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Snowvechkin ends with a tip of the hat


(John McDonnell/The Washington Post)


Morning roundup


What Super Bowl? The game of the day -- the season, really -- was played at noon (as scheduled, despite the snow) and the season's second installment of Caps vs. Pens did not fail to impress:

Sidney Crosby scored the first two goals Sunday. Alex Ovechkin, though, ended up doing the Pittsburgh Penguins captain one better.
Ovechkin recorded his first regular season hat trick in almost a year, then assisted on Mike Knuble's overtime winner at Verizon Center, where the fans who trudged through two feet of snow were treated to a 5-4, come-from-behind win that extended the Washington Capitals' winning streak to 14 games and ended any discussion about which rivalry is hockey's best. | Full story »

The aftermath of Snowvechkin was enough to keep many at home, but for the Caps fans who were able to make it to Verizon Center, writes Post reporter Gene Wang, the trip was well worth the hassle.

*Check out some shots of Ovechkin, Crosby and hats all over the ice in our photo gallery. You can also look back through each of the Caps' 14 straight wins here.

*Ovie smashes the goal cam, Mike Milbury says weird things. (Bog)


Postgame video

*Alex Ovechkin on his hat trick
*Mike Green, Bruce Boudreau
*Tarik's analysis
*Eric Fehr, Mike Knuble on their goals


Ovechkin's hat trick


Everybody loves Ovie

*Everything the NHL could have wanted. (DC Examiner)

*Corey Masisak (hey, I know that guy!) for NHL.com on hockey's best rivalry and Crosby's two goals.

*Corey Masisak (busy man) for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Pens powerless against Ovechkin.

*Pens blow a three-goal lead. (Post-Gazette)

*Ovechkin, first in your heart and first in Puck Daddy's three stars of the game.

*The game must go on. (And it did.) (ESPN)

*Ovechkin's reign as captain is almost flawless. (Fanhouse)

*Ovechkin dominates Crosby. (CSN)

*Recaps from Storming the Crease, Japers' Rink, Rock the Red, Peerless, Russian Machine Never Breaks, Alex Ovetjkin, Hockey Mom.

*Blogger says Mike Milbury assaulted him, but some might see it the other way around. (Kukla's Korner)

*Musings of a snow refugee. (On Frozen Blog)

*Ted got snowed in, too. (But he made it to the game on time.) (Ted's Take)

*And then Ted gets a little braggy on Facebook:

Yeah--you were right--we should have cancelled the game.No one came--and the few people who did didnt see much of a game.I should also listen to my Facebook friends--:-)! Go Caps..

*Ovie vs. Crosby, defensively. (The Puck Stops Here)

*More photos from the game, via Caps In Pictures.

*Varly looks good in rehab with da Bears. (Russian Machine Never Breaks)

*Holding-hand-mockingly-to-the-ear fail. (@dcsportsbog)

The Caps have a well-earned day off, but stay tuned for a story from Gene Wang later today.

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  February 8, 2010; 5:38 AM ET
 | Tags: Alex Ovechkin, Morning roundup, Pittsburgh Penguins  
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Next: Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom named NHL's first, third stars of the week

Comments

the only thing i love more than the caps winning is the caps winning vs. the penguins. oh and for the 14th time in a row. i know this run will end but as long as i didnt end with the guin, i am one happy fan!!!!

can you hear me now staal?

Posted by: mrszilla | February 8, 2010 6:02 AM | Report abuse

I was surprised that Millbury implied that Cindy was Ovi's "daddy", or anyone else's daddy for that matter. I am not sure if Uncle Mario lets Cindy bring girls back to the house.

Great links, Lindsay.

Posted by: crooks_c | February 8, 2010 6:52 AM | Report abuse

What an incredible game. Boy, am I glad I was able to get to the game rather than listen to those NBC guys. A fantastic experience.

There is so much trash talk out there, it's ridiculous. Obviously the Caps are not going to get the respect of a lot of people until we win the cup. So let's do that.

Posted by: Sonyask | February 8, 2010 7:01 AM | Report abuse

I am going to agree w/analysis on "Alex Ovetjkin" that says Caps need better defense. They do, and it won't cost much. I'm figuring a #2 pick or a marginal prospect will get us one player, just one, someone who's either a forward and can give us a checking line (optimally) or someone on the blueline who will do a better job of not allowing Crosby and other top forwards to get wide open.

I know, 14 straight is great. But, there are at least two forwards (BMo, Gordo) and two d-men (ShaMo, Erskine) who could be replaced by upgrades w/o any "disruption." The right tweak could well mean the Cup.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 7:47 AM | Report abuse

Mike Milbury's comment about Crosby being Ovi's daddy was lifted from the Yankees/Red Sox rivalry. Stupid comment to be sure. It was painful to have MM calling the game on national TV, but so sweet to have the Caps come back and win. It'll be nice to hear Joe and Craig again.

Posted by: dccitizen1 | February 8, 2010 7:55 AM | Report abuse

As if we needed another reason to dislike Mike Milbury...

Posted by: rachel216 | February 8, 2010 8:03 AM | Report abuse

well we had better get used to it because if they make it to the conference and cup finals as they should, it won't be Joe B. and Locker calling those games.

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 8:04 AM | Report abuse

Was Milbury the color guy in the NBC broadcast? I was watching the game essentially on mute for the first quarter, and didn't get a chance to actually hear this fine broadcaster until late in the third.

So, what's his deal, did he used to play for the Pens or something? Is he Canadian? I honestly don't know anything about the man, but I sure have an idea of what Hockey team he roots for.

Posted by: VTDuffman | February 8, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Was Milbury the color guy in the NBC broadcast?

Posted by: VTDuffman

Yes.

