Photo credit: Bruce Bennett

With eight games left in the regular season and the Capitals struggling to hold onto the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, every standings point matters. So when the Caps were unable to break a 1-1 tie with the Flyers after 60 minutes of regulation and a five-minute overtime, the shootout carried high stakes.

Enter Matt Hendricks.

Dale Hunter selected Hendy as the Capitals first shooter. The Blaine, Minnesota native did not disappoint. Hendricks used his patented move, this time baiting Ilya Bryzgalov to pokecheck. Bryz missed, allowing yet another highlight-reel shootout goal for the team’s leader in penalty minutes. Video is below the jump.

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The Hunger Games: Flyers beat Caps 2-1 (SO)

Photo credit: Bruce Bennett

The final game of the Washington Capitals’ ginormous road trip was a Thursday night date with the pylon-clad Philadelphia Flyers. Just like last game, the Caps came out hard, but faced a much more composed foe.

Alex Ovechkin was in hurry, scoring in the game’s first minute. Claude Giroux converted a breakaway in the second. Overtime came and went.  A coin was flipped, and the Caps lost. Flyers beat Caps 2-1 (shootout).

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Philadelphia Flyers Pregame: Bolshy Bratchny Flyers

Here’s Doug Johnson of the Puck Buddys with a spot of the ol’ superviolence. Pull up a chair at the milk bar and follow the Buddys on Twitter.

Here’s The Choodesny Pregamey: Viddy viddy, me droogies! Wellity wellity wellity well. A dorogoy game we face then, contra the Chepooka Flyers, is it? And in their gloopy domy on top, is it? Capsity-wapts fans, prepare to creetch yer yarbles biddy biddy well, and poddy thisity this: me droogs are well placed to land the tolchuks to the gulliwats and gullivers of any groody Flyer that skates with us.

To all the horrowshow krovvy to flow!

And Now Back To Sanity: So we – as in PuckBuddyCraig – were struck this morning, amid the fog and shadows, to invoke St. Stanley Kubrick and “A Clockwork Orange” for this pregame. ‘Cause, you know… orange. Flyers. Uh-huh.

So a dorogoy post – and game – it is. And yet, there may be wisdom here. O my brothers, cutter this well…

“But enough of words, actions speak louder than. Action now. Observe all.”

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Photo credit: Nick Wass

With fewer than 20 games left, the Washington Capitals badly needed a win from the Philadelphia Flyers to stay competitive. This Sunday night rendezvous held pretty high stakes for the Caps, and the team responded with a distinguished effort. But effort ain’t goals.

After a scoreless first period, Eric Wellwood redirected an outside shot from Pavel Kubina to make it 1-0. That’s the whole story. Flyers beat Caps 1-0.

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Photo credit: Nick Wass

Early in the first period of the Flyers-Capitals game, Troy Brouwer delivered a hard (but clean) hit on Philly’s Erik Gustafsson. Gustafsson crashed into the door to the Caps bench and forced it open, which Scott Hartnell considered ungentlemanly.

Hartnell challenged Brouwer to a fight at 5:33 of the first. They spent a long moment duking up, staring each other down, and adjusting their carrot-y curls (that last one does not apply to Troy).

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Philadelphia Flyers Pregame: Who Got Game?

Ed. note: Here comes your Puck Buddys pregame! Check out their lovely website and delightful twitter thing.

This is a test. This website is conducting a test of the Emergency Capitals Broadcasting System. This is only a test. 

The Pregame: Crazy… you know crazy? Not like “dingo ate my baby” crazy, or “I love Dan Snyder” crazy, but like, Groundhog Day crazy? As in: not only have I seen all this before, but I recall the precise taste of last week’s warm beer and bitter defeat? And why am I tasting it again? Am I at the Mystery Spot?

You have good reason. Here we are, thinking back to Friday’s collapsing defeat on the tail of a hot performance or two (or three), wondering what went wrong, how it could have happened, and what encouragement we might have to offer. Alan May: help us!

And suddenly we’re seized with deja vu; worse, even – not that we think we’ve sorta kinda been here before, but that we’ve been exactly completely here before, several times, right down to Alan May tossing us the lifeline of straight talk, to have it fall on plugged ears.

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Trade: Pavel Kubina to Philadelphia


Photo credit: Elsa Allen

According to TSN, Pavel Kubina has been traded from the Tampa Bay Lightning to the Philadelpha Flyers for a second and a fourth-round draft pick. The club has made it no secret that he was on the block, keeping veteran defenseman Kubina off the ice this week for multiple games, including the game played against the Capitals tonight while they looked for a buyer.

Kubina has a cap hit of $3,850,000 and was likely acquired to shore up Philadelphia’s defense with key player Chris Pronger out of the lineup long-term with a concussion. Philadelphia has already acquired defenseman Nicklas Grossman from the Dallas Stars this week but that didn’t seem to stop them from making a bid for Kubina; we assume this is because your average defenseman is worth about one half of a Chris Pronger.

Video: 2012 Winter Classic Time Lapse

Late on Monday, the NHL released a pretty sweet time lapse video of the Winter Classic ice rink being built at Citizens Bank Park and concludes with 46,967 people filing out of the stands at the end of yesterday’s game, a thrilling 3-2 Rangers’ victory. Now just imagine this in 2014– maybe at FedEx Field or Nationals Park (or even Camden Yards!).

Lessons in Humility: Flyers beat Caps 5-1

Greg Fiume

Photo credit: Greg Fiume

One morning during high school, I dressed up like the Devil for Halloween and then got roughed up by a tough guy. I remember cowering on the floor of the hallway, dressed up like an idiot. With our site all decked out in Jaromir Jagr flamebait, I feel the same way.

The Philadelphia Flyers taught the Washington Capitals humility and shame in a 5-1 mauling. All that bravado and confidence from two wins in a row? Evaporated. Flyers beat Caps 5-1.

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Warm Tidings to the Honourable Gentleman, Jaromir Jagr

Tuesday night is a big deal. For the first time since February 10, 2008, Jaromir Jagr will play hockey at Verizon Center. Since he is perhaps the most reviled person in Washington Capitals history, there’s no way this doesn’t get ugly.

As a Pittsburgh Penguin, Jaromir Jagr finished eight seasons with more than 90 points, ran flak for Mario Lemieux, and beat the hell out of the Caps in five of six playoff series. Then something even worse happened: he became a Washington Capital.

Fans can have honest disagreement about what the dark days of the Washington Capitals actually were. No wait; they can’t. That first season going a pathetic 8-67-5 doesn’t come close to unbridled misery of the Jaromir Jagr era (October 6, 2001 – January 21, 2004). It began like this: Acquired from a broke Pittsburgh team, Jagr would earn eleven million dollars a  year as a Capital.

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