Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Caps Attempt to Grease the Oilers

The Edmonton Oilers paid a rare visit to the Phone Booth tonight as the Caps tried to rebound from a disappointing string of losses. Though they were without the services of their sharp shooter, Ales Hemsky, the Oilers managed to net 3 goals courtesy of Steve MacIntyre, Erik Cole and Gilbert Brule by the second period to take a 3 - 0 lead. Eerily reminiscient of Friday's shut out at the hands of the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Mason jar (goalie phenom and shut out specialist Steve Mason)...

Well into the second, the lone bright spot in the Caps' favor was a magnificent goal by Tomas Fleischmann (who we're happy to report has made a full recovery from a bout of pneumonia) as he 'flashed' through two Edmonton defenders for the score. Much to the Caps' fans dismay, the Oilers' Kyle Brodziak slid a fourth puck past Jose Theodore as he was surrounded by white Oilers jerseys.

The Caps cut the deficit to 2 after Mike Green, aided by Alex Semin, scored on a power play goal - a result of Brooks Laich getting boarded by an Oilers player. Alas, the Oilers put one onto an empty net towards the end of third for a final score of 5 - 2 in favor of the visitors and a hot-handed Dwayne Roloson.

The boys made too many mistakes of the Pee-Wee hockey variety tonight - way too many giveaways to another team that they should have beat handily. And yes, Caps fans are spoiled - they are used to winning (no need to remind you sports fans that the Caps are the only winning professional sports team this year).

One can only hope that the boys weren't looking ahead to tomorrow's much anticipated contest with the hated Pittsburgh Penguins. Though the Pens are not the same team we saw battle for the Stanley Cup last season (and they just lost Ruslan Fedotenko to injury), you can bet they will come ready to play (and in Sidney Crosby's case dive like he's in the Beijing Olympics and argue with the zebras). This will be the first meeting of these two teams since Alex Semin expressed his honest opinion during an interview with a Russian interviewer that he thinks Chicago's Patrick Kane is a better overall player than Sid the Kid. Needless to say, his honesty did not go over with Crosby and pals and HM expects them to come out swinging tomorrow night in front of their home crowd.

And we all know there's no love lost between Alex Ovechkin and his fellow countryman, Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin. If there's any question about the intensity of the "dislike" between these two, check out this article from ESPN.com.

Hockey Mom has her own selfish reasons for wanting the Caps to cream those pond birds at the Igloo tomorrow - my boys have a tournament in the Burgh this weekend and I'll have to deal with all the ribbing from my Pens-loving relatives in the rare event (please win this one boys) the Caps lose.

Til the puck drops tomorrow in the chilly Igloo...

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