Posted by: rachel216 | February 8, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Milbury is a Bruins guy, he has more reason to hate the Pens than we do... Ulf Samuelsson basically ended the career of Cam Neely

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Fact is, the Penguins have earned the respect of the league through years of excellent play, championships, and the most recent Cup win. Their standing in the public and press eye, and in the power rankings, will remain inflated for a time. We have come from behind and surpassed them, and if things go as planned it should be that way for years to come. But the fact that NBC and others are on their knees for the Pens should not be surprising. It's maddening to hear the slanted reporting, comments on penalties, etc., but we've got a few more roads to travel to garner the adoration of those sorts.

I think we can and we will. In the meantime, let's use it to motivate.

Posted by: Sonyask | February 8, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Cam Neely is the player that Ovie resembles the most... the only difference is that Ovie has more speed and Neely could fight with the best of them

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

In a small way, this is the start of thrusting game 7 off our backs -- though it's going to take a Pens series/cup win to do that completely. When we went down 4-1, it was quiet as a church in VC. Shades of game 7 for sure. But, as Ovi suggested in his post-game comments, by the third the crowd was willing the Caps to win, and Ovi delivered. Pure deliriousness.

No, it's not the playoffs, but it's nice. And, oh yeah, we won our 14th straight, BTW.

Posted by: Sonyask | February 8, 2010 8:52 AM | Report abuse

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The San Jose Sharks bolstered their defense by acquiring Niclas Wallin in a trade with the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday.

San Jose also acquired a fifth-round pick in 2010 and sent a 2010 second-rounder -- that previously belonged to Buffalo -- to the Hurricanes to complete the deal.


I suspect that this is the kinda trade that GMGM will make before the trade deadline

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

@Lindsay

First thanks for the great links. What a beautiful morning to read about our beloved Caps and their stomping of the flightless fowls.

In general:

Second, honestly what is it about these two teams and especially the two superstars Ovi and Crosby. The two really know how to raise the level of their game and make the intensity palpable. My television set was pulsating (yes we are not yet plowed--maybe by this afternoon). If my heart can stand it I love it when these two teams play each other.

Third, worst most horrible terrible broadcasting ever. As much as I can appreciate the Alex the Great vs Sid the Kid marketing, it's about the teams, and the game itself was badly covered.

Couldn't understand the scrums, no discussion of the penalties, and whoa what is with the dissing of the Capitals by Mike Milbury. I know he doesn't care for BB but I was appalled he called us the "Crapitals" last season. And then after Crosby's second goal (gotta admit his two goals were his specialities the way Ovi's slapshot is his), I couldn't believe he said something to the effect of Crosby just said to Ovechkin, I'm still your daddy." Guess Ovi took issue with his comment. What a game for Ovi to have his first season hat trick.

Maquire was okay--loved his love of Schultz. He's just too light in his commentary for me sometimes. I like actual analysis and recap of the plays.

If we do meet the Pens in the playoffs and I expect we will, we should definitely expect fireworks. I hope we meet them in the finals because that's how these two teams play each other--to the bitter, bitter end.

Posted by: Capsyoungguns | February 8, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Not directly related to the article, but I decided to revive the "Caps Season Series Stats" that I started doing last season. Like last season, I am keeping them at http://kurly.net/CapsStats.txt (and the old address at kurly.net:666 should still work, if anyone actually has it saved from last season) -- the idea behind the table is to compare the Caps to each Eastern Conference team based on the results of head-to-head matchups.

The current version is somewhat preliminary and although I don't believe there are any errors, if anyone spots any, I'd be happy to make the corrections. Note that I haven't filled in all the clinch scenarios for Ottawa, Tampa Bay, and Carolina yet, because I haven't had a chance to figure them out yet and I'm done working on this thing for now. ;)

I might mention the site a few more times in the future, but don't expect daily reminders or anything... if you like it, bookmark it or remember the address. I will try to update it frequently (daily or more often) but I cannot make any promises. The table is hand-generated at the moment, but it is usually pretty easy to keep up-to-date.

Hopefully someone finds it useful or interesting, and if not, then sorry for wasting everyone's time and bandwidth. ;)

Posted by: GregAnnapolis | February 8, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

I can't access twitter at work. Who is holding their hand to their ear in the entry on @dcsportsbog?

Posted by: ouvan59 | February 8, 2010 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Unsung hero of the game was Pothier.
Thought he played the body well.
Was in on all the scrums.
Made orchick mad during their 4th goal.
Was very commanding with his point play during the PP.
Didn't showed up in the stat sheet but was definitely out there.

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

From the NHL.com Masisak article...

Orpik felt Semin embellished the play and was tagged with a game misconduct 23 seconds after going to the penalty box.

"He's a baby," Orpik said. "I don't know [if it was a high stick], but he does that all game long. I got zero respect for the kid. Yeah, it is tough to lose on that."

Wow those are strong words. Semen should save that quote for motivation for the next meeting.

Posted by: DBnMD | February 8, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

joek443: I am in agreement with what you said. Don't know how everyone feels about Wallin, but the Sharks got him just by swapping picks. They gave up one of the late middle in Round 2 (#50 say) for one of the first in Round 5 (#121). That's not "free" but it almost is. I certainly don't expect the Caps to move any of the Fab 5 (Alzner, Carlson, Varly, Neuvy, Holtby) for a rental, but this is the kind of deal that would give us an upgrade on the PK. I don't care if we get a guy who only plays 12-15 mins/game, if he can help on PK, that's the ticket.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

@ouvan59: Staal. "Someone held his hand mockingly by his ear a bit too early."

Posted by: GregAnnapolis | February 8, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

What a game yesterday, I was sitting in section 120 (between two Pens fans which sucked but was great at the end). The crowd was really pushing the boys in the 3rd. I only wish they would do that more often and do it from the drop of the puck.

Posted by: LloydChristmas | February 8, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

I can't access twitter at work. Who is holding their hand to their ear in the entry on @dcsportsbog?

Posted by: ouvan59 | February 8, 2010 9:33 AM
Jordan Staal was the guy. I seem to remember NBC going to commercial with that shot. Way to silence a 8 year old kid Jordan.

