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Capitals 5, Lightning 2

Alex Ovechkin's goal in the first period made him the first Capital to tally 50 goals three times, and Washington earned its ninth straight victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning, 5-2.

Defenseman Mike Green scored in his third consecutive game, bagging a pair of goals to bring his season total to 27. The Caps also got some offense from unlikely places: Michael Nylander tallied for the eighth time this season and winger Matt Bradley knocked in a goal -- his first since Jan. 1.

Tarik will be back in a bit with notes, quotes and an update on Green, who headed to the locker room early after a hit from Steven Stamkos in the third.

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  March 19, 2009; 10:04 PM ET
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Next: Ovechkin Reaction


I LOVE VARLY! He's so good. ;) Once he is our #1 we will be unstoppable.

Posted by: rachel216 | March 19, 2009 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Good game. I'd like an update on Green.

Posted by: thusler | March 19, 2009 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Hope Green's okay. Varly did good - would like to see him control rebounds better, though.

Posted by: kittypawz | March 19, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Love the replays of Varly on SportsNet.

Posted by: thusler | March 19, 2009 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Take cares, Greens. And rachel216, I absolutely agree with you. Apart from Alexander Semin, I gots a man crush on Varlamov. =P Let's GOO Caps!

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 19, 2009 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Varlamov is ALWAYS so attentive in net. He has his glove up and he is just ready to pounce.

Love him.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 19, 2009 10:16 PM

Posted by: richmondphil | March 19, 2009 10:20 PM | Report abuse

I don't see how anyone could not think AO's celebration was excessive and a clear instance of showing up the opponent. If someone had done it against the Capitals, we'd be howling, and we'd be right to do so.

Posted by: capsbluelinedotcom | March 19, 2009 10:20 PM | Report abuse

haha....left..please don't use man crush and goo in the same sentence : ). varly played great and him and neuvy will be studs in the future. if green sits for a couple days i would really love to see alzner back!....please!!!!

Posted by: CapsSkins | March 19, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

I myself don't like some of his celebrations, including this one, but I don't really care. As long as he keeps potting 50 goals, he can do whatever he wants as long as there is no penalty.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 19, 2009 10:22 PM | Report abuse

i can forgive the celebration because it was peer pressure!!! blame green and semin. who cares anyway...if it was really that big of a deal, tampa would have gone after him...which they didn'

Posted by: CapsSkins | March 19, 2009 10:23 PM | Report abuse


I would agree--but it was his 50th, and "extra" celebrations should be allowed/tolerated for milestones. I agree with you 100% if that was number 34 (or any other non-milestone number).

Given that fact, I enjoyed his "show", even if Green and Backstrom hung him out to dry.

Just my 2ยข

Posted by: PaintDrinkingPete | March 19, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

1st Cap to get 3 50-goal seasons. cant compete with that.

Posted by: richmondphil | March 19, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, there should be a third option for 50 goals 3 times versus doing a show after every game. I'm sure someone will bring that up with him though so it won't happen again.

If Cherry scores 50 goals 3x then he can tell Ovi how to celebrate it

Posted by: austinsteve | March 19, 2009 10:30 PM | Report abuse

The celebration was goofy. Pure Ovechkin, and a shot at our favorite idiot in red velvet. I think it was fun, but I don't blame the other guys for booing him. Still - it is very much pure Ovechkin. And he rocks my socks!

Jeez, I hope Green's OK, though. That put a big heavy black mark on an otherwise slaughterous (is that a word? ;) game.

Varlamov looked seriously on tonight; he's going to be top-drawer when we bring him up for good. I was glad to see him get the start.

Crept up a point on the Bruins, and bounced ahead of the Devils in the points standings; can't argue with that! We're now only two games back from top of the Eastern Conference, and if the Bruins and Devils continue the direction they're going and we continue the direction we're going, that top seed is easily within reach.


I'm heading to Carolina on Saturday and looking forward to another really good game!

Posted by: irockthered | March 19, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

oh, you know all the guys who told him to do the hot stick thing and promised they'd come do it with him were either:

a. getting Ovie back for all his practical jokes

b. doing it for the sheer pleasure of watching Don Cherry completely lose it on the next "Coach's Corner"

take your pick; I think both are equally plausible.

Posted by: RedBirdie | March 19, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Ovie needs to leave the post scoring antics to his NFL friend Cooley.
The last thing we need is for Ovie to become the T.O. or that clown from the Bengals of the NHL.

Hope Green is ok.

Posted by: jotay131 | March 19, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Enough of these polls trying to stir things up already. Granted I'm not a fan of nepotism in general and a bit biased, but I'd rather enjoy a win than answer a meaningless poll. How about some important information like the status of Green?

Posted by: lornemyoung | March 19, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Not that there was any doubt, but this win locks us into a playoff spot.
A Thrashers regulation loss tomorrow completely eliminates them.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 19, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Ok, that was clearly showboating. It was preplanned. It was chad johnson on the ice. its ok as long as he does not get into the habit of it. Teemu Selanne shot his glove, but didn't make a habit of it.

