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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Caps vs Blue Jackets Pregame: Take Karl to #TheBank

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Fresh off a three-win road trip, the Washington Capitals have returned home… to spawn …and then to fight the Columbus Blue Jackets. At 7 PM at Verizon Center, the Caps will play host the the beat-up Blooj, the league’s most injured team by a mile.

If the Caps keep playing like they have been, they should be able to get their first four-game winning streak since April of 2013.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 13-10-4 51.1% 99.2 28.8% 76.2%
Columbus Blue Jackets 10-15-2 46.3% 98.0 23.0% 76.3%

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NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and Capitals owner Ted Leonsis during an event last week in Southeast DC. (Photo credit: Chris Gordon)

It’s been 40 years since the Capitals first took the ice in the 1974-75 season. The team has been celebrating the occasion incessantly, honoring the franchise’s best players with video tributes that air every night at Verizon Center and when CSN+ doesn’t have anyone in studio for the late game.

Despite the trumpeting of their former players, the Capitals will not be hosting an alumni game prior to the 2015 Winter Classic, which heretofore had been a tradition. According to the NHL, this was a decision made by the Caps. Speaking to Capitals season ticket holders last week, Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly suggested one possible reason for the move: the League didn’t agree to a deal with Nationals Park until September.

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Karl Alzner’s a Dad: Wife Gives Birth to Baby Girl

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You’d think he’d smile more.

Early Wednesday evening, Karl Alzner‘s wife, Mandy, gave birth to their first child, a baby girl named Stella. Born at 7:22PM, Stella Raay Alzner was announced to the world via The Washington Post’s Alex Prewitt.

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biznasty

Photo: Kevin Hoffman

Former Coyotes enforcer Paul Bissonnette, who once looked like this, opened up to Kings blog Mayor’s Manor on Wednesday about his difficult offseason. Biznasty, who The Washington Post’s Alex Prewitt reported in August was close to signing with Washington, confirms that yeah, that totally was the plan, except the Caps couldn’t find the salary space to make it happen.

Bissonnete reveals that the Caps were trying to move veteran defenseman John Erskine to make room for him.

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The Awesome Index: Loving Laich and Five Years of RMNB

Scott Audette

Photo: Scott Audette

I skipped the Awesome Index last week. There was nothing awesome going on. I tried to think of some, but then I had to wade through the internet’s putrid pools of pissypants to find any. Rather than do something insincere or making it the “awful index” for a week, I decided to take a week off. I’m glad I did. In the seven days since then, we’ve been inundated with Awesome.

The Caps are riding a three-game winning streak, all of it on the road, formerly ice cold players are denting the net, and one guy in particular is looking really good out there. And not just because he’s handsome. I’m talking about Brooks Laich, but before we get to him, we’ve got some other awesomeness to go over.

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Photo from before the game by @theunemployedmom

Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom is one of the league’s best at distributing the puck. Playing against Tampa Bay on Tuesday, Backstrom authored one of his most brilliant passes ever. Or maybe it was a redirect. I’m not even sure what to call this; it was just subtle and awesome.

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