RE: the announcers' commentary
There was absolutely NO discussion of the reason for Nicky's misconduct penalty or the fact that the Pens (Orpik?) initiated the brawl after a goal. Obviously gettig back at Pothier for that old school hip check.

Posted by: kevinTheK | February 8, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Remember, it is rebroadcast at 2 pm today on NHL Network if you want to watch/record. Won't know until I get home, but believe it will be TSN feed. So, maybe some of those unanswered questions will get explanations.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

More on ("moron"?) Mike Milbury from Wikipedia:

"However, Milbury has also been criticized for the many decisions he made in which payroll or orders for upper management were not factors. Many young players and prospects that Milbury traded away went on to have distinguished careers, often eclipsing those of the players he received in return. He has traded away defensemen Zdeno Chara, Wade Redden, Bryan Berard, Eric Brewer, Darius Kasparaitis, and Bryan McCabe; goalies Roberto Luongo and Tommy Salo, as well as forwards Olli Jokinen, Todd Bertuzzi, Tim Connolly, and Raffi Torres. Milbury has also come under fire for his draft day decisions such as choosing Rick DiPietro first overall in 2000 over Dany Heatley and Marian Gaborik; as well as his decision to include the 2001 second overall draft pick (Jason Spezza) as part of the Alexei Yashin trade."

Posted by: sessal | February 8, 2010 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Tomin: unfortunately, I think we're going to get the NBC re-broadcast on the NHL Network this afternoon.

Posted by: sessal | February 8, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

sessal and tominfl1: NHL.com only listed an NBC telecast; normally if TSN or CBC were there, they'd list them too. If the game was in Canada, it may have been the NBC feed, but I do not know for sure.

Posted by: GregAnnapolis | February 8, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

So what the heck WAS the deal on the misconduct penalty to Backstrom? We were right behind the goal and saw a lot of great action in the scrum, but none of the focus was on Backie at all. What happened?

Posted by: Sonyask | February 8, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

I was at Verizon yesterday - ridiculous!

However, although I have enjoyed watching replays of the goals, I can't seem to find a good source for replays of the fights and controversial penalties. Anybody know of a more exhaustive source for replays?

Posted by: ralph4100 | February 8, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

ralph4100:

For fights: http://www.hockeyfights.com/

Don't think you'll find any for penalties. The only way is if you recorded the game... but then again, NBC didn't really replay many of the penalties.

Posted by: rachel216 | February 8, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Well, even if NHL Net rebroadcast is again the NBC feed, it'll be more fun to watch then anyting else on TV tonight!

Besides, I forgot to record yesterday, and my one daughter missed it, so I got yelled at for that and this fixes it.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Was Milbury the color guy in the NBC broadcast? I was watching the game essentially on mute for the first quarter, and didn't get a chance to actually hear this fine broadcaster until late in the third.

So, what's his deal, did he used to play for the Pens or something? Is he Canadian? I honestly don't know anything about the man, but I sure have an idea of what Hockey team he roots for.

Posted by: VTDuffman | February 8, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

If you haven't already, read BB's book. There is a story in there that will shed light on why MM is the way he is towards the Caps. All has to do with a run in with BB earlier in their careers.

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | February 8, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Where are the newest power rankings? I'm looking forward to finding out if the TSN and ESPN computers will again default to SJ at #1 despite the obvious fact that the Caps should finally be there.

Posted by: BigMogilny | February 8, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Just imagine how dominant this team would be if McPhee added a solid veteran Dman or two.

Great game yesterday, it was like being on a scary rollercoaster. Lots of ups and down but when the ride stopped I had a big sh!t eating grin on my face.

Posted by: FLDave | February 8, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Milbury was a lousy player, a lousy coach, a lousy GM and he is a lousy announcer. Why do people keep employing him?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 8, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

@DBnMD

Agree with you on Orpik's comments on Semin. Those are fighting words.

Next time the Caps play Penguins (or when Caps play Penguins in playoffs), Sasha says, "Don't call me baby" and proceeds to score the game winning goal.

What I would love to see some day is Semin getting the game winning goal against the Penguins to eliminate them from the playoffs while Orpik is watching from the penalty box. That would be deserved.

As it is, yesterday's win was satisfying. A more deserving person could not have been in in the box.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

@kevinTheK

Nothing like Orpik initiating a brawl after the Pens scored a goal. And earlier this year he had the nerve to refer to Ovi as a dirty player.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

believe it or not, Orpik is exactly the type of a d-man the Caps lack... if they had one like him, they could easily win the Cup.

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Not that it will do any good, but I actually sent a note of complaint to NBC about Milbury suggesting that he falls far below their normal standards for journalistic integrity and that they should drop him from their broadcasts.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 8, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Lindsay,
Did you ever figure out what happened during the chat yesterday (where my name and others-Zosodave and wft_eric_fehr got hijacked)? It was very frustrating to say the least. Maybe some Pen fans? Just curious

Posted by: TimDz | February 8, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

That was one of the best games ever!


We are awesome!

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 8, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

I thought Poti had a surprisingly tough game. He's normally fairly solid but looked like he really couldn't handle the forechecking pressure yesterday. But he did get better as the game went on like most of the team did. Everyone seemed to be having problems handling the puck and making simple passes for the first half of the game.

Posted by: Stu_c | February 8, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

@joek443

What would you give up to acquire Orpik?

Of course, if we acquired him, the refs would probably send him to the penalty box more often than he would if he remained a Penguin.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Tyler Sloan needs to sit down for a few games.
Bad breakout passes aren't what we need from a D-Man.

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Ray Ferraro at TSN talks about similarities between the Caps and the Oilers just before their first Stanley Cup.


http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=309433

Posted by: bigschu8 | February 8, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Sloan's pass was absolutely horrible. Nonetheless, I thought he redeemed himself fairly well with strong play the balance of the game.

