Caps at Panthers Pregame: Ready for Their Close-Up


GIF: We See Red

Tonight is the debut of whatever the name of the show is about the Winter Classic on EPIX. But before that, we’ve gotta watch the Capitals play visitor to the Florida Panthers, who somehow are a pretty good team this season!

The Caps haven’t lost in #rego since December 2nd, and they don’t play to start now. See you at 7:30 on CSN Plus.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 14-10-5 50.9% 99.3 26.5% 77.0%
Florida Panthers 12-8-8 51.4% 99.0 13.8% 80.8%

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Undefeated in #Rego: Caps beat Panthers 2-1 (SO)!

Patrick McDermott

Best player of the game in my book. (Photo: Patrick McDermott)

The Washington Capitals dominated the Florida Panthers at possession on Saturday, but getting the puck in the net is another matter. A couple penalties in the third penalty made this thing way more competitive than it should have been. Another game that took 65-plus minutes to decide.

Eric Fehr sent a wizardly pass to Jason Chimera, who scored the goal’s first goal with a nice backhand. Brad Boyes tied it up by swatting in a loose puck during an early third-period power play. That goal forced overtime.

The dry scrape was a bunch of nothing, so let’s do this… ugh… again.

Shootout bullets!

  • Kuznetsov put the biscuit in the basket
  • Huberdeau put the biscuit in the basket
  • Backstrom put the biscuit in the basket
  • Jokinen did NOT put the biscuit
  • Ovi put the biscuit in the basket

Caps beat Panthers 2-1 (shootout)!

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Caps vs Panthers Pregame: Peters, Panthers, Puppies

I am a puddle. (Photo: Capitals)

The Capitals will wrap up their three-game homestand tonight at 7 PM by showing the Florida Panthers what a packed hockey arena looks like. Tune in to CSN-DC and get ready to welcome Justin Peters, scheduled to make his first start in net.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 2-0-2 51.40% 104.2 27.8% 93.3%
Florida Panthers 1-2-1 54.67% 97.8 5.6% 72.7%

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Photo: J Pat Carter

I forget how to recap. I don’t know what the numbers on the back of the jerseys mean, and all the players look giants playing on a snack-size rink. I forgot how to get to all the stats reports. Everything looks weird to me. I’m gonna do my best, but go easy on me.

The Washington Capitals returned from their Olympic break down in sunny Sunrise, Florida. The Panthers, mainstays of the league’s bottom-5, were supposed to be the right team to face in this first game back. The Caps pulled out an early lead, promptly blew it (as they do), and then got another one, then blew that one.

Here’s how it went.

Troy Brouwer stuck first, owning a scramble in the slot to record a power play goal. Brooks Laich followed up, finishing off a nifty pass from Alex Ovechkin to make it 2-0. Hey, look at that: a two-goal lead. Sweet. Everybody relax.

Then Tomas Fleischmann caught a pass Jesse Winchester to make it 1-0 and Brad Boyes scored from the slot early in the second to tie it up. Two-goal lead, we hardly knew ye.

Nick Backstrom scored later in the second period, a layup that even a total allergy-med junkie could have hit. Troy Brouwer got his second PPG of the night, winning another fight in the paint off of Alex Ovechkin’s rebound.

A powerplay goal by Jimmy Hayes and a clustereff clean-up by Brad Boyes midway through the third made it a tie-game– erasing the Caps’ second two-goal lead. Mike Green blew the best breakaway chance ever, but Captain Alex Ovechin scored the game-winner, his 41st, on the very next shift.

Caps beat Panthers 5-4! Oh hurrah. They beat the Panthers.

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Grubi Great but Panthers beat Caps 3-2 (SO)

Grubi - Eliot J. Schechter

Photo: Eliot J. Schechter

Friday night’s game between the Florida Panthers and Washington Capitals could have been an exciting reunion of two former division rivals. Instead, the Capitals put up an uneven effort, and relied on special teams to keep up with a Florida team that was curiously strong on the puck. Grubauer kept the Caps alive despite a lot of action, earning the team a point in sixty-five minutes, but not the decision.

Scoreless through twenty,  Dylan Olsen (who?) finally hit the back of the net after unlimited zone time for the Cats. Nick Backstrom tied the game during 4v4, but– wait for it– Florida scored soon after thanks to a bad Mike Green turnover and bad Mike Green D coverage. Joel Ward crushed the nut to re-tie the game late in the second, though that one required video review.

The third was pointless, so everybody got a pity point and we headed into OT, but that never does anything, so…. again…

Shootout bullets!

