Lightning beat Caps 4-3: Blurghghrhghlgh

Scott Iskowitz

Photo: Scott Iskowitz

The Washington Capitals are way better than their record shows, but it still ain’t showing up in the standings. A thrilling defeat to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night extends that patterns and tests our patience, but at least it was fun to watch.

Ryan Callahan returned from injury tonight and scored right away with a fancy redirect between his legs. The Caps tied it up when Marcus Johansson scored on a rebound off a hero effort by Alex Ovechkin.

The second period was a back-and-forth affair. Eric Fehr scored after a blistering attack (told ya so), but the Bolts tied it up with a pretty passing play punctuated by Palat. It looked like the Bolts would have the lead going into the third, but Brouwer scored off a perfect tee-up by Johansson during a late-period power play.

Jason Garrison scored off a faceoff early in the third, the deflection going off Nick Backstrom’s skates. The Caps couldn’t get it one.

Lightning beat Caps 4-3.

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Caps at Lightning Pregame: Ovi’s Gotta Score, Or Else

stamkos (1)

I don’t like the Capitals’ record so far, but I’m like cosmically certain they’re a really good team. They’ll have another chance to prove it with tonight’s match-up against the Tampa Bay Lightning, who are also a really good team. Holtby’s in net versus Ben Bishop. Tune in at 7 PM on CSN+.

(Yeah, it’s on the plus.)

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 4-3-2 54.4% 100.8 24.2% 79.4%
Tampa Bay Lightning 7-3-1 54.0% 100.0 26.2% 87.1%

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End of an Era: Bolts beat Caps 1-0 (Shootout)

Patrick McDermott

Photo: Patrick McDermott

Whimper. The Washington Capitals put in a perfunctory effort in their final game of the 2013-14 season. Hosting the Tampa Bay Lightning at home for Fan Appreciation Day, the Caps showed very little intensity in a goalless defeat.

After forty minutes, the Caps had hardly mustered just seven shots– a season lowJay Beagle was back at Alex Ovechkin‘s flank. Braden Holtby was overworked but perfect. The third line was better than everybody else. The team couldn’t reach a result in #rego or overtime, so we went to the shootout for the 21st time– a new league record.

That last paragraph could’ve applied to dozens of Caps games this season. Fitting it all happened today; just another reminder what you don’t want out of your hockey team.

To the Washington Capitals of 2013-14: I’m not mad. I’m just disappointed.

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Eric Fehr Ends the Freezeout! Caps beat Bolts 4-3

crombeen sad - Mike Carlson

Aw. Someone give Crombeen a hug. (Photo: Mike Carlson)

Brr. It’s cold in here. I said there must be some unwise line combinations in the atmosphere. Since the Caps’ last game, the entire continent froze. If you’re reading this in the tri-state, there’s a 37.3% chance (also Aaron Volpatti’s Corsi %) that the pipes in your house are about to burst. But the thaw has finally begun, and the Caps shook off this painfully extended metaphor with their first victory in thirteen days, a tightly wound win over the Bolts sans Stamkos.

Youngling Tyler Johnson scored on a breakaway early in the first, but the Caps struck back thricewise. First, Alex Ovechkin set up Eric Fehr for a sneaky one to beat Anders Lindback on the Caps’ second shot of the game. Then, Mikhail Grabovski tipped in Mike Green’s slot shot during the PP. And, before the period was out, Marcus Johansson stuffed a second powerplay goal.

In the second period B.J. Crombeen scored his first of the season to make it a one-goal game around the halfway mark.

The Bolts took control of the ice in the third, tying it up with a tricky deflection off the stick of Ondrej Palat. Eric Fehr did the hero thing with some English up front in the final minute of regulation.

Caps beat Bolts 4-3! 

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Why We Watch: Caps beat Bolts 6-5 (SO)! Alex. Ovechkin.

Patrick McDermott

Photo: Patrick McDermott

Missing one of the league’s best shooters in Steven Stamkos, the Tampa Bay Lightning might look weak to some. Their goal totals in recent games haven’t exactly been terrifying. And yet, the Bolts found a way to thoroughly exploit the Capitals in the first twenty minutes of Tuesday’s game. One individual Capitals performance was at fault for a lot of that trouble, but where one falters, another steps up. Alex Ovechkin put together one of his best games ever to hoist his team into– not just a close game– but one of the most exciting in recent history.

First, Mike Green committed a penalty and the Lightning scored. Then, Mike Green committed a penalty and the Lightning scored. Then, in a Shyamalany plot twist, Mike Green was on-ice when the Lightning scored. Holtby was like, “Sick of you, Mike,” and he peaced out; Grubauer in. Alex Ovechkin put the team on the board with an instant-score following a faceoff.

Okay, buckle up. Here we go.