Posted by: Sonyask | February 8, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

@Sonyask: I agree that Sloan played pretty well the rest of the way. To some extent you saw a perfect example of his game and why he is on the bubble at the NHL level. He has a lot of skill (skates really well for a D-man, handles the puck pretty well and is physical) but he does have a penchant for the brain cramp. Maybe he just needs to play more. Maybe less. That's why they pay GMGM and BB the big bucks. :^)

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 8, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

@ CapsFan75

I don't think the Pens are gonna trade Orpik to anyone, least of all to the Caps... he's signed till 2014 @ 3.75 mil/yr

he's their defensive anchor, he ain't going anywhere

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

joek443: I think CF75 meant a "guy like Orpik." You look up and down our roster and we have every kind of player except:

1) snarling, crease-clearing defenseman ala Mark Tinordi (or Orpik)
2) a goon
3) a sandpaper player
4) Selke-candidate forward

You're not going to add 4 players and I think we all agree you don't need a goon in the Playoffs anyway. We need I think a little more nastiness from someone not named Ovechkin and we need better defense on the PK. I'd like to think we can get one rental at least and get a sandpaper guy who also satisfies either #1 or #4.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Nice job showing up for the game Caps fans. Great win by the Caps, no doubt. I grow weary of the Ovechkin vs. Crosby marketing of the games, but that's what happens when you move to network TV and try to appeal to a larger audience. The Caps are clearly playing better hockey right now. Thank God for the Olympic break.

Posted by: Jumpy66 | February 8, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

I would rather lose with dignity than win with a player like Orpik.

Posted by: butcherbaker | February 8, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

re: Sloan

obviously the pass to Cindy was bad, but I don't get why we're playing him in the first place.

Next game, watch every time Sloan gets the puck. At least 2/3 of the time he gets burned, outmanned, or knocked off the puck down in the corners.

He makes 1-2 good, highly visible plays a game, but if you watch him closely you'll see he should be on the Greyhound to Herhsey.

Posted by: ralph4100 | February 8, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Sloan-Poti made me nervous every time they were out there.

Guys I like seeing on the ice: Schultz, Green, Pothier

not so much: Morrison, Poti, Erskine

not at all: Sloan

Undetermined: Alzner, Carlson

Posted by: butcherbaker | February 8, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: jakopz | February 8, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Mad at Mike Milbury? Wouldn't it be great if you could see him getting dropped by a nice left hook right in his face by former Capitals' captain Ryan Walter? Yeah, that'd be nice:

http://www.veoh.com/browse/videos/category/sports/watch/v18570402ZXr6W7eR

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Lindsay,
Did you ever figure out what happened during the chat yesterday (where my name and others-Zosodave and wft_eric_fehr got hijacked)? It was very frustrating to say the least. Maybe some Pen fans? Just curious

Posted by: TimDz | February 8, 2010 11:33 AM |

I am pretty curious myself. I wonder if its safe to return to my old ID (wtf_e_fehr)

Posted by: real_wtf_fehr | February 8, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1 & Joek443

I don't particularly want Orpik for the team anyhow. Too many grudges against him.

But I know that he certainly supplies the sandpaper quality for Pittsburgh that the Caps could use.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Wow, still no mention of Knuble's Gordie Howe Hat Trick? Talk about unsung hero:

A fight in which he earned an instigator penalty for sticking up for Ovechkin in the first;

An assist Ovechkin's hat trick goal(the announcers say that Backstrom won the faceoff cleanly back to Ovechkin, but if you pay attention to the play--and the boxscore--the faceoff went to Knuble, who then kicked it back to Ovechkin);

And a dirty, nasty junk goal in overtime to clinch the game.

So, for get about Mike Milbury, how about Mike Knuble???

Posted by: aybee27 | February 8, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

@aybee27: I mentioned Knuble's Howe trick on this blog yesterday. There was some discussion about whether Ovi qualified with his punch to Adams' face.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 8, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

@CapsFan75: Re: the sandpaper quality the Caps need. I think one of main concerns a lot of us have (and I suspect GMGM may be in this camp)is that the league has shown a pattern for treating the Caps differently (and I would say unfairly) on matters of "toughness". Remember, Brashear was suspended in the playoffs last year for a sandpaper play. Kunitz didn't even draw a penalty for an attack on Varly that in some towns would have brought the police into the situation. This year we have the Green suspension as another example. Yesterday we had Adams committing an awful and dangerous boarding penalty against the best player in the world and drawing no penalty and I'm sure no suspension. So, if we waste a roster spot on a guy like that, we will likely end up playing a man down at some critical point in the playoffs.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 8, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

@youaresquishy

Thanks for posting that link!

Awesome video.

Posted by: TwoBuckChuck | February 8, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Wow! I don't think I ever watched a more thrilling and satisfying game. I spent the whole rest of the day yesterday in sheer ecstasy and I am still too giddy to settle into my daily routine.

Ovechkin is unbelievable and we are so lucky to have him locked in for years to come. It is not just his skill, but his leadeship abilities, loyalty and generosity. How much luckier could we get. And hasn't everybody seen a big change in him since he became captain? It seems, he rises to whatever the occasion may be to rescue or re-direct this team as needed.

I just hope they don't burn out. Can they keep going with this intensity and success indefinitely?

Posted by: caraveli | February 8, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

As I first reported Saturday night, that was what Kovalchuk was doing when he punched Rangers’ pest Sean Avery several times during a stoppage in play with 2:16 left in the Devils’ 3-1 loss to the Blueshirts. Avery was trying to get under Kovalchuk’s skin with his usual trash-talking routine, but when Kovalchuk didn’t bite, Avery turned toward the usual target for his venom—goaltender Martin Brodeur. That, according teammate Mike Mottau, who was on the ice at the time, was when Kovalchuk got angry.

He dug the blade of his stick into Avery’s gut first and then punched him several times in the head with his right hand. One of Kovalchuk’s punches landed squarely enough that it knocked out Avery’s mouthpiece and it landed a few feet away on the ice.

“Avery is yapping off in his ear and then when he turned to Marty and started saying something, he stood up for Marty,” Mottau said of Kovalchuk.. “He was a captain down in Atlanta for a reason, too. He’s a quiet kid, but definitely is a leader.”


