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A Few Random Observations: vs TBL, 10/10/11 October 11, 2011

Posted by CapitalSpirit in Uncategorized.
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  • I’m not sure if that game was one for the scrapbook, or one for the scrap heap. But I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt since we picked up two points.
  • The mark of a good team is that they win games they have no business winning. With under five minutes to go in the third, I don’t think many fans were expecting the Caps to get out of there with any points at all, and never mind two of them. The Caps’ never-say-quit attitude tonight is duly noted.
  • Tomas Vokoun is going to get a pass from me for tonight’s obvious case of debut jitters. Historically, he’s a much better goalie than what he showed tonight. That might be the ugliest W of his career, but he did earn the win, fair and square, in the shootout. Some of the goals that got past him tonight will no doubt be routine saves by February. That said, debut jitters only get you off the hook once. He needs to do better when next he takes the paint.
  • Lots of goals from the depth guys tonight. Just as well, because the stars seemed a little less bright tonight. Alex Ovechkin, you’re more than welcome to start lighting the lamp whenever you prefer.
  • Oh, the power play. OH, the power play. Oh for SEVEN, the power play. The extra-man units were clearly in early-season form tonight. If the Caps can’t make the other team pay for their cheap shots on the scoreboard, then they’d better get used to taking a lot more cheap shots. And for that matter, tonight’s game wouldn’t even have gone into OT had the Caps gotten so much as a single PPG. I’d say that they at least didn’t give up any shorthanded goals against, but that would be damning with faint praise.
  • The third and fourth line guys deserve a lot of credit for making the Bolts’ lives miserable when they were on the ice.
  • Didn’t see the disallowed goal in the second from my vantage point. There was no red light, and the ref waved it off right away. Did not hear the explanation, though–the ref’s wireless mike sounded a little bit wonky tonight.
  • Matt Hendricks is shootout gold. The man does more jukes on one shootout attempt than a month’s output at Wurlitzer.
  • Alexander Semin in Round 3, for the whole kit-caboodle? Hey, it worked, so second-guess it I won’t. Semin seems to have come back this season acting (and playing) like he’s got something to prove. His passing tonight was better than I’ve seen in the past. He still has a ways to go, though: he was a team-worst -2 on the night, and that hooking penalty he took in overtime looked like it might turn out to be the deal-breaker. It wasn’t, though, and netting the clincher (though Hendricks had the GDG) has a way of making partial amends for an otherwise average night.
  • Give the Caps all due credit for keeping the Bolts’ big names off the score sheet. Lecavalier, St. Louis, and Stamkos combined for the princely sum of zero points. ZERO. There’s something to be said for that.
  • There is a standings penalty for winning games in a shootout. The two standings points are as good as any other two standings points, but winning in a shootout hurts you on the ROW (regulation/overtime wins) tie break. That doesn’t mean much when we haven’t even gotten to Halloween yet, but down the stretch, too many shootout wins can come back to bite you if you end up tied in points. I know it’s early, and I know it’s arcane, but as of right now, the Caps would be the mathematical 5 seed in the East, although their Southeast lead gives them the 3 spot for the moment.
  • Next stop: Pittsburgh. It’s a bit early in the season, I think, to be renewing acquaintances with the tuxedoed terrors, but I’m not on the scheduling committee, so what can I say?
  • All told, it was an ugly win, but it was a win no less, so on balance, it was a good night at the office for the boys in red.

CAPITAL SPIRIT
THE CARDIAC CAPS ARE BACK IN TOWN!

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