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Instant Reaction: vs Rangers, 1/24/11 January 25, 2011

Posted by CapitalSpirit in Uncategorized.

The tying goal looked very weird;
The result was about what I feared.
I’ll be blunt: I’ve not seen
A screw job this obscene
Since last week when the show “Skins” premiered.

Put away those tomatoes! It wasn’t that bad was it?

That was not the last home game I want to remember heading into the All-Star break. The Caps have only 14 home games left in the regular season, and six of those are against the West. We’ll be seeing the Rangers back in town before it’s over, and we’ve got some Sunday tilts against the Pens and Hawks. What scares me are the two two-week road swings that the Caps are going to be taking in February and March. The Caps host the Kings in a Saturday matinee on February 12th, in the early part of what looks like a week-and-a-half divisional realignment that puts the Caps in the Pacific Division. Admittedly, that’s a joke. What’s not a joke are the mid-week nightcap games on the Left Coast. Wish the Verizon Center staff luck on 2/12, by the way: they’ll have about 4 hours to get the building changed over for basketball. After that, the Caps have 26 games remaining, with 16 of those games on the road. While I think some late-season road time will be good to help the team bond a bit more heading into April, I’m looking at the Caps’ 11-9-3 road record, comparing it to the other playoff-ranked teams in the East, and admittedly thinking, Uh-oh….

So, another close loss tonight, and another point we coulda-woulda-shoulda had. Regular season mediocrity generally does not translate into postseason superiority. That admittedly works both ways, as we found out the hard way last spring against Montreal. Still, I can’t be the only Caps fan seeing us in the middle of the playoff pack and wishing we were a spot or two higher.

We’re well-positioned, yes. But we can be better, and that is obvious. We need to do better, if for no other reason than to get fans to Believe. All of April’s annihilated ambitions are still felt by some–including me–who are a little worried about getting too emotionally invested in the team right now, lest we find ourselves in melancholy mourning over more mischance in May.

Let me just put the question plainly: is it safe for Capitals fans to Believe in this team, as they are right now? Games like tonight’s are not exactly ringing endorsements.

Finally, a public service announcement:

If you’re an NHL fan, the NHL wants to know what you think about the game. No, really, they do! Head over to NHL Fan Faceoff, click “Join”, and see if you qualify.

I’ll soon forget tonight’s game; I hope the players don’t.



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