning’s stayed glued to his head.

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kuznetsov-shootout

Even though Evgeny Kuznetsov is goalless in his last 12 games and scoreless in his last seven, he’s been dangerous lately every time he’s had the puck on his stick. On Wednesday night, the Capitals’ debonair dangler deked Oilers goaltender Viktor Fasth onto his rear and scored a most beautiful shootout goal.

(Someone had to do some paralyzing since Matt Hendricks didn’t get an attempt.)

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locker-slurpee

If you watched the Caps’ pre-game show tonight like I did, you saw some science. While Joe Beninati and Craig Laughlin gave a preview of the Caps’ match-up with the Stars tonight, we saw some magic on live TV.

Craig Laughlin literally absorbed an entire Slurpee into his head.

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ice-and-fire-csn-caps

Before the Washington Capitals take on the Dallas Stars tonight, CSN Mid Atlantic will debut a new song. The country-tinged rock anthem is performed by the D.C.-based Morrison Brothers Band and will serve as the opening theme for the network’s hockey coverage. The news was first reported by my figurative brother at the DC Sports Bog, Scott Allen.

The music video for “Ice on Fire” features — and I know this is shocking — ice and fire. It was shot at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. I’m told no Capitals players were burned alive in the making of this film.

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mathieu-perreault1

1/17 Update: Renaud Lavoie reports that Perreault’s arm was not fractured “but he’s injured.”

After scoring four goals in a single game earlier this week, Mathieu Perreault might just have had his season ended by Daniel Carcillo on Friday. In the waning seconds of the second period, Perreault slashed Duncan Keith’s stick out of his hands. Carcillo responded by cross-checking Perry from behind in the middle of the arm. Perreault’s arm appears to have been injured significantly.

Warning: This video is graphic and will make you feel very sad.

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trotz-honored

For a decade and a half, Barry Trotz WAS the Nashville Predators. He was the team’s first coach, bringing hockey to Music City and (possibly apocryphally) naming the team.

When Trotz came back to town for the first time, this time as coach of the Capitals, you just knew Nashville would welcome him with a big gesture. He’s that important to the city.

Early in the first period, the Predators debuted this touching video. The organization also thanked assistant coaches Lane Lambert and Mitch Korn.

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alex-ovechkin-lightsabers

NBCSN employs some of the most talented video people in the world. That’s why I need to show you this insane Vine featuring two-dimensional Alex Ovechkin trying to maim 2D Claude Giroux with a lightsaber. NBCSN made this to promote their national Wednesday Rivalry Night game between the Caps and Flyers.

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mathieu-perreault-four-goals

Photo: Winnipeg Jets

Teeny tiny center Mathieu Perreault was one hell of a player when he was in Washington. Despite never getting more than a passing look in the top-six, Perreault owned the puck, sporting a positive possession score every year he was in DC. Instead of getting a permanent role, general manager George McPhee dumped Perreault to Anaheim so that he could make room for Tom Wilson on the fourth line last season.

Perreault blossomed. After a dominant year as Anaheim’s second-line center, Perreault brought his #PerryCellys to Winnipeg, signing there as a free agent. Now he’s one of their most productive players, driving 55.1 percent of shot attempts and 51.2 percent of goals in the team’s favor. On Tuesday night, Perreault had the biggest game of his career (minus that one time he scored with his tongue).

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ovechkin-goal-flyers

Alex Ovechkin is making it rain goals. He’s got a five-game goal streak going. Lately, hockey’s just been easy for him.

Tonight’s blast on the power play continued the Russian machine’s hotness. The ping sounded like he played the slots and hit all sevens.

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liam-o-brien-sheamus

Halifax, Nova Scotia native Liam O’Brien was the biggest surprise of Capitals training camp this season. The scrappy fourth-line forward received a jersey on opening night and managed to play in 13 NHL games for the team through the season’s first two months. He even scored his first NHL goal and became beloved by fans for wagging his tongue. While his fairytale story has been compelling I’ve been fascinated with something different entirely: O’Brien’s resemblance to two-time WWE champion, Sheamus (see here, here, and here).

O’Brien must have seen this because he dressed up like the “The Celtic Warrior” over the weekend in Hershey. Goodness, this is the most amazing hockey/wrestling-themed thing I’ve ever seen.

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