God, I love Kovalchuk.

Posted by: richmondphil | February 8, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Mike Knuble, he has just moved into 17th place in the NHL this season in points per minute of ice time, one spot behind Tomas Fleischmann and one spot ahead of Martin St. Louis.

ESPN keeps a stat called "PROD" which measures this, except it's backwards (so it's minutes per point, which means lower is better). I impose an arbitrary minimum of 30 games played on this year's and every year's charts so that they don't include players like the Capitals' own Keith Aucoin, who has managed to put up a 15:50 PROD so far this season in his 9 games (which would be good enough for FOURTH PLACE on this year's chart if the minimum were only 9 games played).

With a 4-point day yesterday, Alexander Ovechkin's league-leading PROD is now down to 12:45, which is better than Semin's league-leading end-of-season mark last year of 15:05 and Sidney Crosby's league-leading 2007-08 mark of 15:20 by a mile. Crosby's league-leading 2006-07 mark of 13:40 and Thornton's 2005-06 mark of 13:49 are closer--I expect Ovechkin's PROD to be nearer to this area by season's end. Ovechkin is on a ridiculous pace at the moment. For the sake of this season's absolute goals and points numbers, it's kind of sad that he had to miss so many games this year. Or maybe all the off time has helped him to maintain this pace?

Anyway, here are your top 30 in PROD so far (minimum 30 games played):

1. OVECHKIN 12:45
2. D. Sedin 14:06
3. H. Sedin 14:10
4. J. Thornton 16:00
5. BACKSTROM 16:13
6. SEMIN 16:22
7. S. Crosby 17:06
8. P. Kane 17:48
9. D. Heatley 18:00
10. M. Gaborik 18:02
11. E. Malkin 18:07
12. B. Richards 18:09
13. S. Stamkos 18:44
14. I. Kovalchuk 18:56
15. P. Marleau 19:08
16. FLEISCHMANN 19:17
17. KNUBLE 19:37
18. M. St. Louis 19:40
19. Z. Parise 19:55
20. D. Alfredsson 20:05
21. FEHR 20:07
22. T. Connolly 20:27 (why is he not on the U.S. Olympic team?)
23. V. Lecavalier 20:29
24. M. Hossa 20:38
25. A. Burrows 20:41
26. A. Kopitar 20:47
27. T. Plekanec 20:57
28. P. Elias 20:59
29. R. Getzlaf 21:19
30. J. Dumont 21:30

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

@ccCapsfan

Funny, I'm not usually the one who argues for getting the "gritty" guys. But there are times I wonder if it's needed.

But I do think the Caps seem to get treated more harshly by the NHL when it comes to supplementary discipline. (Three games for Green. How ridiculous was that one?)

I think Joek443 is our main booster of acquiring more "grit".

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

joek, having a player like Orpik would just mean more reasons for the refs to call bad penalties on the Caps, and would certainly keep us out of the Finals. A physical defenseman would help, but not a dirty one like Orpik.

Posted by: timmyv38 | February 8, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

I think Joek443 is our main booster of acquiring more "grit".

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 1:26 PM |

MetalCapsFan, cstanton1, and me to an extent. :)

I want Steve Ott, give me Steve Ott.

Posted by: richmondphil | February 8, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

maybe I've missed something but didn't the Pens make it to the last two Cups finals with Orpik as their anchor on defense??

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

ccCapsfan: The play to which you referred, the Brashear elbow, was not "sandpaper" but goonery.

I don't think we don't need a goon.

Sandpaper is Matt Cooke, Theo Fleury, Dino Ciccarelli. Avery is that too (not all sandpaper guys are as dumb as Avery). Our best ever was maybe Esa Tikkanen in th 98 playoffs. You want someone to throw the other guy off his game, best example recently was Steve Downie getting Ovi to drop his gloves.

We need a *pest*. That's the best word.

And we need help on PK (that's the grittiness).

Two players would be perfect - one forward and one d-man - and together they would help the PK, add grit, add pestiness and help form a true forward checking line.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

If you extrapolate Ovechkin's current numbers to 82 games (and round off to the nearest 1), you get 68 goals and 71 assists, which would be 3 goals and 17 assists better than his best marks so far.

If you extrapolate Ovechkin's current numbers to the maximum number of games he could end up playing in this season, 74, you get only 61 goals and 64 assists, which would still be good enough to pass his previous best points total by 13, even though he'd have 4 fewer goals than he did two years ago.

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Phil: I think we agree on Ott; in fact, I got his name from you. Now add someone in the Bob Rouse mold (to pull a name from past) and I think you have the two rentals we could really use.

Plug those two guys into the lineup and I don't think it would be too hard to find two players to scratch.

Sutton on the Islanders is a possibility, but they are in the race.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Kubina. But, like the Islanders, ATL's in a playoff race. Don't know if he'll go.

Posted by: richmondphil | February 8, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

I still haven't heard anything about Backstrom's misconduct.
What was it for? I must have been watching a different game.
What have the Caps done to earn such hatred throughout the league?

Posted by: baybuster | February 8, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl: Maybe Brashear's play was goonery, but so was Kunitz's and the point is still that the Caps get treated differently for all forms of rough play. I do like the idea of a pest. But, Chimera had that reputation with Columbus and while there is no doubt that he is big and tough, he doesn't seem to be playing like a pest for the Caps. Maybe it is something about the way we play. We play at such a fast pace that our guys don't have the energy to be pests?

Posted by: ccCapsfan | February 8, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone know where one can watch rerun of the entire pens game? Hulu? nbc.com?

Posted by: Andoy | February 8, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Shimmy is not really a pest. He'll get down every now and then, but he isn't Avery, Burrows, Ott, Cooke, etc

Posted by: richmondphil | February 8, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Luv the wannabe GM talk but lets not forget with the current makeup of this team:

http://espn.go.com/nhl/powerrankings

and

14 straight games

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

& reduction in penalties.
So not sure where the sandpaper & grit stuff will get us esp. when we are making teams pay for that kind of shenanigans.

