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Caps vs. Stars Recap: Caps Lose, Ovechkin Immortalized

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Alex Ovechkin heaved the monkey from off his back as he took his rightful place as the highest-scoring Russian player in NHL history with his 484th goal. It wasn’t enough to get the win, though, as a surely-sleepy Caps team dropped the second game of their back-to-back 3-2 to Dallas.

Here’s Thursday night’s Plus/Minus:

  • Plus: Alex Ovechkin finally did it! He scored his 484th career goal in the third period to become the highest-scoring Russian player in NHL history. A recorded message on the jumbotron from Sergei Fedorov offering congratulations was a nice touch, too. Ovechkin is not good, Caps fans. He is not great. He is one of the best ever to play, and he’s ours.
  • Minus: Losing the second game of a road-and-home back-to-back is drearily predictable, but there it is. The Caps did not look gassed, per se, but leaving the building with even 1 point would have been a nice reward for a team that worked hard these past 24 hours.

And now, this…

Ten more notes on the game:

  • Tom Wilson has reached peak mass, like a supermassive black hole of ruffianism. He barely bear-hugged a Stars player and received a roughing minor for it, a sign that his reputation has begun to preceed him.
  • A solid game from backup goalie Philipp Grubauer is always better than, you know, the alternative. He doesn’t need to be a superhero, he just needs to be competent. He was on Thursday, making more than one top-notch save. Can’t win em all.
  • This was a night for Karl Alzner to forget, God bless him and his mustache. His Possum Style defense proved ineffective on Dallas’ first goal, lying down in front of the net like a misunderstood marsupial. He also mishandled a few pucks at the other end that helped stall an already choking offense.
  • Nate Schmidt, you are just a delight. I haven’t seen such a spark plug on defense since I was an armored car mechanic.
  • Congratulations to Alex Ovechkin on scoring his 484th goal and taking his place in the pantheon of all-time NHL greats. Can’t wait to see his goofy mug immortalized in bronze.
  • The Stars’ second goal was scored by Capital-in-a-past-life Cody Eakin, who Becca H. claims is the only Star she doesn’t like but I personally don’t trust alpha centauri or the Sun.
  • TJ Oshie seems to have realized how good he is, and it is not doing positive things for his game. He got a little sloppy on Thursday, making more than one bullheaded play that you could tell he simply expected to work.
  • Congrats to Nicklas Backstrom for assisting on Ovechkin’s record-setting goal. Would you have it any other way?
  • The Dallas Stars’ jerseys are cool. Show your work.
  • This will be a night of deserved sleep and some pre-bed bingeing on Scandal for the boys in red tonight.

This was a game that the Capitals would have liked to win, but did not realistically EXPECT to win in the strictest sense. No points from this one, but a nice memory for everyone in attendance and watching from home who got to see a bit of NHL, and Capitals, history. Congrats, Alex.

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