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Posted at 6:13 AM ET, 02/17/2011

Stat of the night from the Capitals' 7-6 win over the Ducks

By Katie Carrera
Morning Roundup

Two: The number of goals Alexander Semin had on the road this season prior to the three he scored in Washington's 7-6 win over Anaheim last night, when he tallied his fourth hat trick of the season.

Semin was in mired in a long, largely injury-induced slump over the past several months. In his fourth game back after missing 12 with a groin muscle injury, the Capitals' enigmatic winger scored his first goal since Nov. 28. Granted, Semin only played 17 of those 33 games Washington played without a tally from their third-biggest star among the forwards, but it's a welcome sight for the Capitals to see him score.

"It's good to see him score because he's a huge part of us moving forward," Mike Knuble said. "We're going to need him to score a lot of goals and he'll be a big part coming down the way."

Said Matt Hendricks: "He's a very skilled individual and he can make things happen. It was nice to see. I know he's happy about it because he worked hard. He wants to score goals and he got them tonight."

--If you missed it, check out the recap from last night's barn burner in which 11 different players scored goals and 20 added points as the Capitals broke their three-game losing streak.

--Meanwhile, the NHL's trade deadline at 3 p.m. on Feb. 28 is rapidly approaching and the Capitals are looking for the same thing they needed at the start of training camp: a proven, two-way second-line center.

--ESPN's dynamic duo of Scott Burnside and Pierre LeBrun discuss the price of a rental player at the trade deadline.

--Capitals majority owner Ted Leonsis discussed the adversity facing the team on his blog, Ted's Take, yesterday.

--Ever wonder who constructs NHL teams? The Hockey News' Tom Thompson answers.

By Katie Carrera  | February 17, 2011; 6:13 AM ET
Categories:  Alexander Semin, Morning Roundup  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Open thread: Capitals at Ducks
Next: Matt Hendricks, Bruce Boudreau react to Sutton's hit and John Erskine's defense of a teammate

Comments

Great to get the win but like all of us who saw the game, our D and goaltending was depressing. We cannot play this run and gun style and expect wins. We just happened to be in the lead when time ran out. My gut feeling says we will not have a solid 60 mins against SJ. Not being pessimistic but again, just my gut feeling.

Posted by: BernieWolfeFan | February 17, 2011 7:14 AM | Report abuse

It was an off game for all the goaltenders last night - the flow of the game was different too...

Its getting to be the time of year that BB will begin to ride one of those 2 goaltenders for most of the games left - so who will it be Neuvirth or Varlamov?

My 3 cents worth: Neuvirth is steadier and better when he plays just about every day. Varlamov is dominant/great for a game or two after he sits.

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | February 17, 2011 7:20 AM | Report abuse

Ah aleady our first we need to play better D of the thread. When we were everyone was complaining about us not scoring.

You want to know the real stat of the night? It is 71.4. That was the two goalies combined save percentage. Blame the D all you want the goalies have to make some saves at some point. I know Neuvy was thrown in and gets a breakaway against him early but he didn't even move until the puck was in the net. To be honest none of the three goals he gave up were very good goals. And Varly let in two from the point. There may have been screens/tips in front of him but he needs to make saves on the shots from the points.

Posted by: icehammer97 | February 17, 2011 7:36 AM | Report abuse

Dang, I missed Semins Hat trick. Fell asleep right at the start of the third period. Darn west coast trip.

Posted by: washingtoncapitals | February 17, 2011 7:41 AM | Report abuse

@icehammer

I am not worried about the D...they have been solid for months now and are going to have bad games on ocassion. Your right though...we only allowed 21 SOGs...the D couldn't have been THAT bad. I also saw some weird bounces (both ways)

Green may get a lot of criticism, but it is always notieable when he's out...and then of course we loose ERskine in the 2nd and are left with 5 D men....one of whom is Sloan.

As for goalies...I don't know which one to ride...Varly has had bad rebound control lately...thought he had improved, but the problem creeped back in. Nuevy definitely does better the more games he plays. I want to give Nuevy a 4-5 game shot at taking the spot back.

Posted by: capscoach | February 17, 2011 7:52 AM | Report abuse

Yawning my arse off this morning and probably annoyed the neighbors yelling after Semin got the GWG. But it was worth it.

