Thursday, February 5, 2009

Fury held back - Kings 5, Caps 4

When your scoresheet has goals from Semin, Green, and Ovechkin, you probably expect to win. Only that didn't happen as Jonathon Quick and the Kings once again humbled the Capitals.

The Capitals got off to a very quick start, 15 seconds quick, with a goal from Alexander Semin, but everything went downhill from there. The Capitals were sluggish, didn't follow through on checks and once again were outworked by the Kings.

Sounds a bit like a certain 5-2 loss I mentioned before, right?

The offense just didn't seem to be clicking at times as passes were intercepted and sometimes sent toward open ice without a Cap in sight. The Capitals were outshot in the first and second period 12-9 and 18-14 respectively, before finally taking command in the third period with a 22-5 margin.

When the Capitals finally seemed to care, the game was 4-2 and, while it's not beyond the Capitals to mount an incredible comeback, it's more that they really didn't deserve one.

Some points of discussion
  • Alex Ovechkin scored his 200th career goal against a team he had not scored against in his NHL career. He lead the team in shots with 9. Once again, Alex Ovechkin scores in the third period, which makes you wonder, how do you convince him every period is the third?
  • I'm really getting sick of Alex Semin's behind-the-back and between-the-legs passes. They are just way too cute and to use them late in the game spells trouble. Russian hockey may be beautiful, but I'd rather play smart hockey when you're down by two.
  • Eric Fehr didn't really stand out on the line with Ovechkin and Fedorov, but I think that's more because late into the game Boudreau had Backstrom, Semin and Ovechkin out together. Tough game for Fehr to make his "big break," when the team around him gets into a ditch and is forced to change the game plan.
  • Mike Green continues to be impressive on offense, but Brooks Laich deserves the credit. He's been screening goalies and standing in front of the net for the past few games, and it's been a huge help. He's got back-to-back games with goals as a result.
  • David Steckel's tripping call was inexcusable. This is the second game in a row he's taken a stick penalty in the offensive zone. Don't worry, Steckel was more than aware of how dumb the penalty was; you could even see him jerk his head back as if to say "s***", but what's even worse is Shoane Morrisson's delay-of-game call. I just don't understand why our defensemen can't seem to keep the puck from going over the glass, and this is becoming a recurring problem as of late.
  • This loss was pretty tough considering the talent difference between both teams, but what's even tougher is hearing Brent Johnson will go ahead with surgery. Here's to a speedy recovery, Brent.
  • Speaking of backup goalies, that makes Michal Neuvirth the Capitals backup goalie at the moment. Simeon Varlamov is injured and Daren Machesney is the Bears current starter. There's much speculation out there about how the Capitals will handle Johnson's surgery but don't bank on anything yet until we know how long he will be out. Sounds like if it's minor he'd be back by late March.

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