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The Washington Capitals downed western Canada's own Winnipeg Jets in Washington 5-3 on Wednesday. Goals by all three of your three favorite Russians helped ensure the victory ahead of a defensive performance that was spotty at times. Another two points, and firewagon wins count just as much as frigid ones.
Here's Wednesday night's Plus/Minus:
- Plus: Everybody from Russia, and everybody on the second line, allowing for overlap between the two. Justin Williams scored. Evgeny Kuznetsov scored. Dmitry Orlov scored. Marcus Johansson looked strong. Good stuff, to both lots of ya.
- Minus: The fact that J.P. thinks Thanksgiving stuffing is called "dressing." Heathen.
And now, this...
Ten more notes on the game:
- The Russians on this team are just unreal. As if it weren't enough to have the greatest hockey player alive, Alex Ovechkin, a potato crop of young Russians have begun to show their stuff night in and night out. Looking at you, Evgeny Kuznetsov and Dmitry Orlov.
- Speaking of Kuznetsov, if he skated with any more ease or deftness I should think I would have to kill myself at the memory of all the times I've tripped up the stairs.
- Nate Schmidt had a beautiful assist on Nicklas Backstrom's doorstep banger (no longer just the name of a Nicki Minaj song!) and seems to have no limit to the number of new, so- polished aspects of his game that he can surprise us with.
- The Capitals' power play unit is a faschinating thing. Most penalty kill units build a diamond around the slot, and most power play units try to stretch that diamond to breaking with their passes. The Capitals unit, instead, sticks a man right in the middle of the cage, right in the heart of the slot, and dares the penalty kill to shift as far as they need to without leaving that man exposed. Brilliant, Trotz.
- Alex Ovechkin is just on fire, like a poorly-managed souffle or the internet after a GOP debate. He's now less than 15 goals away from his 500th, and that is just insane.
- "Justin Williams looks like an old movie star." - My girlfriend. Discuss.
- The fourth line, for all its Tom Wilson penalties and Michael Latta kerfuffles, is doing a great job of doing...well, its job. Big pop, big impact, high energy. The checking line looks healthy.
- Another scoreless game for T.J. Oshie, though he had some good chances and was heavily involved down low. A much better, more fundamentally sound game tonight from a young star who had been developing some bad, flashy habits.
- Washington's defense had an up-and-down game, with certain pairings leaving Holtby alone on an island and allowing defenders to waltz into the net (see: the Tyler Myers goal), and other pairings bringing good energy and decisiveness.
- Tom Wilson took another penalty tonight for general I've-Heard-About-Youism from the referees. How do you combat the tendency of your reputation to precede you?
This was a good win for the Capitals. The Lightning come to town on Friday. Have a Happy Thanksgiving, and enjoy the food!