ovechkin-shootout-goal

Photo: Alex Brandon

While Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin is one of the greatest natural goal scorers of all-time, he’s never been lights out in the shootout. In his career, Ovechkin has connected on 30.2% of his shots, which is less effective than Nicklas Backstrom, Eric Fehr, Brooks Laich, and Evgeny Kuznetsov.

This season, new bench boss Barry Trotz has utilized Ovechkin in the clean-up spot, having him shoot only if a shootout is tied after three rounds. On Saturday, to change the bad juju after two straight shootout losses, Trotz let assistant coach and always-dour-human-being Blaine Forsythe pick the third shooter.

He went with the Russian machine. It paid off.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

Brooks Laich Got Hurt Again (GIF)

laich-injured

During the 2012 lockout, Capitals center Brooks Laich injured his groin playing for the Kloten Flyers. Since then he’s struggled through injury, missing 70 games over the last two seasons.

Laich promised that this campaign would be different, and so far it has. Through five games his groin hasn’t visibly hindered him. He’s played big minutes. But during the third period of Saturday’s game, Laich absorbed a tough shoulder-to-shoulder hit from noted goon Shawn Thornton. He immediately left the game.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

Undefeated in #Rego: Caps beat Panthers 2-1 (SO)!

Patrick McDermott

Best player of the game in my book. (Photo: Patrick McDermott)

The Washington Capitals dominated the Florida Panthers at possession on Saturday, but getting the puck in the net is another matter. A couple penalties in the third penalty made this thing way more competitive than it should have been. Another game that took 65-plus minutes to decide.

Eric Fehr sent a wizardly pass to Jason Chimera, who scored the goal’s first goal with a nice backhand. Brad Boyes tied it up by swatting in a loose puck during an early third-period power play. That goal forced overtime.

The dry scrape was a bunch of nothing, so let’s do this… ugh… again.

Shootout bullets!

  • Kuznetsov put the biscuit in the basket
  • Huberdeau put the biscuit in the basket
  • Backstrom put the biscuit in the basket
  • Jokinen did NOT put the biscuit
  • Ovi put the biscuit in the basket

Caps beat Panthers 2-1 (shootout)!

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

Caps vs Panthers Pregame: Peters, Panthers, Puppies

I am a puddle. (Photo: Capitals)

The Capitals will wrap up their three-game homestand tonight at 7 PM by showing the Florida Panthers what a packed hockey arena looks like. Tune in to CSN-DC and get ready to welcome Justin Peters, scheduled to make his first start in net.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 2-0-2 51.40% 104.2 27.8% 93.3%
Florida Panthers 1-2-1 54.67% 97.8 5.6% 72.7%

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

EightToFastToCatch getting a work in the slop

EightToFastToCatch getting a work in the slop (Photo: Anne Frederick / Maryland Million Ltd)

When we last left our four-legged equine hero, EightToFastToCatch, a local Thoroughbred named for Alex Ovechkin, he had just won the 2011 renewal of the Maryland Million Classic. Just ahead of puck drop against the Panthers at Verizon on Saturday, horsey Ovi will be looking to score his own hat trick, right up the road at Laurel Park.

Since 2011, ETFTC has had 19 races and found the winners’ circle 7 times, most notably with a repeat win in the 2013 Classic. Where was our coverage in those intervening years? Simple – in the 2012 Classic he ran 5th and we were so gripped by NHL lockout paralysis we could barely get out of bed, let alone play the races. I’m sure we have some other excuse for 2013… maybe we blame Oates, but that’s a bad horse pun.

Now an EIGHT year-old, this gelding (don’t ask!), is wrapping up his career, and has one more race on his schedule after today’s mile-and-an-EIGHTH Classic. And if his engine and the Racing Gods have their way, he’ll cross the finish line first on Saturday, ahead of his EIGHT rivals, and get his 3rd Classic win, a rare racing hat trick. The track odds-maker installed his as the prohibitive 3-5 favorite. It may not make dollars and sense to bet on him at such a low price, but we’re going to cheer for him just as loud (and obnoxiously) as we do his namesake.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

That Weird Moment When the Devils Forgot How to Hockey

Vine by @recordsANDradio

At times on Thursday night, it looked like someone put a hex on the New Jersey Devils. The defense-first team surrendered six goals to the Capitals, took a bunch of undisciplined penalties, and didn’t seem like themselves. Then there’s this strange play.

As 23-year-old defenseman Eric Gelinas takes a shot from the point, his attempt is blocked by his own teammate. As the puck dribbles back to him, Gelinas tries dishing it to his defensive partner. He falls over too.

It’s a catastrophe.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

alex-ovechkin-with-puppy

Photo: MSE Foundation

Last year, Washington Capitals players wore silly props for a Dog Calendar, which raised a bunch of money for Homeward Trails Animal Rescue. The Caps organization is producing the calendar again this year, and the photoshoot is being held at the Potomac Regional Overlook Park in Arlington, Virginia.

Players scheduled to attend include Karl Alzner, Nicklas Backstrom, Jay Beagle, Troy Brouwer, John Carlson, Jack Hillen, Matt Niskanen, Brooks Orpik, Justin Peters, Aaron Volpatti, and Joel Ward. They will will be posing with their own dogs. Braden Holtby, Michael Latta, Alex Ovechkin and Tom Wilson will be photographed with shelter dogs and puppies.

We’ll be updating this article all day with photos. It should be a blast.

Continue Reading

brooks-orpik-washington-shirt

I’m always looking for reasons to fall in love with this team. One email in particular gave me fuzzy feelings this week.

Marissa R. took her son and his friend to Kettler Capitals Iceplex to watch a morning skate. Afterwards, they ran into new Caps Brooks Orpik and Matt Niskanen.

It was a notable experience for a few reasons, but look at what Orpik is wearing. Someone’s been shopping.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

joel-ward-chimera-laugh

After the Capitals were defeated by the Sharks, head coach Barry Trotz switched up his forward lines for Thursday night. Eric Fehr, the one true love of hockey bloggers, was moved off the first line and reunited with forever linemates Jason Chimera and Joel Ward. It paid off with a 6-2 win. The new third trio was Washington’s best all night.

It looked as if they weren’t going to come away with anything to show for it against the Devils, but that’s when Cory Schineder capped off his awful night with a gift.

Continue Reading

Tagged with:
 

All Three Caps Swedes Scored Tonight (GIF)

all-swede-goals

The Washington Capitals destroyed the New Jersey Devils 6-2 on Thursday, and they owe half of those goals to a country “where the moose is king, Pippi Longstocking is a hero and innovation rules.” ALL THREE SWEDES SCOARED. That’s worth a fancy photoshop and some fancy GIFs, amirite?

Continue Reading