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Photos by Chris Gordon.

Lauren Santora looked fine today. She does many days. That’s the thing with chronic illness: it’s not as much a story of acute calamities — Lauren has been hospitalized several times in her eight years — but the practicalities of everyday life. The Santoras and other families with chronically ill kids face a quiet struggle that outsiders often fail to grasp.

Some days she’s good. Some days she isn’t. Her parents have to monitor her condition constantly. Lauren has type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune condition in which autoantibodies attack the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas.

The toll of Lauren’s illness is not confined to herself. It also falls her mother, Dianna. It falls on her father, Joe. And it falls on her brother, Ryan, who also suffers from ADHD. Both siblings also have celiac disease, another autoimmune condition.

Lauren has been playing hockey since she was two-years-old. She presents herself as a articulate and joyful little girl. Every day, Lauren tries to lead a normal life. But with chronic illness, you never quite get there.

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Today was a great day at practice as the Washington Capitals granted the wish of 8-year-old Lauren Santora. Her dream was to meet Alex Ovechkin. She got that and then some.

The Norwalk, CT native, who has been playing hockey since age two, combined with the Russian machine to score the sweetest goal of her career.

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Here’s the Jay Onrait “Bobrovsky!” Ringtone

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Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 39 of 41 Caps shots on Thursday night to give his Columbus Blue Jackets a much-needed win in enemy territory. As your boy JP pointed out, the Capitals fired 18 shots on Bob during the power play alone but got rewarded for just one. It was a huge performance for the Lumbus backstop, a stolen win that deserves celebration– despite how much it hurts us as Caps fans.

And no one is better at celebrating Bobrovsky than Jay Onrait of Fox Sports 1. You’re off the case, Bobrovsky!

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Artsy. (Photo credit: Patrick McDermott)

Tom Wilson needs to play like Tom Wilson,” Capitals coach Barry Trotz said early this month. “If Tom Wilson starts to play like someone else, then he won’t be on the first line.”

It’s been over a month since the bellicose winger got promoted to top line duty. He was in full bloom on Thursday, agitating the Blue Jackets all night. His premiere moment of belligerence came midway through the second period when Wilson goaded James Wisniewski into taking four minutes of penalty time for attempting to disfigure Wilson’s face.

Wisniewski’s assault failed, his stick snapping upon contact with Wilson’s chin.

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The Washington Capitals outshot the Columbus Blue Jackets 41-23 on Thursday night, but they got just one standings point out of the game because they couldn’t convert enough power plays.

Also, Caps veteran Jason Chimera, who has struggled this season, took the dumbest interference penalty ever in overtime.

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Rob Carr

Whose goal? (Photo: Rob Carr)

The Washington Capitals dominated the Columbus Blue Jackets in the game’s opening minutes before coming up short in overtime. The Caps authored 12 of the game’s first 13 shots, including a sweet Eric Fehr deflection goal on the power play.

Except I kinda think Alex Ovechkin touched it last.

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Power-Play Pity Party: Blue Jackets beat Caps 3-2 (OT)

Patrick McDermott

This is what the Caps’ other goalie looks like. In case you forgot. (Photo: Patrick McDermott)

I don’t know what I was expecting from Thursday’s Caps-Blue Jackets game, but it wasn’t this. I didn’t expect the glut of special teams and an explosive start for the home team. The pair of goalie interference calls were the Spanish Inquisition of penalties. And while I guess I saw the Caps’ offensive doldrum coming, I didn’t expect that depressing finish. This was a weird one– and it was not particularly pretty.

A little over three minutes in, John Carlson released a point shot at the tail end of a 5v3. Eric Fehr tipped that in, though we think Alex Ovechkin might have had a piece of it. The Caps dominated much of the period, but Nick Foligno tied it up with a giftwrapped goal in the fifteenth minute. The second period went scoreless despite a four-minute power play for the Caps.

Troy Brouwer masterfully tipped in a wide cannon from Matt Niskanen midway through the third to put the Caps up, but Kevin Connauton got a weird shot from outside past Braden Holtby’s left flank to tie it just 99 seconds later. That’s how it looked at the end of rego.

Jason Chimera got sent to the Sasha box in overtime, where Nick Foligno ended it with a snazzy shot.

Lumbus beats Caps 3-2 in overtime.

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Here’s a photo of Andre Burakovsky not playing hockey. (Photo: @alex_prewitt)

Scratched for the last three games, Caps rookie center Andre Burakovsky seemed like the perfect candidate to play in the World Junior Championship and regain his confidence. Team Sweden head coach Rikard Gronborg added “Andre has clearly stated to us that he wants to participate in the tournament.”

Well, hold up. TSN’s Bob McKenzie tweeted on Thursday night that the Caps don’t plan to let Burakovsy attend the tournament. The Caps themselves say no decision has been made yet.

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Screen: @bitingtea

Wheel of Fortune Host and Washington Capitals season ticket holder Pat Sajak was on PTI tonight. Sajak filled in as Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser’s celebrity stat boy, filming an Oddsmaker segment in the middle of the show. And he did the damn thing while wearing a Caps jacket.

Awesome.

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CSN Washington’s Joe Beninati has won a swimming pool filled with Emmy statuettes for his unmatched calling of Caps games over the years. And you’re certainly well aware that he is a finely dressed man (we’ve documented every suit he’s worn over the last five years). And yes, we once had him dress our own Chris Gordon.

Our adulation of Beninati’s style has been loud and proud, but Hollywood has been slower to notice. No longer.

Earlier this week, E! Fashion Police star Giuliana Rancic (a Whitman High and American University graduate) called Joe B the best dressed play-by-play man in the NHL.

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