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

youaresquishy : Thanks for the video!

Posted by: uncatim | February 8, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Rocc00: You may think we are already a shoo-in for the Cup, but I've seen too many upsets to be that smug.

We don't need a big trade and surely Kovy wasn't what we needed. A tweak is all. By sandpaper, we mean a guy to give a face wash and things of that nature. Someone to get under Crosby's skin just like Downie did to Ovi.

And God in Heaven knows our PK could be just a wee bit better.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

KOVALCHUK, a dissenting view

I think I like Kovalchuk too, whenever I see him play. Definitely an excellent shooter, and almost no one else is, so he's got rare talent.

BUT...

Here's an article with a different view on Kovalchuk's overall value: http://www.behindthenethockey.com/

The author is of the opinion that, all things considered, the Devils overpaid.

"Bottom line: Kovalchuk has not played good two-way hockey. He starts out in the opponent's end a lot against relatively weak competition, generates a lot of offensive opportunities as a result, but gives it all back at the other end of the ice. He is a talented shooter, and brings a lot of value to the power-play, but he isn't Henrik Zetterberg."

This article talks doesn't explain itself very well when it comes to the numbers it presents. My next post might help with that.

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

If you've got a head for stats, this may help explain what the above is talking about, if you're feeling lost:

http://www.puckprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=436

In the chart at the bottom, which purports to be sort of a measure of overall hockey value, Kovalchuk last year came in DEAD LAST. Yeah. That can't be good. But what does that chart mean?

To try to keep this simple, I'll just point out that the first chart (the "Raw Delta" chart) is supposed to reflect "what a player’s plus-minus would have been with average goaltending on both teams, average shooting ability on both teams, and neutral luck."

Then there are two more charts that should be ignored--those are the just players that got the biggest adjustments per two adjustments that are discussed. Instead, scroll down to the next two charts that are entitled "Top 30 Delta SO" and "Bottom 20 Delta SO." "Delta SO" is supposed to be a measure of "Raw Delta" (see previous paragraph) further adjusted to normalize away the effects of number of face-offs in offensive/defensive zones, team's face-off win percentage, and the differences in opponents' Raw Delta adjusted for face-offs.

Interestingly, Semin, Green, and Fehr made the top 30 last year. Ovechkin didn't. One of my favorites, Zach Parise, was at the very top.

But Kovalchuk's Delta SO last year was the WORST, according to this author.

The author concludes: "While I doubt any NHL executives will take my statistics into account, this list goes some way towards explaining why I think the team that signs Kovalchuk will have overpaid. If Kovalchuk’s shooting percentage wasn’t off the charts, he’d be quite a liability to his team."

Of course, whether the deal is overall "good" depends partially on what else the Devils have in the organization, how much they want one more Cup while they still have Brodeur in net, and lots of other things. But these numbers would seem to indicate that Kovalchuk should actually make his team WORSE.

Whether that is more damning for Kovalchuk, or the author's statistical analyses, you be the judge. But it's all very interesting when you really start to dig into the numbers. I'm not saying there are not flaws with this stat, but I think there may be some truth to the idea that Kovalchuk, apart from his obvious shooting talent, is not all that valuable overall. It's not what my eyes tell me when I watch, but my eyes aren't really very objective.

Unfortunately, there's not much out there on the web that both explains itself in reasonably simple terms and undertakes a Sabermetrics-style analysis of players' overall hockey value, at least not that I can find. http://www.behindthenet.ca/ is the closest to a place like this I can find, but it does a very poor job of explaining the weird stats it keeps (and just today I noticed that I can't seem to find the charts at all anymore).

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

The Canadian Mafia's Zebra Unit tried their hardest to hand this game to the Pens and Canada's Very Special Boy. But I guess Cynthia had just gotten his nails done, and couldn't take the hand-off.

Posted by: large23220 | February 8, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Rocc00: You may think we are already a shoo-in for the Cup, but I've seen too many upsets to be that smug.
We don't need a big trade and surely Kovy wasn't what we needed. A tweak is all. By sandpaper, we mean a guy to give a face wash and things of that nature. Someone to get under Crosby's skin just like Downie did to Ovi.
& Heaven knows our PK could be just a wee bit better.
Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 2:24 PM

tominfl1 - def not giving us the cup yet that's for sure.
But sandpaper in & of itself is great only if it lets us stay out of the box & tweak the other guy - like Tikanen did back in '98.

But as you said, the PK could stand a bit of a step forward & I would rather we stay out of the box. You never sure how some of these guys with different systemic breeding play when they are incorporated into our system.

Posted by: Rocc00 | February 8, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

I don't do this normally, but I like this SO MUCH, so I want to repost this before I go:

Mad at Mike Milbury? Wouldn't it be great if you could see getting dropped by a nice left hook right in his face by former Capitals' captain Ryan Walter? Yeah, that'd be nice:

http://www.veoh.com/browse/videos/category/sports/watch/v18570402ZXr6W7eR

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Staying outta the box sounds good in theory but that's not practical. There are gonna be plenty of times in the playoffs when they will have to kill off a penalty or two in crucial situations to win.

Posted by: joek443 | February 8, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

I believe the Trade Deadline this year is March 3, so there's plenty of time for GMGM to bring home a defenseman.

Actually, I really don't know much about the business side of the NHL, but personally I would like to see Carlson here instead of Sloan, and I think that would make the Caps much better overall. He went +6 in six games in Washington this year, for one thing, and because of this and other reasons I think he's ready already to make this team a better one. I think Carlson would be a better addition than a lot of defenseman that are available for renting, and the Caps already have him. I would like to see him in Washington as soon as it makes business sense to call him up, and I would like to see him in the playoffs. I really don't know anything about all the rules for minor leaguers and salary caps and playoffs and all that though.