What really frustrated me on some of the Ducks' goals was the bad positioning by some of the Caps players, especially the one on which Carlson was a screen (I forget which goal that was given how many there were!). From Carlson's reaction, he knew it, too.

My gut tells me "BernieWolfeFan" is right about a let-down tonight. My gut also tells me I may pull a "washingtoncapitals" (7:41 AM comment) and fall asleep during tonight's game.

Posted by: 1995hoo | February 17, 2011 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Pulling in a random stat for content purposes? Liked it the first time when it was being done elsewhere.

Posted by: Section117 | February 17, 2011 8:16 AM | Report abuse

While none of us want to see our Caps have a night on defense like that, and granted the offensive explosion was against a back-up goalie after the all-star G went on reserve, lets take the glass full view that our best players (Semin, Ovy, Backy, Knuble, Laich) all produced, the grinders produced a welcome and necessary goal (Steckel's), and they showed a sheer "will-to-win" that's been lacking.

It oughta be enough for fellow fans/bloggers to put their pitchforks and torches down... for one game. :)

Posted by: blackjack65 | February 17, 2011 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Fell asleep, but was happy to see they finally scored some goals!

Ducks are in bad shape...with Hillier out.

Great job Semin...now your trade value goes up! :)

I did see Ovechkin's goal...it was awesome, haven't seen that at all this year.

I still think they have some problems and need to shake it up...

BUT.....a win is a win!!!!

PS> Katie, no, this was not "A COMPLETE GAME EFFORT"....offense was there, goaltending was not. (But I like wins like this better than ones with no shots and few goals)

Posted by: SoaringCaps | February 17, 2011 8:25 AM | Report abuse

Big two points last night, especially with Carolina and Buffalo losing. Last night was a flashback to fun times gone by.

2nd line center, 1st line rw. Bring them in Georgie and let's make a run at this thing.

Posted by: underpants2 | February 17, 2011 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Don't over analyze last night. That's one of those fluke games that happens sometimes. The defense has been steady for weeks. The goaltenders had been fine for weeks. Odd but fun game last night. Glad to see Caps get the win! Great job by Erskine standing up for Hendricks. Maybe all the scoring will wake up the offense!

Posted by: kcbrichmond | February 17, 2011 8:42 AM | Report abuse

Anyone else a little hopeful that Ovie is waking up...I mean he has had more Ovie goals over the past 3 weeks than he has for the rest of the season combined...come on GR8! We need u.

On the reverse side...anyone concerned that over half of Semin's goals have come off hat tricks? He is either having a great game...or he is MIA...it will be pretty hard for any player to score a hat trick in a playoff series.

Posted by: capscoach | February 17, 2011 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Ya know, you can lament the lack of D and the poor goaltending all you want, but our D and goaltending have been prety solid all year, and taking a night off doesn't alter that one iota. Some of those goals were fluky (including the one off Schultz's arm) or screened (luv ya J. Carlson but clear the crease), and others had little to do with our D (Koivu's incredible moves on Selanne's goal and C. Perry's shorthander). These are not all goalie issues or D issues, but that's not the point. Our D has been pretty awesome this year and our goalies' GA's are very good.

We have, on the other hand, been totally lost on offense, and the team has been lost as a result. Last night was huge, as far as I'm concerned, because we came back with offense. We were down and outscored them 3-1 in the third. Sure we had some breaks, but we also had three breakaway goals. We pressured in the O zone, stole pucks, and cycled. Until last night, no one on this team showed much confidence of late that they could come back and win from 1 down, let alone 2. Having Semin back as a weapon and having shaken off most of the rust is absolutely huge as well when we've been facing the sort of goal drought we have.

Granted, they need to take this and do something with it, but I don't worry one bit about our D and I'm not putting all those goals on our Gs. I'm thrilled they came back, put up 7, and won the game dramatically in the last 2 mintues. Huge.

Posted by: Justafan | February 17, 2011 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Well said Justafan.

Posted by: tslats | February 17, 2011 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Last night was fun for a change. Frankly, great to get a win but just happy to see some offense for a change. Feels like somebody opened up a windows in a room with 3 months of stale air.

I think Ovie is waking up - he has stepped it up the last 5 games or so. Semin is just too inconsistent - I agree this should raise his trade value. I would move him now - he disappears in big games and in the playoffs. Will remain a talented guy but an enigma.

Posted by: rskinsfan | February 17, 2011 11:28 AM | Report abuse

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