Troy Brouwer proved unable, so Nick Backstrom finished off the powerplay for him. Then, Alex Ovechkin happened. After Richard Panik earned a 5-minute major for boarding Karl Alzner, the Russian machine made Tampa pay. Twice. First, he laid up a cross-ice pass from Marcus Johansson, then he took a one-timer from Green to tie the game. Hats rained down. Another three-goal second period for the Washington Capitals.

Ondrej Palat put the Bolts back up in the third, taking advantage of some observational Capitals defense, but the Caps weren’t done. With the Caps net empty, Alex Ovechkin struck again, scoring his 4th goal of the night. HIS FOURTH FOARTH GOAL OF THE NIGHT.

Overtime proved unable to decide the game, and thus:

Shootout bullets!

  • Eric Fehr scores and didn’t even crack a smile.
  • Filppula was denied.
  • The puck rolled on Ovi, who didn’t get greedy.
  • Kucherov tucked it past Grubauer.
  • Backy’s puck hit the post and bounced out.
  • Grubi pokechecked the hell out of Martin St Louis.
  • Grabo’s grab bag of tricks is deep, and he converts.
  • Teddy Purcell roofed it to keep the shootout going.
  • Troy Brouwer redeemed with a roofer!
  • Palat blocked!

Caps beat Bolts 6-5 in the shootout. EPIC COMEBACK! AND HOW ABOUT THAT ALEX OVECHKIN?!

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vinny

Photo credit: Eliot J. Schechte

Ian and I don’t feel particularly strong about the idea of signing compliance-buyout victim Vincent Lecavalier to the Capitals, but some of you guys apparently do. RMNB is a community, not just a few dudes shouting their opinions at you, so we’re turning the site over to you to make the case why Tampa Bay’s veteran center should come to DC.

For the record, Tampa GM Stevie Y bought out Lecavalier’s $7.7M per year contract, which had 7 more years on it. Vinny is 33 years old, a captain, a former Cup-winner, and a reliable .5 goal per game scorer. Pierre LeBrun reported that Lecavalier met with representatives from the Capitals on Saturday.

Many of you tied your argument for Lecavalier to the assumption that Mike Ribeiro will not be back next season. Some made the point that re-signing Ribeiro is a priority as well, and while I strongly disagree with that, we’ll talk more about that later. For now, the site is yours.

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PurcellGoal

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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Game Over Green: Caps Edge Bolts 6-5 (OT)

caps-beat-lightning

Photo credit: Patrick McDermott

Thursday night against the Hurricanes, the Washington Capitals continued their march up the Eastern Conference standings with some Ovi scoring and Brouwer yelling (what else is new) as they defeated the Carolina Hurricanes. Tonight, they looked to extend their six-game winning streak against another flailing Southeast Division team from more humid parts, the Tampa Bay Lightning. They did. It was fun ’cause the Caps scored a lot of goals, until Tampa did that too.

It started with a Brouwitzer, then a Hillen blast (just kidding), and then some Russian dude with a missing tooth. In the second it was JASON FREAKING CHIMERA, Panik for Tampa, Panik puns for people on Twitter, and a Fehr tap in. The third, as usual, was where the Caps screwed things up, with two St. Louis goals, another for Panik, and one for Purcell. However…

OVERTIME = GAME OVER GREEN.

In the end, there were wings for the people in the stands and two points for the people on the ice. Caps edge Bolts 6-5 (OT).

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Mitchell Layton

Photo credit: Mitchell Layton

The Washington Capitals continued their drive to the postseason with a convincing win over the Southeast’s beaching whale, the Tampa Bay Lightning. Despite having the league’s best scorer in Steven Stamkos and veteran talent from Martin St Louis and that other guy I don’t like, Tampa has been a wreck this season. They fired the bad guy from Casino Royale, but they did pick up a really large person to guard their net now. The Caps scored on him a lot.

Caps beat Bolts 4-2.

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Eric Fehr En Fuego: Caps beat Bolts 4-3

Scott Audette

Photo credit: Scott Audette

Happy Valentine’s Day, hockey lovers! I hate this stupid day, but I found a good way to pass the time. The Washington Capitals served the Tampa Bay Lightning to some offense-go-boom and peppered it with all the careless defense that makes Caps hockey both fun and infuriating.

Troy Brouwer executed a lovely passing sequence on the game’s opening power play, but Martin St. Louis evened the score with a series of swats at Holtby’s pads. Eric Fehr scored his second goal in as many games by going straight to the net, and then made it three with a rocket from outside in the third period. Jay Beagle reintroduced himself with the dirtiest goal ever scored by a half-human/half-hound. Teddy Purcell got one back with a zero-angle shot that probably went off a Caps skater’s boot, and Nate Thompson made it darn close with a breakaway that Holtby misread. The Caps survived a late-minute panic and earned the win.

Caps beat Lightning 4-3.

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