No Alex, no problem
With a thorough 7-3 victory tonight in Sunrise, the Caps showed, yet again, that they're a pretty good team even without their superstar winger. They also might have finished off the Panthers' fading playoff hopes.
Check out my gamer here (an updated version should posted soon), then check back for a short Bruce Boudreau video and some final thoughts from South Florida before I head to Raleigh:
*Boudreau on winning without suspended superstar Alex Ovechkin and on Brendan Morrison's impressive effort:
*The Caps improved to 7-2 this season without Ovechkin, who spent a bit of the night on press row. At one point, he was checking his email on Official Caps beat writer Mike Vogel's laptop.
His teammates, though, didn't skip a beat without him. Again. They're now averaging about 4.8 goals per game without him. Boudreau's answer for that?
"They try harder because the game's No. 1 player is not there," he said. "It's like not relying on big brother. When he's there's and it's a close game you're always saying, 'Let's keep it close game, Alex is going to score and tie it.' But when he's not there, they know they have to take it upon themselves to do it."
*Morrison, as I mentioned earlier, had a big night, one game after getting scratched for an important matchup in Chicago. He had a goal and two assists, including a helper on Eric Fehr's game winner.
Afterward, Morrison opened up about his second half struggles. He also said that the deadline day additions served as a major wakeup call.
"It was getting ridiculous, to be honest with you," Morrison said. "Before Christmas I was basically a point a game guy. Then I just fell off a cliff. There were times this season when I was down and frustrated. But tonight, I just told myself, 'Go play.' That's the way I'm going to approach it the rest of the year. I think I have some things to offer the team down the stretch."
Morrison did, however, win only six of his 15 faceoffs, according to the scoresheet. But, as he said, "Tonight, hopefully, is a start."
*Fehr also continutes to prove to be remarkably efficient despite limited ice time, scoring for the fourth time in his last six games.
*It's tough to be critical after a blowout win. But the Caps need to stop yielding goals one shift after putting one in the net. It's been happening a lot lately, and it happened again tonight. In the second period, after Brooks Laich scored on the power play to make it 5-1, the Caps inexplicably let up and Kamil Kreps scored on a rebound just 22 seconds later.
*Speaking of Laich, with a pair of goals and an assist, he set career highs for goals and points. He's now got 24 and 54. Laich is also one of only two Caps to have suited up for all 70 games. (Nicklas Backstrom is the other).
*And finally and injury "update" on Boyd Gordon, who missed almost the entire game after getting tripped early on by Shawn Matthias. Gordon, according to Boudreau aggravated the back strain that has bothered him on and off for most of the season. Boudreau said it's possible the checking line center will miss a few games.
I'll check in from RBC Center early tomorrow afternoon.
Posted by: dugza | March 16, 2010 11:57 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: timmyv38 | March 16, 2010 11:59 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Cerealman | March 17, 2010 12:00 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 17, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: timmyv38 | March 17, 2010 12:12 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: tominfl1 | March 17, 2010 12:31 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | March 17, 2010 12:43 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: CapsFan75 | March 17, 2010 12:44 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: robgerri | March 17, 2010 1:25 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: BernieWolfeFan | March 17, 2010 2:01 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Aldred15 | March 17, 2010 4:10 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Raber | March 17, 2010 4:54 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: dccitizen1 | March 17, 2010 6:47 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: CapsFan75 | March 17, 2010 6:47 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: PhilR | March 17, 2010 7:40 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Caps16Fan | March 17, 2010 8:04 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Capsyoungguns | March 17, 2010 8:21 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: nena1 | March 17, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: RedLitYogi | March 17, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | March 17, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.