NBC picked up Sunday’s matinee game between the Philadelphia Flyers and Washington Capitals because 1) the NFL didn’t have an early afternoon game, and 2) Caps-Flyers sounds good, or, at least, interesting.
And yet, for 40 minutes, it was anything but. But in that final period, the Capitals reminded us why they’re streaking so hard in 2017: it’s because they’re bananas for goals.
First, Andre Burakovsky ripped off his shirt, drizzled oil down his chest, and scored all by his damn self. Then, Justin Williams caught a pretty pass from Marcus Johansson and roofed it. Matt Niskanen got involved with two goals: one, a classic passing sequence from Nick and Ovi, the second, an outside slapshot that Steve Mason should have had. Feeling left out, Justin Williams scored again, chasing Mason and bringing Neuvirth to the cage.
And the Flyers couldn’t beat Caps goalie Philipp Grubauer even once!
Caps beat Flyers 5-0! Nine-game win streak! Back-to-back shutouts! Unlimited power!
The Caps haven’t lost since December 29, and they haven’t gone without a point since December 27. That was back in the salad days of 2016, when everything was simple, and the Wii U was the best Nintendo system you could get.
Now, after dropping monster teams like the Hawks, Penguins, and Blue Jackets, the Caps will today face their toughest threat yet, a team that has won 2 of its last 10 games and scratches its most interesting player, The Philadelphia Flyers.
Join me, won’t you, at 1:00 PM? Game’s at home, and CSN has the local telecast.
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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.
Over the course of the regular season, there are games that come along that you probably don’t care about very much. Some weeknight game against some team you are largely indifferent to. Well, tonight is not one of those games. Tonight we’ve got two of the top teams from the best division in hockey squaring off. On top of that, these two teams have a history of dislike that goes back decades. Tonight, my friends, is what we call a doozy. Buckle up, let’s go.
The game is at 8 pm on NBCSN. Yes, an actual rivalry on rivalry night.
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The Washington Capitals are currently on a four-game win streak and have a record of 17-7-3. You might expect them to be jumping out to a mondo Metropolitan Division lead just like they did last year. But as NHL.com reported Monday morning, the Metro division cumulatively went 17-1-0 last week, and the Caps gained no ground despite their win streak. They sit in fifth place in the division despite their solid record, although they have games in hand on everyone other than the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The Philadelphia Flyers are on a nine-game win streak. The Penguins are 7-3-0 in their last ten and feature the league’s current leading goal-scorer in Sidney Crosby (20 goals in 22 games). The New York Rangers have a plus-35 goal differential, and the Blue Jackets are somehow plus-31. This is not last year’s Metro division.
The Pittsburgh Penguins’ home arena has become the “PPG Paints Arena” which will host the Washington Capitals for the season opener next Thursday. The Penguins released the new name announcement on Twitter and for some strange reason, the CSN Philadelphia channel for the Flyers thought they could throw in a super cute joke about their 13–3-1 record against the Penguins in Pittsburgh.
Jumping to the defense of the Pittsburgh Penguins is not something I feel okay doing. It’s a backwards, bizarre, dirty feeling but after reading this series of tweets, I think it’s safe to assume we were all thinking the same thing. “Who the hell does CSNPhilly think they are?”
Photo: Patrick Smith
The Caps are back in Philadelphia and on this lovely Sunday afternoon we’ll see if they can cash in on their 3rd opportunity to eliminate the Flyers and move on to the 2nd round to face the Pittsburgh Penguins. The effort the Caps put out on Friday was phenomenal and if they can repeat it again tonight, I have a feeling dancing will be going on in the postgame.
The stonewall that is Michal Neuvirth is still in net for the Flyers, Brooks Orpik is still hurt and I just woke up.
Game Six liveblog below.
Photo: Rob Carr
Back in D.C. for Game Five and another chance to book a ticket to the 2nd round, where the Caps would likely meet up with the Pittsburgh Penguins in a series that shouldn’t have happened until the Conference Finals, but the NHL has a stupid playoff set up. As you can tell, I am annoyed by this. However, the Caps cannot be like me and overlook Philadelphia tonight as we know the Caps tend to struggle when they’re up 3-1 in a series.
Michal Neuvirth is back in the cage for the Flyers, Brooks Orpik is still out and the French dude that boarded Orlov is back for Scott Laughton who did not travel with the team after this scary collision with the boards.
Another liveblog full of even more snark below.
The city of brotherly love, Philadelphia, has a history of less-than-brotherly behavior when it comes to sports.
Most recently, we’ve seen Philadelphia fans pelt athletes with plastic bracelets after a scary near-injury, but there have also been snowball-struck Santas, Michael Irving lying on the field with a career-ending injury while Eagles fans boo, and the constant threat of ballistic weaponized batteries.
RMNB commemorates the spirit of Philadelphia fandom in our newest t-shirt.
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
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