All the Cheap Shots from the Last Caps-Pens Game


The Washington Capitals need to beat the living bejesus out of the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight. Not only would a win push the Caps past their rivals in the standings and sweep them in their season series, a win would also send a message. Basically: We’re not putting up with your BS.

Eight days ago, Alex Ovechkin slashed Kris Letang in the ankles. Ovechkin claimed he was trying to shoot a loose puck at the net. Instead Letang fell dangerously into the end boards. Ovechkin was not whistled for a penalty and Letang left the game briefly.

The Penguins, rattled, lost focus on the two points. Instead, they spent the third period doling out cheap shots to Ovechkin and the Capitals, dispensing frontier justice rather than trying to win.

The fans followed their team’s lead. A Penguins fan poured beer on the Ovechkin and trainer Greg Smith during a stoppage in play.

The Capitals kept their eyes on the prize. They scored two goals in the third period, one from Joel Ward and an empty netter from John Carlson, to win 3-1.

I know you can’t print out GIFs and pin them to a bulletin board, but I hope the Caps remember how Pittsburgh played last week. Here’s a reminder.

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What’s Behind the Caps’ Rise in the Standings?


After Friday’s Caps’ 3-2 win over the Ducks, Adam Vingan of put out this tweet:

(If you’re not already following Adam on Twitter, please do so now.)

That’s a pretty impressive run for the Caps. Here’s each Metro team’s record from December 4 to February 6.

Team Record Points
Caps 18-5-6 42
Penguins 13-9-6 32
Islanders 15-10-1 31

A few days removed from Adam’s tweet, the Caps now sit three points behind the Islanders and two behind the Penguins. Let’s take a look, at the team level, at some of the possible underlying factors behind the Caps’ substantial gains in the standings since early December.

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Photo: @JohnCarlson74

Last night we had the pleasure of watching one of the best Super Bowls ever. The New England Patriots clinched their fourth championship after Malcolm Butler’s last-minute interception of Russell Wilson’s bizarre slant pass. As time expired, many NFL resellers shot emails to their subscribers offering official Pats championship gear.

Except FanEdge didn’t get the team right.

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Photos: Washington Caps Instagram

In random Caps celebrity news, recent call-up Steve Oleksy presented NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon with a personalized Caps jersey.

I’m not quite sure why Gordon was in in the bowels of Verizon Center this evening. Maybe it’s because the Wizards play the Spurs tonight at 7 tonight. Or maybe Alex Ovechkin is ready to take his talents to Daytona Beach and, oh great, now I’m worried.

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Photo: Brian Babineau

The Washington Capitals won the 2015 Winter Classic thanks to a last-minute Troy Brouwer goal. It felt like an important moment in Caps history and they celebrated like it was.

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Winter Classic Pregame: A Hawk-Eye’s View


It’s here, and there’s no use chirping at the other squad at this point. Except to say…we dare not say anything at the moment, actually. Other than the CSN-Chicago lady we ran into who told us how f*%#@ing cold Chicago is, we’re just not going there. That, and our contributor today actually likes DC, and so now we’re feeling like jerks to whizz all over Chicago…which is, in the end, a great city.

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The Washington Capitals released their holiday video today. The video features players from the Wizards and Caps posing, ridiculously, for Christmas cards.

Then they cut to raw footage in front of the green screen, which is great.

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Artsy. (Photo credit: Patrick McDermott)

Tom Wilson needs to play like Tom Wilson,” Capitals coach Barry Trotz said early this month. “If Tom Wilson starts to play like someone else, then he won’t be on the first line.”

It’s been over a month since the bellicose winger got promoted to top line duty. He was in full bloom on Thursday, agitating the Blue Jackets all night. His premiere moment of belligerence came midway through the second period when Wilson goaded James Wisniewski into taking four minutes of penalty time for attempting to disfigure Wilson’s face.

Wisniewski’s assault failed, his stick snapping upon contact with Wilson’s chin.

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Screen: @bitingtea

Wheel of Fortune Host and Washington Capitals season ticket holder Pat Sajak was on PTI tonight. Sajak filled in as Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser’s celebrity stat boy, filming an Oddsmaker segment in the middle of the show. And he did the damn thing while wearing a Caps jacket.


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NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and Capitals owner Ted Leonsis during an event last week in Southeast DC. (Photo credit: Chris Gordon)

It’s been 40 years since the Capitals first took the ice in the 1974-75 season. The team has been celebrating the occasion incessantly, honoring the franchise’s best players with video tributes that air every night at Verizon Center and when CSN+ doesn’t have anyone in studio for the late game.

Despite the trumpeting of their former players, the Capitals will not be hosting an alumni game prior to the 2015 Winter Classic, which heretofore had been a tradition. According to the NHL, this was a decision made by the Caps. Speaking to Capitals season ticket holders last week, Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly suggested one possible reason for the move: the League didn’t agree to a deal with Nationals Park until September.

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