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Tarik (and Lindsay & co.) for all your great work on game story and blogs. But would it have killed the Post to print a column on the biggest, most spectacular game of the year (by any Washington franchise)? Guess the trip from L and 15th to F and 7th for an extra staffer would have broken the travel budget. (And don't tell me they were all at the Super Bowl.)

Posted by: jhershb | February 8, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Carlson, according to http://theahl.com/stats/statdisplay.php?type=records&subType=10&season_id=30&leagueId=4&lastActive=&singleSeason=&confId=0, is currently second in the AHL in +/- with a +30 in only 39 games. He's just barely ahead of second-best Hershey defenseman Alzner in +/- per game though, who is +23 in 30 games, but Alzner was -2 in his five games in Washington this year, while Carlson was +6 in six games. I forget who Alzner and Carlson played against and all that while they were in Washington, but I have a good feeling about Carlson. Alzner too, but more for Carlson.

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

--Get 50+ goals/100+ points in rookie season: Check.
--Win Calder Trophy: Check.
--Win Art Ross Trophy: Check.
--Win Hart Trophy: Double Check.
--Win Lester B Pearson Award: Ditto.
--Win Rocket Richard Trophy: Ditto.
--Become Team Captain: Check.
--Get 500+ points in first 5 NHL seasons: Check.
--Lead team to longest win streak in franchise history: Check.
--Break GoalCam with yet another highlight-reel tally: Check.
--Get the Pittsburgh monkey off our collective backs once and for all: In Progress.


OV is Da Man...our own real-life Fulton Reed...plus, he can Skate.


Seriously, I love the guy like a brother, and he makes me laugh too:

On Crosby: "He is great player but I think he talk too much"

Also, it is just about certain that--in an any interview--he will either say "Score goals" or "Score more goals"

Next Stop: Stanley Cup via the President's Trophy and Prince of Wales Trophy.

GO OVI! GO CAPS!

Posted by: Rhino40 | February 8, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

We know Bettman dislikes the Caps (don't know why, but he does). We know the NHL chooses Cindy over Ovie whenever possible. We know the refs are really out to get us (phantom penalties are getting more and more ridiculous to defend refs...)

But...at what point in time does this get looked at by the NHL (which has a commission that looks into Fairness in the game)..??

I got into a heated verbal battle with a bandwagoner Caps fan over our 'bad luck' and he feels that most Caps fans are pessimists and that is the reason we get poo-poo luck.

I asked which came first?? This has been going on for years and the 1st and 2nd periods (plus the Schultz phantom slash) were just reminders of seasons' gone bad...

How can we 'collectively' old fans and new fans exorcise this?? If it means sacrificing a live chicken to Joe-Boo...so f'ing be it...I'll bring the chicken.

Posted by: netminder71 | February 8, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

ESPN Power Rankings are out:

1) Caps 2) Sharks 3) Blackhawks 4) Kings 5) Coyotes

Posted by: TimDz | February 8, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Furthermore...I love seeing the Caps win. Winning many games in a row is fun. But as I had to point out to the bandwagon yesterday, you do not get a trophy, prize, or cookie for the long regular season win streak...put up 14 games in the playoffs, and you're pretty damned close to a piece of hardware...but now...it means little other than the team is playing well. that's all. bigger things to focus on.

Posted by: netminder71 | February 8, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

youaresquishy: The Caps right now have 22 players on their NHL roster. A team is allowed to have either 22 or 23; as such, we can add one player. Two guys were scratched yesterday - Laing and Erskine.

One player can be added to get to 23. Of the 20 active skaters, none can be sent to Hershey. There's cap room a' plenty for a low-paid guy, so you could bring up either Carlson or Alzner to get to 23. Either/or.

Alzner is at Hershey to get in the required games so he can play there during the Olympic break. Carlson will be in Hershey then as well. After the break, you can bring up either one (not both unless injury). Somehow I have the impression that Alzner has been told he will be recalled after the break. I think he is first in line and Carlson second. To bring up Carlson and leave Alzner behind might cause issues going forward. Also, you don't want to bring up either one and have them sit in the press box, that's contrary to their development.

Carlson will be recalled if there's an injury to the blueline, otherwise I think the plan is to have Alzner come back on March 3rd.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

netminder71:

I would be ecstatic if the Caps won the Presidents' Trophy but failed to win the Cup.

I know the playoff systems in American sports are commonly thought of as the only determinant of "THE champion." But I think of playoffs more like a separate tournament.

In the NHL, you have to beat just four teams to win the Cup, any of whom your team might just not match up that well against. In the regular season, the actual best team is more likely than in the playoffs to rise to the top just because it involves a bigger sample size and games against most or all of the 29 other teams.

I really like how Premier League soccer in the UK does it, where every team plays every other team twice, and the champion is just the one who finishes at the top of the standings at the end. Because why play all those games if the ONLY point is to eliminate a few teams from entry into a tournament?

In the NHL, teams don't play every other team the same number of times, so the regular season isn't AS interesting as it is in the Premier League, and just the fact that people don't really care about who finishes atop the standings that much makes the teams themselves not care about it all that much, but the top team does get home ice throughout the playoffs, so there is some incentive there, and I think, all things considered, it's still a better method of determining which team is the best than are the playoffs.

According to wikipedia, the Presidents' Trophy "was introduced at the start of the 1985–86 NHL season by the league's Board of Governors. Prior to this, the best team in the league during the regular season was allowed to hang a banner stating 'NHL League Champions.' "

If you don't believe it, check out the Edmonton Oilers' "NHL League Champions" banner: http://www.classicauctions.net/Default.aspx?tabid=263&auctionid=23&lotid=4

In my view, the word "champion" should be used for both the top team in the standings at the end of the Regular Season and for the winner of the post-season Stanley Cup tournament, just like it used to be.

So, when people say things like, y'know, "Doing well in the regular season doesn't matter--all that matters is the Stanley Cup," I cringe. I think, y'know, that attitude certainly adds a little to the intensity involved in watching and playing in the playoffs, but I think it's kind of silly to just not care at all about the champion of the regular season. I think winning the Presidents' Trophy is A championship, well worthy of celebrating, in a way that is completely separate from the Stanley Cup championship. To me, I care a little more about the Cup, but arguably, I should care more about the Presidents' Trophy.

