Over the course of a season, there are going to be nights when the Caps dominate their opponent but run into a hot goalie and lose. There are going to be games where a bounce here or a call there hands victory to the other team.
Then, there'll be nights like last night, where the Caps will hit the showers having snagged two points that they probably didn't deserve. Funny thing is, they all count the same at the end of the year, so take 'em, skate 'em and move on.
Some thoughts on the game:
- See what happens when special teams fail you? Against a good team, or really any NHL-caliber team, the Caps would have been buried last night.
- A dozen different Caps (including Brent Johnson) had points, and a half-dozen skaters had 20+ minutes of ice time. That's pretty good balance all around.
- It was good to see the team score for Johnny and get him a win when he wasn't necessarily at his best (though he did make a number of big saves late).
- Sean Collins... not good.
- Michael Nylander won 75% of his twelve draws on the night, but was one of the Caps held off the scoresheet. Like I've always said about Nylander, if he's not scoring, he's helping you in other ways. Ahem.
- Interesting night for Mike Green - one assist, one big hit, plus-three rating, five giveaways, five blocked shots.
- Brendan Witt was minus-five on the night.
- Kudos to Matt Bradley for going out there and taking on Tim Jackman as a bit of payback for the last meeting between the teams. Of course, it helps if you don't get your ass kicked when doling out said payback, but at least he tired Jackman out for a couple of minutes. That said, and despite being pointless and having a minus-one rating, Brads had a pretty good game.
- Unfortunately for Joey MacDonald, he pretty much stinks.
- Alex Semin had a B.F. game last night.... What?... Oh, "Before Fedorov."
Karl Alzner is now fifth on the team in plus/minus, and his partner Milan Jurcina continues to impress (but only as his partner). Has John Erskine or Jeff Schultz been Wally Pipped?
- Maybe they should've sent Tomas Fleischmann on a conditioning assignment before rushing him back from his injury.
- I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the great turnout in the Open Thread - 366 comments and counting. Thanks, all (and make sure to check out TRS's coverage of the game from the arena - great stuff).
So it's back home to face the Blues on Thursday night, as we seek an answer to the question: When the Caps play the kind of uninspired game they played last night (which we've seen more often than we'd like), is it a product of being on the road or of facing a weak opponent?
Elsewhere 'Round the Rinks:
When "[b]oth Chris Clark and Shaone Morrisonn have said to [Tarik] that they felt poor ice conditions contributed to their groin injuries," why haven't we seen an article like this in the WaPo?.... Vote for the Top Cap of All-Time here (where apparently the Olie Kolzig wound is still very raw; h/t Tarik).... More power rankings, with the Caps up three to sixth at Yahoo! Sports, up 17 (?!) to fourth at TSN.ca, and up two to fourth at ESPN.com.... Cap of the Day: Some dude you've never heard of.... Get the skinny (ha ha) on Ted Leonsis's latest gig here.... Funny, my dream Stanley Cup Finals matchup isn't on this list.... Beaaaaaaaaaaar Traaaaaaaaaaacks.