  • Fehr converted a nice wrister
  • Barkov looked like a jerk and got swept away
  • Ovi hardly got a shot off
  • Huberdeau had a long reach and beat Grubi
  • Backstrom fumbled it, then did the exact same move as Huberdeau
  • Grubi got a piece of Boyes, but didn’t stop it
  • GraboGraboGraboGraboGraboGrabo five-hole
  • Bjugstad had speed and stopped on a dime to put it in
  • Brouwer rang post
  • Kulikov rang post because why not
  • Erat refused on a sly move
  • Flash’s shot no match for Grubi’s stick
  • Johansson had some weird moves and an unconvincing backhand
  • Upshall rejected on the wide backhand attempt
  • Orlov pokechecked– yikes
  • Hayes also sent back because no one can score anymoire
  • Ward’s shot got blocked a giant bald head or something, maybe just a weird camera angle
  • Goc missed or something I dunno I am kind of blacking out at this point
  • Chimera– and I’m just guessing here– is not gonna score, nope he does not, typical
  • Kopecky wins it thank goodness at this point I’m ready to be done

Panthers beat Caps 3-2 in the Shootout.

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Bjugstad and Schmidt (right) bump fists before the 2012 West regional semifinal (Photo credit: Sherri LaRose-Chiglo/St. Paul Pioneer Press)

After the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers were upset by Yale during last spring’s regional semifinal, a few of Minnesota’s star players left the program to pursue professional careers.

Among them were defenseman Nate Schmidt, who signed with the Washington Capitals as an undrafted free agent, and Florida Panthers’ 2010 first-round pick center Nick Bjugstad. Both spent three years in college hockey, and both were all-stars in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

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Neuvy in Net: Caps beat Panthers 3-2 (SO)

backy boered Greg Fiume

The most excitable man in hockey. (Photo: Greg Fiume)

The horse show or whatever is gone from Verizon Center, and the Caps are finally back. Good thing too. Friday night’s curbstomp in Philly got really ugly at the end there, and the handsome faces of DC made things all better.

Nick Backstrom scored the game’s first goal in a low-shooting first period, which is pretty much exactly how last game started. Florida’s Jesse Winchester scored on a breakaway in the second, but John Carlson answered back 36 seconds later thanks a lovely saucer pass from Michael Latta. Tomas Fleischmann tied it on a 4v3 with under 3 minutes left because ugh. Into OT we came, and into the shootout we went.

Shootout bullets!

  • Grabo with the greatest move of all time
  • Barkov did the same thing
  • Laich like salmon in the back of the net

Caps beat Panthers 3-2 in the shootout!

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Tie Game. (Photo credit: Greg Fiume)

The Washington Capitals were leading the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-1 on Saturday night. They ended up winning 6-5 despite a pathetic third period collapse. Afterwards, the players were understandably upset, none moreso than Jason Chimera.

In response to an earnest question about how to mentally handle a late game blow up, Chimera got sassy.

“Sometimes you’re not your best at writing articles,” he said. “You gotta do better next game.”

After a quick back-and-forth, Chimera stormed off to the showers at Verizon Center. Ah, the joys of a winning locker room.

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Caps Just Freaking Destroy Panthers 7-1

greg fiume

Photo credit: Greg Fiume

The Washington Capitals just freaking obliterated the Florida Panthers. I don’t know how else to say it. Any flowery language would make the point less elegant: this was a thrashing. One of these teams is the bottom of the Eastern Conference, the other one is the Washington Capitals.

We learned that early, as John Erskine’s muffinly dump-in baffled Jacob Markstrom. We were reminded soon after– when Wojtek Wolski caught a Steve Oleksy pass and made it 2-0 on the Caps’ second shot. That was enough for Markstrom, who got the hook in favor of Scott Clemmensen, who promptly gave up two more goals on the Caps’ next four shots– one from Carlson, one from Ribeiro.

That was all in the game’s first 10 minutes. I could go on, but you get the idea. This was all Caps. Even when the shooting slowed, Braden Holtby was so on top of his game that this was never really a contest.

Caps beat Panthers 7-1.

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That Air-Humping Florida Panthers Fan

As regulation time expired in Tuesday’s Caps-Panthers game, one right honorable gentleman cheered the proceedings with impassioned, airborne pelvic thrusts. Start at the 12-second mark in the video above to see what I mean; the guy is at the top right.

All the air in Sunrise is now pregnant as this guy– despite the pleadings of his attendant and well-adjusted girlfriend– made ballistic and metaphorical love to anything and everything around him.

Seeing as the BB&T Center was chock full of about 120 fans, Airhump McGee here becomes the de facto Coors Light Fan of the Game. Drink Coors Light: The Silver Bullet! Taste the Rockies, Especially if You’re a Total Florida Dudebro.

Thanks to Andrew S. for the heads up!