Washington Capitals defenseman Karl Alzner became the first player in franchise history to play in 500-consecutive games, Friday night against Chicago. He also became the third defenseman since 1944 to do so.
And on a night where Braden Holtby and Jay Beagle starred in a 6-0 thrashing of the Blackhawks, it was Alzner, despite having only one shot on goal in 19:59 of ice time, who was the team’s first star.
The Washington Capitals won their eighth-straight game Friday night. Not only did the 6-0 victory vault Braden Holtby to the top of the shutouts leaderboard, it also pushed the Caps to first place in the Metropolitan Divsion and the entire NHL.
The Chicago Blackhawks have won the Stanley Cup twice over the last four seasons (2012-13 and 2014-15). They are always at the top of the league. And they feature three of the best players in the league: Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, and Duncan Keith. That’s why when you beat the Hawks, it’s a big deal.
That’s why Friday’s result was such a surprise. The Caps, using their blistering team speed in the neutral zone, put up a touchdown against the Central Division’s best team.
Let’s review all the goals.
The Washington Capitals defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 6-0 Friday, extending their mondo win streak to eight games. A big reason for that has been Braden Holtby.
The Washington Capitals disposed of the Chicago Blackhawks in spectacular fashion. Production throughout the lineup, Braden Holtby being even better than he was last year, Barry Trotz’ shining bald head. Eight wins in a row. Everything is good in DC….for now.
Jay Beagle, as he is wont to do against the Blackhawks, sparked an incredibly dominant first period for the Caps with a slick wrister that went five-hole on Corey Crawford to give his boys a 1-0 lead. Nicklas Backstrom would follow suit only thirteen seconds later after some nifty passing to make it 2-0 and Brett Connolly would do some former first round pick stuff and all of the sudden it was 3-0 after 20 minutes.
The Blackhawks would respond well in the second with a Vince Hinostroza goal to make it 3-1. SIKE! Marian Hossa interfered with Braden Holtby and you cant do that. Nate Schmidt would do cinnamon-bun things and feed Tom Wilson to make it 4-0 after 40 minutes.
TJ Oshie would add a 5th in the third and Beagle would score his second of the night to send us to Enrique-land.
Caps beat Blackhawks 6-0!
Tom Wilson scored his third goal of the season, but it happened because of Nate Schmidt’s stick–to–itiveness.
By playing a shift in Friday’s matchup with the Chicago Blackhawks, Karl Alzner became the third defenseman since 1944 to play in 500-straight games. Considering how physical hockey is and how demanding an 82-game schedule can be, this is an impressive milestone. And the congratulations have been pouring in.
Baseball Hall of Famer and owner of the longest consecutive games streak, Cal Ripken, Jr., congratulated Karl in a tribute video made by the team.
Cincinnati-based RMNB reader, Joshua R., traveled to Washington DC this weekend to see the Caps’ two games at Verizon Center. And he brought along a wonderful sign. Cutting out three of RMNB’s signature beagle.jpg’s, Joshua created a scene of hockey-playing beagles with headline text that read Believe in Beagle.
Joshua Believed in Beagle, and Human Jay Beagle must have felt that love. 6:04 into the first period, Beags scored, giving the Caps a 1-0 lead.
Some inclement weather which is about to bear down on the Kansas City area has led the NFL to change the starting time for the divisional-round playoff game between the Chiefs and Pittsburgh Steelers. The game at Arrowhead Stadium was supposed to begin at 1:05 pm on Sunday, but now it will air at 8:20 pm. ET.
Because of this change, NBC needed something to fill the time slot. So the start of the Caps-Flyers game will move from 12:30pm to 1pm and it will be broadcast on national TV. This will be the second time in three games the Caps will have a national audience. Wednesday night, the Caps-Pens game was featured on NBCSN as part of Rivalry Night.
On January 7th, Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom recorded his 500th NHL assist vs. the Ottawa Senators. This Sunday, January 15th, prior to the game against the Philadelphia Flyers, Backstrom will be honored by the Caps organization for reaching that milestone. Only 139 players in NHL history have reached the 500-assist mark.
According to the team, he will be receiving a special gift as part of the ceremony. Backstrom is the first Capitals player to ever tally 500 assists. He currently ranks first all-time in the organization in assists, as well as third in the NHL in assists since he entered the league in 2007.
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