Posted by: SFcapsfan | March 19, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

I do not mind exuberant celebrations, but my first feeling watching that one was embarrassment.
I suppose that means I did not like it at some level.
I think maybe because it was in front of a team I kinda of feel sorry for this year.
Now if it was in Pittsburgh...

Posted by: OldFan | March 19, 2009 10:47 PM | Report abuse

All A.O. did with that celebration was prove what Don Cherry said about him right.

Posted by: CapsNut | March 19, 2009 10:49 PM | Report abuse

OldFan, It would have been worse in Pittsburgh. They would never let him live down a "showboating" reputation.
I'm not a fan of it, if only because it was very contrived and...I guess awkward is the best word I can come up with. It was, *cocks head to the side* "What exactly is he doing?" I love his spontaneous leaps of joy and huge grins with his teammates.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 19, 2009 10:50 PM | Report abuse

although it was funny to hear joe b. and craig think he was saying "thank you" to his stick, this celebration was as unnecessary as Santana Moss cleaning his shoes against the Bengals. I tend to love that ovechkin celebrates off of adrenaline and is having fun but the preplanned stuff/using props needs to stay off the ice in this case.

however, since it was his 50th, and if this is a one time/very rare occurrence then its whatever.

Posted by: midnightrush1 | March 19, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse


technically not yet. But of course yes.

The thing I like about Varly is how quick he is to get up after a save. He made two consecutive saves that way today, was impressive.

(but don't bash Theo, he's been good too and not a scapegoat of the previous losses)

I'm hoping Green is ok.

Posted by: mauree | March 19, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

@SFcapsfan...and others

I still believe the pre-mediatated antics were the result of this being #50. For those worried about this becoming "habit"...I wouldn't mind at all if he celebrated in a goofy fashion after EVER 50th goal for the rest of his career.

Special goal = special celebration
next goal = just do your "normal" thing...and we'll love you for it.

Posted by: PaintDrinkingPete | March 19, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

mauree, According to my super math genius friends over at, very much yes.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | March 19, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: no_private_info | March 19, 2009 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Just to be clear, the score should have been 7-1. I'm sorry, but you blew it Toronto.
The obvious one is the Fehr goal, which was a goal, I saw it on my dvr before they even reviewed it. The goal judges get paid money to do a job, and if that's the best you got, lets hire monkeys and pay them in bananas (that way it won't be 300 bucks a ticket to go to caps games).
The second one was the Semin goal early in the first. Semin lifted the stick, and then shot. It was a TSN top ten play, swipe and shoot, not a penalty. Semin is light in the pants and gets mauled every time he touches the puck, and it never gets called, so lets try and fool the dumb ass hockey fans who don't know any better, and give the illusion of consistent refereeing.
Personally, I'm tired of watching the refs be this bad. Is it really that hard? If so, lets outsource those jobs to chinese kids who obviously know hockey better than Kerry Fraser. Just because you've been doing something for a long time, doesn't mean your good at it.

Posted by: bobnowell | March 20, 2009 1:00 AM | Report abuse

Wow...I read about Ovie's 'celebration' before I saw the highlight, so I was expecting some tasteless, hyper-flamboyant, over the top display. But now I'm wondering why we're even talking about it. It was tame. Completely harmless. He did it for all of about 1-1/2 seconds, then got back to business. As we should. Why are we constantly trying to create controversy where there is none?

Posted by: meahern | March 20, 2009 7:08 AM | Report abuse

I never thought Ovies celebrations were over the top. While I didn't really care for the one last night, I think it was just a pure slam at Don Cherry and his soccer comparison. I hope Ovie gets back to the simple glass slamming.

Posted by: steelhead1 | March 20, 2009 7:18 AM | Report abuse

I thought the celebration was fantastic. I love everything about this guy, and he's certainly earned the right to come up with a goofy celebration with the milestone he has reached. I would say it would be excessive to do this type of celebration after EVERY goal, but give the guy a break; it was his night to shine. Some would argue that if players on other teams were doing this we as Caps fans would be upset. I disagree with that; If Philly's Carter scored his 50th and did the "too hot to handle" shuffle with his stick, we'd most likely roll our eyes and move on. I suggest we do the same with Ovie. I can just see that vein popping out of Don Cherry's forehead now...

Posted by: thegeester | March 20, 2009 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Excellent coaching by Bruce on the time-out, even though replay came up with the wrong call. Also, a great job getting the troops to refocus after the horrible performance against Atlanta.

Let's hope Green's shoulder isn't serious and that the checking line continues to perform like they did last night.

With any luck, we'll cut down on the penalties, move the PK "box" out a step or two to create fewer screens, continue to see Federov, Kozlov, Fehr and Laich make amazing contributions and, PLEASE, someone light a fire under Fleischmann.

Backstrom is the man!

Posted by: JamysonTucker | March 20, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

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