For the first time in 290 days, Alex Semin, the 5th greatest goal scorer in Washington Capitals history, was back in his old barn. Now wearing visitors white, the 28-year-old forward was booed each time he touched the puck. Despite four shots on goal, Semin finished the game without a goal.
Here are my 28 favorite Semin-related photos from the night.
For those worrying Tripp would nail Semin with incisive, hard-hitting questions like “Are your shoes comfortable?“, you may now relax. Instead, Tracy tossed up softballs like “What do you think of your teammates?” and “Do you enjoy Carolina?”
Hey, you guys don’t think there was any collusion between Tracy and Carolina PR following Troy Brouwer’s unkind words, do you? Naw! Tracy probably came up with “your teammates are clearly the most important relationship to you” all on his own.
[Ed. note:Today, the latest member of the PuckBuddys team hits the ice. Jason Rogers currently hangs his hat in Virginia, has studied in Paris and worked in China (always one step ahead of Interpol). But where ever he is in the world he’s a Caps fan through and through. He knows the game and we're not holding that against him. Jason currently sports #8 – and the “C” – playing center for the Manassas Sperm Whales. Srsly. Give him a follow on twitter.]
Morning Skate: Well, Saturday’s game against the Devils sure was fun to watch, no? Alex Ovechkin bowled a Magician, and the whole team clearly ate their morning Oates with breakfast. It was a real big-boy win against the defending Eastern Conference champions for this Caps team, and like a really nice yard with an unmarked septic field, hopefully something they can build on. Today, Southeast Division rival Carolina Hurricanes blow into town like a hot, smelly belch from the South. I hope they brought illegal fireworks.
While the Caps are losing thanks to penalty and possession problems, Alex Semin (3 goals, 8 assists) is prancing around North Carolina doing unspeakably pretty things with hockey pucks.
For example, check out this gorgeous pass from Semin to Jiri Tlusty on the Canes’ way to a 4-3 loss to the Jets. In the video above, Semin makes a blind pass through Anthony Peluso’s legs to find Tlusty right at the goal mouth. Uncanny.
The Canes currently lead the Southeast Division, Alex Semin is averaging just .8 penalty minutes per game, and the Caps have a 4.5% chance of making the playoffs. On the bright side, it is 34 degrees and rainy in Raleigh today.
Hockey hugs for everybody! (Photo credit: Gary Wiepert)
On Friday night, the Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Buffalo Sabres 3-1 at First Niagara Center and one former Washington Capital had a first. Alex Semin, after starting the season with two bad penalties, scored his first goal with the Canes, one of those classic Sasha no-look wrist shots that found the top corner of the net.
The Semin signing was just one reason among many why Carolina Hurricanes fans were optimistic. After a last-place finish in the Southeast division last year, Carolina added Semin to the team’s core of Eric Staal, Jeff Skinner, and Cam Ward, and acquired Eric’s younger brother, Jordan, from the Penguins.
On Saturday, the Hurricanes — projected by many to compete for the Southeast title – got trounced 5-1 by last year’s division champions, the Florida Panthers. In 23:03 of ice-time (6:30 more than his average TOI last year), Semin had one lonely shot on goal and four penalty minutes.
In the remainder of Neuvirth’s interview with František Suchan of iSportz.Cz, the Czech goalie shares his honest opinion of pretty much every other big-name Capitals figure. He gives Alex Semin the classic “he could have been the best player in the world, but he doesn’t want to” line; he laments Alex Ovechkin‘s decline but praises his leadership; and he sheds no tears over the exit of Dale Hunter.