And right now, Caps are ahead of San Jose by 3 points, and they only have 1 game in hand. It's very exciting to me. I'm sure I'm almost the only one though.

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Rhino40: Speaking of great Ovi comments, you really gotta love the one he made recently on why the Caps wanted to get the empty-netter (which was then the fifth goal of the game for them):

"We wanted to give fans the free wings."

Whichever place it is that gives out the Wings really should get him in their promos. They should show the marketing director or whomever a the wing place trying to "sabotage" Ovi to keep him from getting the fifth goal - this guy would be shown getting caught breaking Ovi's sticks, dulling his skate blades, whatever, and then, of course, he would get stampeded in the end by Caps fans rushing into the store after the game for the free wings. "Oh, no! Not again! Another month's profits down the drain!"

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

I'll take Alzner. Going just from their offensive stats in Hershey, it seems clear that Carlson is more of a puck-moving, shooting, and otherwise offensive type. I guess what Caps need most is more of a defensive defenseman like Alzner.

So, assuming Caps don't rent one, I'm fine with Alzner being the defensive defenseman Caps get for the playoff run. I think Caps have a really good chance at getting to the finals without making any more trades, and once there, anything could happen. It will definitely be interesting to see how much better the Devils are with Kovalchuk though.

Posted by: youaresquishy | February 8, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

squishy: My gut tells me your above analysis isn't far off and Kovalchuk fails to be the Devils' panacea.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

That sounds like a great promotional idea. Use Ovi.

BTW, the place giving out free wings is a chain restaurant named "Glory Days". Whenever the Caps score their 5th goal, they play Bruce Springsteen's song by that name. (I have no idea if they played it yesterday when Knuble scored his game winner.)

I ended up eating my tickets since I couldn't get out of our subdivision. (If they had postponed the game until today, I could have gone w/o any problem.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

@squishy...

Not saying I am not excited, happy, elated, ecstatic...over the recent successes...

BUT a banner stating you won the regular season IS NOT a STANLEY CUP. End of argument.

The Caps made little fanfare for the SE Division title...because it means nothing.

It is also an apples and oranges argument to put EPL soccer and NHL Hockey in the same statement. Different games, different amount of teams, different season lengths, etc,etc...

The goal for almost 100 years has been to raise the Stanley Cup. I want that. Anything else is deemed a failure.

Imagine, all arguments aside, what raising that trophy would mean to Caps fans. Old ones, young ones, new ones, any and all Caps fans...

Now compare that to winning the President's Trophy and getting bounced by Pitt, Philly, or New Jersey...or a Western foe in the SC Finals?

I didn't think they would feel the same...and they prob. don't. I remember watching the Wings skate the Cup around our building...I was happy for the Caps because we were there...but it was no victory.

No second prize my friend...

Posted by: netminder71 | February 8, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

While Kovalchuk is certainly an upgrade for the Devils, does it mean they are more ready for "playoff hockey" with him than they were before?

It will certainly improve their chances of winning their division.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

GLORY DAYS was indeed played yesterday as we celebrated Knuble's goal...the wings just taste sweeter when the are cut from the Penguins flesh.

Posted by: netminder71 | February 8, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Rhino40: Speaking of great Ovi comments, you really gotta love the one he made recently on why the Caps wanted to get the empty-netter (which was then the fifth goal of the game for them):

"We wanted to give fans the free wings."

Whichever place it is that gives out the Wings really should get him in their promos. They should show the marketing director or whomever a the wing place trying to "sabotage" Ovi to keep him from getting the fifth goal - this guy would be shown getting caught breaking Ovi's sticks, dulling his skate blades, whatever, and then, of course, he would get stampeded in the end by Caps fans rushing into the store after the game for the free wings. "Oh, no! Not again! Another month's profits down the drain!"

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 3:34 PM


@tominfl1:

Ah, there you are my friend.

Memories of Papa Johns' "PIZZA ON ICE" promo from the Bonzai days...:)

Posted by: Rhino40 | February 8, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

anyone remember the Jerry's Subs and Pizza FREE pizzas for 6 goals days?

what about the way old Wendy's free burgers days....?

Posted by: netminder71 | February 8, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Rhino40: Yes, I remember starting the pizza chant back in the day. It took 6 goals for pizza.

"I ended up eating my tickets since I couldn't get out of our subdivision."

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 3:53 PM

CF75: Rather than eating your tickets, you can still convert them, unused, into the free wings and eat them instead.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

@netminder71

Yes, they do. (And when Orpik, the hypocritical, whining #$#$#$ is in the penalty box watching.)

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 8, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

And here's an even older promotion. I worked at Gino's back in the 70s. Now, they had a promotion for Baltimore Colts game to get 25 cents off a Gino Giant with your ticket stub. I went into Memorial Stadium once the day after a Colts victory and collected a few hundred stubs off the ground. Then went to my boss at Gino's and showed him the stubs and we hatched a little scheme. That particular store sure sold lots of discounted Giants that week.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 8, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Tarik,

I just finished watching a replay of the game because I had the great fortune of actually being there in person. I just watched two of the controversial plays of the game, the Orpik high stick (looked like a high stick to me) and the Schultz slash. I found out during the in-house replay that is was an awful call, but I did not realize at the time that one of the referees was literally 2 feet from the alledged infraction when it took place and he did not make the call.
The one question that I would love to have answered if you ever get the opportunity to ask it is this...
If a referee has a clear view of an obvious bad call why would he not overrule the call? He had to know that was not a slash but he put the outcome of the game in jeopardy by not making the correct call. Is it the practice of NHL officials to attempt to cover up the mistakes of another official? Or, is the goal to make sure the correct call is made on the ice at all times? Fortunately, the call did not cost the Capitals the game, but it is a question that needs to be asked.

Posted by: krwatson | February 8, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

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