Everybody Scoar: Caps beat Devils 6-2!

Patrick McDermott

Sad Devils, happy Mojo (Photo: Patrick McDermott)

A game against the New Jersey Devils is supposed to be a subdued, low-scoring slough. Instead, the Washington Capitals came out hot, withstood an assault, and then came back even hotter. This team is really good.

Alex Ovechkin needed just half a minute to get on the scoresheet, wristing a rebounder for his fifth goal of the season. The Devils mostly owned that period thanks to two goals by youngblood Damon Severson (both heavily screened), but another newbie, Chris Brown, got one of his own for the Caps.

Marcus Johansson scored during even strength in the second period, which is baffling to me. Nick Backstrom deflected a muffin from Matt Niskanen to put the Devils in a two-goal hole early in the third. The Twins made that even deeper when Joel Ward banked a shot hard off the back boards, then off Cory Schneider’s skates, nothing but net. And then Burakovsky extended his ridiculous goal-scoring streak on the power play.

Caps beat Devils 6-2!

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holtby-save-jagr

In the first period, the Washington Capitals defense was about as holey as my fifth grade gym socks, which I should really throw out. No worries though; Braden Holtby was on the case.

The Holtbeast made his slickest save of the season, robbing future hall-of-famer Jaromir Jagr from point-blank right at the end of the period.

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ovechkin-carly

Don’t look now, but Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin has goals in three straight. Just 34 seconds into the first period, Barry Trotz’s newly configured top line paid dividends. After Troy Brouwer ripped a shot on Cory Schneider, Ovechkin snatched the tasty rebound, skated to the right circle, and wristed the shot stick-side.

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Photo: Omaha Lancers

Washington Capitals fifth-round pick Shane Gersich is off to a terrific start and has dominated the USHL so far this season. The speedy forward, who is expected to attend University of North Dakota beginning next fall, scored four goals in his last two games and now has five goals in six games overall.

RMNB has got your video.

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Caps vs Devils Pregame: New Lines, Old Jagr

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Tonight at 7 PM, the Capitals will host the New Jersey Devils at Verizon Center. The Devils are undefeated and looking pretty boss, unless you actually look at how they play, and then they’re kinda boring. The game is on CSN-DC, and you don’t need to worry about there being any conflicts with baseball because… well… yeah.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 1-0-2 48.48% 106 30.8% 91.7%
New Jersey Devils 3-0-0 41.88% 119 25% 82.4%

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On Tuesday night, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin had a normal Ovi night: he scored two goals and dangled the puck through a dude’s legs. In a new twist, he also dropped down to his knees in his first period and blocked a shot off his skate.

Ovi skated off the ice gingerly. Two seasons ago, he broke his foot on a similar play.

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oates-devils

“Cautiously optimistic” is one of those contorted bits of language that gets tossed about with abandon in Washington. DC loves bad language; the more obfuscatory and non-committal a phrase, the greater its use. Orwell called it “that mixture of vagueness and sheer incompetence,” which makes us laugh because, while Orwell was referring to official British government communications, that seems an even more apt description of the Washington Capitals at several points over the past few years.

Not so this year. The front office, the coaches, Trotz and the team all look like they’re pulling in roughly the same direction. The point is: no modifiers about it. When it comes to the Capitals, call us Optimistic. Ish.

Which brings us to tonight’s tango with the New Jersey Devils (3-0).

Traditionally, this is the point where we trade barbs about the other place we’re playing, noting what a vile and smelly pool of despair it is. But we’re talking about New Jersey here. Saying mean things about New Jersey is like yelling at a sick puppy – it takes no talent and everyone just ends up feeling awful. So let’s just say “New Jersey” and leave it at that.

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Photo: Geoff Burke

So much happened Tuesday night during the Caps/Sharks game that it was impossible to cover it all. Liam O’Brien tallied his first NHL point, the Caps came back like two different times from an impossible deficit, and terrible hockey player John Scott summoned the power of Thor to lower the boom and score his first goal since dinosaurs roamed the earth.

There was another play I loved that I didn’t get to cover. DID YOU SEE THAT ‘AND ONE’ MOVE OVI PUT ON LOGAN COUTURE??? OMGGGGGG.

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The Baltimore Orioles have been swept out of the ALCS by the Kansas City Royals. That was an unceremonious end to the team’s best season since 1997. I’m still stunned.

The Orioles had a truly magical season. They lost Matt Wieters to injury after just 26 games and Manny Machado after 82. Newly mortal but still spectacular slugger Chris Davis missed the playoffs to suspension for taking adderall without permission. And yet they found new talent in improbable places: Steve Pearce’s out-of-nowhere slugging, Nelson Cruz’s redemption tour, Zach Britton’s heavy-gravity closing, and whatever the hell you would call Ryan Flaherty and whatever the hell it is that Ryan Flaherty does.

The Orioles dominated the AL East and swept the ferocious Detroit Tigers in the ALDS. And though they were felled by the Kansas City Royals in four straight, blooper-filled, small-ball disasters, I still love the Orioles. If you love them– or Maryland at all– I’ve made some shirts that might interest you.

(If you’re not from Maryland and/or hate us for this stuff, just skip over this one! We still love you.)

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Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and Dmitry Orlov were all that Fury premier tonight. And lo and behold, they actually got to meet Brad Pitt. AND give him a custom made Caps jersey too.

How cool is this? Oh man.

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