Comment dit-on, “I Hate You?”
Here’s Friday night’s Plus/Minus:
Plus: Alex Ovechkin got his 14th goal of the season, and continues to tell Father Time, nyet.
Minus: Washington got absolutely rolled in the 2nd period, and never quite recovered behind some sketchy play by Ilya Samsonov.
And now, this...
D-....did Ovechkin choose "Still D.R.E." for his goal song?— Jason Rogers (@HeyJayJRogers) November 16, 2019
Ten more notes on the game:
1. After winning in a shootout against the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night in the City of Brotherly Shoves, the Capitals got back in the win column after a brief hiatus against Arizona on Monday. The boys in red would look to keep the winning mojo a-bubblin’ against Les Habitants.
2. Between the pipes, the Russian Rookie Roughneck Ilya Samsonov would get the start for Washington. Off to a strong start to his nascent career, could the young stud keep building on his progress?
3. Some roster weirdness coming into this contest. With forwards Nic Dowd and Carl Hagelin both out with injuries, and cruelly strapped by the salary cap like some kinky BDSM business, the Capitals were forced to call up the only dude they could afford to: defenseman Tyler Lewington. But Lewington would not be called upon to play defense - instead, he would play forward for the first time since 5th grade! Which led to this odd image up in the press box.
"Playing fourth-line center, The Void!" pic.twitter.com/hBMvoW9UYe— Jason Rogers (@HeyJayJRogers) November 16, 2019
4. The first fireworks - or whatever the French word is for fireworks - came early in the second period. With Montreal transitioning on their breakout, Habs forward Jonathan Drouin forgot the first rule of hockey fight club: don’t lose track of Alex Ovechkin. Ovi flattened him like so many crêpes, and Drouin would head to the locker room before later returning.
5. But for as scoreless as the first period was, the second period was equally....score-ful? Five minutes into the middle stanza, Montreal’s Tomas Tatar forced a turnover as the Caps were sprinting out of the zone on a breakout. Tatar’s sauce found Phillip Danault alone in front of Samsonov, and he flicked it up and in to give the Habs the 1-0 lead.
6. Five minutes later, halfway through the second period, Montreal struck again. Ben Chiarot found Big Shea Weber for a positively massive one-timer that beat Samsonov dead-to-rights and extended the Canadiens lead to 2-0.
7. And just two precious, lil’ baby minutes later, Jordan Weal wheeled around the offensive zone, flipping a gentle little backhand net-ward that somehow squirted through Samonsov’s pads and in, striking the trifecta to make it 3-0 Habs.
8. But incredibly, incredibly, Montreal n’avait pas fini. In the final five minutes of the brutal middle frame, Nick Suzuki slid a pass across Washington’s crease that a well-meaning Jonas Siegenthaler accidentally tapped in for what was technically his second career NHL goal, giving Montreal a 4-0 lead after forty minutes.
9. The Capitals would mount a comeback though, like that knight from Monty Python that gets his arms and limbs cut off but keeps talking trash. On a Washington power play, Alex Ovechkin asked the entire Capital One Arena crowd collectively, “Remember me?” by blasting a vintage Ovi goal from his office to get the Caps on the board 4-1.
Ovi from his office we get one back! pic.twitter.com/dmgoEdzffo— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) November 16, 2019
10. And Sweet Summer Kuzya, aka Evgeny Kuznetsov, did his part, too, getting loose on a breakaway with four minutes left to make it 4-2 Montreal.
But when the Capitals pulled Samsonov, Montreal scored almost immediately from center ice, and the final score of this ball of wax was 5-2 Canadiens.
With forward Travis Boyd and goalie Vitek Vanecek held out from Hershey tonight, it’s fair to assume that they will be meeting the Capitals in Boston to join the team. Meaning Ilya Samsonov will likely be sent down to the Bears for salary cap reasons.
Next up for Washington is the Bruins on Saturday.