What a satisfying weekend if you're a Caps fan. Mike Green
broke an NHL record by scoring in 8 games in a row in front of his father on dads weekend, a feat not accomplished since 1984 by the Boston Bruins Mike O'Connell
. Oh, and the Caps won 5-1 over the Tampa Bay Lightning
Michal Neuvirth started in net for the Caps, the 8th player to debut for the team this season and got his first NHL win. His glove hand is something to behold. Neuvirth stonewalled Vinnie Lecavalier with that glove and he used it often during his first NHL win. In fact, he would have had a shutout if Caps new blue liner Staffan Kronwall hadn't been credited with putting the puck into his own net. Oh, well, every win can't be perfect as much as Caps fans wish it so. It was two points on the road with Neurvirth letting in 1 shot out of 32 and garnering the 3rd star of the game. Wow, nice to see the Caps have two good goalie prospects.
The Caps traveled to the Florida Panthers for a 5:00 start today less than 24 hours after that 7:30 start against Tampa Bay. It was an U-G-L-Y game, the Caps spent 16 minutes in the penalty box, but it was a game that made Caps fans happy because Alex Ovechkin is a Capital. Not only did he score the game winner on a shot that I still can't believe went past Tomas Vokoun by using a defender as his screen again, but he ended up with a hat trick on an empty netter by clearing the puck out of the defensive zone in the last 21 seconds of the game.
Have I mentioned how much I love Alex Ovechkin? I've been watching the Washington Capitals since 1974 and it's never been nearly as entertaining as the Ovie years. He's the league leader in game winning goals because the guy wants nothing more than to win hockey games. Wow, just wow. He's unreal and I marvel at the fact that I get to watch him play night after night.
The other person from today's game that deserves mention is Jose Theodore, 3rd star of the game. I've been one of his most vocal critics, but he's played great in net lately and it's been quite a while since I've complained about him.
Bottom line....this Caps team is fun to watch. Do I think they're going to win a Stanley Cup this year? No. Their defense is far too suspect for that (and if I have to eat those words, I'll do it gladly) but I'll be thrilled if they win a series or two in the playoffs.
The Caps have a rough stretch coming up with Montreal, Flyers, Penguins, Atlanta, Avalanche for a 5 game home stand (I'll be there on Friday for the Avs game) and at the Bruins right after that.
Let's go Caps!
Labels: Alex Ovechkin, Florida Panthers, Mike Green, Tampa Bay Lightning, Washington Capitals