Friday, December 5, 2008

Post-Game: Capitals vs Islanders

Primary scoring? Check. Secondary scoring? Check. Converting on the power play? Check. Solid goal tending? Check. Another tally in the win column? Check.

The Capitals came out with tremendous energy, and scored three times in the third to hold off the New York Islanders, and improved to 10-1-1 at home.
  • Alex Ovechkin gave the Capitals a lead 9 minutes into the first period while on the power play. As he corralled the puck near the face-off circle, there were no defenders within 5 feet of him--I said to myself "Goal"--and OV took his time and rocketed a shot that seem liked it went right through Islander goalie, Joey MacDonald.
  • Donald Brashear scored his first marker on the year, with the primary assist going to Karl Alzner. Alz decided to avoid getting his shot blocked, and shot the puck wide on purpose. The puck bounced right to Brash, who knocked it in before losing his balance attempting to celebrate. It was Alzner's first career point.
  • Viktor Kozlov tipped in a Bryan Helmer slap shot to increase the Capitals lead to 2-0 in the first. Koz now has goals in two straight and 3 of his 5 goals have come against his former teams (NYI, FLA, and NJD).
  • The Islanders looked as though they had tied the game at 2 on a fluke goal, but after further review, a puck cannot be scored off an official.
  • It's good to see Eric Fehr scoring goals. Drafted 18th overall in 2003, Fehr is running out of time to prove himself, so he should make the most of his playing time while the regulars are nursing injuries.
  • I want to like Sami Lepisto...I really do. But he has struggled mightily this season. Last night he had trouble starting the breakout, and coughed up the puck in the defensive zone that led to an Islander goal. I'm hoping to see him play live and analyze him...when I go to the Hershey Bears game tomorrow.
  • On the other hand, I loved Keith Aucoin last night. He was a little (5'9") ball of energy out there. He struggled in the face-off circle, 2/6, but I'll let it slide. He was throwing his weight around and left everything on the ice, playing as if he had something to prove.
  • Finally, Ovechkin (11 shots on goal) showed maturity and selflessness when he passed to Nicklas Backstrom on Washington's empty net goal with 50 seconds left. AO could have scored, but he made the easier play, and Backstrom shot the puck into the empty net. Backstrom has 24 points in 26 games and is on track for his first 20 goal season of his career.
I almost forgot to mention that the Capitals took 47 shots! Brooks Laich had six and Matt Bradley added five, but Ovechkin led all Capitals with 11 shots. OV's career high is 15, which he had against Carolina in his sophomore season.

No comments: