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Thursday Roundup/Gamenight: Caps @ Lightning

[SeSo Open Thread]

With the second half of the season now upon us, if we're not quite down to the short strokes, we're certainly at least using our pitching wedge. When the Caps faceoff against the Lightning tonight in Tampa, it will be a matchup of the Eastern Conference's eighth- and ninth-place teams, separated in the standings by one point and one game played (the former advantage belonging to the Caps, the latter to the Bolts). How even are these teams? They have identical 11-11-1 records over their last 23 games.

A few notes on the game:
For the Caps, then, it becomes a matter of starting strong, taking advantage of a weak Tampa penalty kill on the few extra-man opportunities that they're likely to be given and getting a lot of shots at the net. Simple enough, right? Win games like this and the Caps will probably be able to keep those pitching wedges in their bags a little longer come Springtime.

Be sure to stop by the SeSo Open Thread for more analysis throughout the day, highlights of the last matchup between these two teams and to talk a little trash of your own to the Tampa faithful.

Daily Awards
  • Hart: Olli Jokinen (3G, including game-winner, +2, 5 SOG)
  • Ross: Olli Jokinen, Jozef Stumpel, Martin Gelinas (3 points each)
  • Norris: Barret Jackman (2A, +1, 1 SOG, 1 hit, 4 blocked shots)
  • Vezina: Ryan Miller (W, 34 saves on 35 shots against)
  • Richard: Olli Jokinen (3G)
  • Calder: Evgeni Malkin (G, +1, 3 SOG)
  • Aiken: Ryan Malone (0 points, -2, 0 SOG, 1 missed shot, 3 giveaways, 0 takeaways despite 26 shifts and 18:28 of ice time)