Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Comeback Caps Fall to Sens in OT: 5-4

For the second time in a week, the Capitals found themselves behind by their opponent by a significant margin in the opening period, resulting from a shaky performance from Jose Theodore, too many defensive gaffes in their own zone and being outhustled by a hard-charging Senators club. Yes, the boys were still without the services of Brooks Laich, Brendan Morrison, Scott Walker and Boyd Gordon, but that is no excuse for the slow starts we've seen in the last several losses. Not the kind of trend you want to see in the final games counting down to the playoffs. Tarik El Bashir of the Washington Post pretty much sums it up: "Anyone else sick overtime every other night? For those keeping score at home, tonight's 5-4 loss to the Senators marked the 10th time in the past 18 games in which the Caps went to extra time.While annoying - particularly for writers on tight deadlines - going to OT isn't the reason fans should be getting concerned. This is why: For the second straight season, the Caps are closing out the regular season with a thud instead of a bang." Yep boys, 21 shots on goal is just not cutting the mustard here....

Gabby expressed his frustration post-game as well saying that five goals against is unacceptable. HM's personal train of thought is that now is the time to start playing "playoff hockey" - regardless of who your opponent is. Atlanta will be looking to knock the boys down and don't think for a minute that the Bruins (who are fighting for every point they can get) won't come blasting in here looking to knock heads and take names. And we don't need a reminder that the Caps have to pay one more regular season visit to an always hostile Mellon Arena to face our favorite opponents next week - trust me, the ice fowl will be looking for revenge for the last time the Caps pounded them in front of their black & gold (and Easter-egg baby blue) wearing home crowd. Let's keep our fingers crossed that the boys come jumping out of the gate with a solid win over the Thrashers tomorrow night. Hockey Mom will be touring Rangers country in the Big Apple  tomorrow with the boys but will certainly be keeping on top of the score with my fancy mobile technology!

And on a more "glass half-full" note, here are some more positive notes from last night's game and around the hockey world:

  • A big Hockey Mom high-five to that atomic sparklug known as Mathieu Perreault for notching his second goal in as many games last night - fans love this kid's energy and hope to see him on the bench for awhile.
  • The goal from the two Alexes was truly a thing of beauty - that is all.
  • Speaking of Alex, Alex Semin notched his 11th multi-goal game of the year with his two markers against the Sens.
  • While Ovi's assist temporarily tied him with Henrik Sedin of the Sedin wonder twins for most points with 101, Sedin's performance in the Canucks win over the Coyotes last night added to his total of 104 to take the lead.
  • Mike Green had a great defensive night against the high-powered Sens and saw almost 32 minutes of ice time, adding even more concrete evidence to the popular opinion that he should no question be a Norris Trophy finalist. Green has 72 points and is +34 on the season. Meanwhile another name often mentioned for the honor, Duncan Keith of the Chicago Blackhawks, has been losing some ground in this area. Keith has 66 points and is +14...
  • And never say never, 21 years later the stage is set for two high school teams (now middle-aged men) to play the championship game they were robbed of so many years ago. Best of luck to both teams - this is a terrific story!

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