On November 7, 2015, In Game Recap, By Chris Gordon
Photo: Geoff Burke
After six years, Sergei Fedorov no longer stands alone as the most prolific Russian goal scorer of all time. With a backhanded whack, kiss of the glove, and a one-footed body slam into the end boards, Alex Ovechkin tied his legendary former teammate with his 483rd career goal. The Great Eight did it in 476 fewer games. The fans gave Ovechkin a standing ovation for his second period tally. The Leafs scored earlier in the game, btw, but that wasn’t important for our biased and bloggy narrative.
In the third, Tom Wilson made a dumb and James Van Reimsdyk and the Leafs capitalized. It looked like the Leafs were in for a win.
But wait! In one of the most glorious moments I’ve witnessed at Verizon Center, Ovechkin, with his back to the goalie, flipped the 484th goal of his career, breaking the Fedorov’s record. It tied the game. Until it didn’t. The goal was called back on a coach’s challenge.
Nicklas Backstrom scored with the goalie pulled and less than one second left on the clock, sending the game to three-on-three overtime and then — and apparently we still do these things — to a shootout.
Some stuff happened and then OVI WON IT! That was amazing! Caps beat Leafs, 3-2 (SO).
On November 7, 2015, In Pregame, By Patrick Holden
Tonight begins a stretch of games for the Caps against relatively weak competition. But there are no easy games in the NHL, and the Maple Leafs are better than their record shows, so it’s not as if there are any gimmes on the horizon for the club. Then again, tonight’s game is a perfect example of a game in which the Caps need to take advantage of the schedule. Seize the carpe, so to speak.
The Leafs are in town, fresh off an overtime loss last night to the Red Wings. Having played last night, and then travelling to DC after, Mike Babcock’s boys likely won’t be at their freshest tonight at the Verizon Center. Time to prey on the weak.
Check your local listings for channel, as the game is on CSN+ at 7 PM.
We got a lead from Evgeny Namestnikov, who we hired as a scout for us over in Russia. He said come over to watch this young man who he liked a lot, who he coached.
The Maple Leafs hired Namestnikov, a former NHL player and father of current Tampa Bay Lightning forward Vlad, to scout for them while working as an assistant coach for Soshnikov’s Atlant. This went mostly unnoticed in North America, but Russia’s top hockey reporter Alexei Shevchenko, after confirming Namestnikov’s double affiliation, referred to situation as “awkward.”
I think what the Leafs did was an unfair practice and requires an NHL investigation regarding its legality and possibly prohibiting it in the future.
We needed this. The Capitals had a rough week, but they capped it off with a steady victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Sunday night.
Alex Ovechkin was the guy. He scored on his very first shift, using the space allowed to him by a gracious Leafs defense to shoot from the slot. He scored again in the second, snatching Brooks Orpik’s rebound to put the Caps up two.
Marcus Johansson sidled up to the scoreboard with a backdoor tap-in in the third period. Joel Ward launched an ICBM from the Caps’ side of the ice to score an empty netter with five minutes left.
Big deal, Curtis. Anyone can point at an Edmonton goalie.
The deadline isn’t until Monday afternoon, but the Washington Capitals might already be done. After acquiring Tim Gleason and Curtis Glencross, the Caps current roster might be the same one we see in the postseason. Or maybe not.
Tonight’s game, at home against the Maple Leafs, is the organization’s last chance to evaluate their players before all sales are final. 7 PM on CSN.
On January 7, 2015, In Game Recap, By Peter Hassett
Perfect picture is perfect. (Photo: Graig Abel)
Setting the scene: One of the world’s best scorers in a foreign country on a team that has consistently failed to meet sky-high expectations. After hitting rock bottom in puck possession under their disastrous former coach, they’ve got renewed hopes.
I honestly forget what team I was writing about there, but here’s my recap of Wednesday’s Caps-Leafs game.
The Caps struck first as Evgeny Kuznetsov carved the Toronto defense to set up Marcus Johansson.
The Leafs returned fire in the second period with a tip-in goal by Daniel Winnik. Eric Fehr got a shorthanded goal with the help of Jay Beagle to put the Caps back in the lead, then Brooks Laich scored off an offensive-zone faceoff to make it 3-1. Toronto responded with a rebound goal by Trevor Smith, but Marcus Johansson got his second of the night a couple minutes later.
In the third, Eric Fehr got his second of the night as well. I haven’t seen Bernier stunned like that since the time someone asked him who Nelson Mandela was. Alex Ovechkin got the empty-netter and that was that.
For once, it’s not our team that’s the hot wreck. The Capitals, with their stable coach and winning record and improving possession, traveled to Toronto last night in anticipation of tonight’s game against the Maple Leafs, who just fired coach Randy Carlyle and are currently in the process of deciding whether or not they should maybe eat their young.
On November 29, 2014, In Game Recap, By Peter Hassett
Pic by Ian Oland, who I am told wore pants today for the first time in a week.
I don’t wanna write about this junk.
Bad bounces and bad mistakes made the Caps’ road game against to Toronto Maple Leafs a torrid swamp of chumpswargle hockey. I made that word up.
It started innocently enough with a freak bounce of a goal by Morgan Rielly, but then Cody Franson got a sneaky shot from the outside during a Leafs power play to close out the first period.
Holtby took the net for the second and got punctured just 23 seconds in after a turnover by the Carlson-Orpik pairing. Troy Brouwer gave us a glimmer of hope with a hardworking PPG from the slot, but the Leafs answered back like .005 seconds later when freaking David freaking Carlson freaking scored. Tyler Bozak scored his second of the night on a power-play late in the second.
Justin Peters returned to the net in the third, because, why not? Tom Wilson put the biscuit in the basket, making this something less of an abject failure and more of a stupefying bummer. And then Lupul made it an abject failure again. What the heck even is this team?
Before the drop of the puck Saturday night, the Toronto Maple Leafs hosted a stirring tribute to former coach Pat Quinn. Quinn, the second-winningest coach in Leafs’ history, died Sunday night in Vancouver after a long illness. He was 71.
The manic, gum-chewing disciplinarian coached the Leafs from 1998 to 2006 and took Toronto to the playoffs every year but his last. The Leafs went to the conference finals twice during his tenure. With Mats Sundin and Curtis Joseph, the team were always contenders in the East.
“Pat was exceptional,” said Barry Trotz to CSN Washington during intermission. “He had great presence and he commanded respect.”
The Leafs pulled out all the stops for the man who both played for the team and rooted for them growing up.