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Today's game: Flyers at Caps

Jose Theodore is set to make his second straight start this afternoon as the Caps seek their third win in a row and sixth victory in seven games. Ray Emery, meantime, will be in net for the resurgent Flyers.

Emery, who is coming off abdominal surgery, will be making his first start since getting pulled in a 8-2 loss the last time these teams met on Dec. 5. For the Caps, defensemen Brian Pothier and John Erskine are out again because of injury.

The rest of the lineup should look the same:

Forwards
Ovechkin-Backstrom-Knuble
Laich-Fleischmann-Semin
Chimera-Morrison-Fehr
Gordon-Steckel-Bradley

Defense
Schultz-Green
Sloan-Poti
Morrisonn-Carlson

Goalies
Theodore
Neuvirth

A couple of additional notes:

*John Erskine (upper-body injury) skated on his own at KCI this morning and "feels a lot better," according to Coach Bruce Boudreau. But the tough defenseman still isn't well enough to play.

*Boudreau said he had not spoken to Pothier today but is under the impression that he "is no better than he was yesterday." Pothier was injured in Florida blocking a shot.

*Boudreau also said he believes the Flyers (8-2-1 in their last 11 games) are just hitting their stride and are a team "you don't want to face in the first round." Philly, however, will be looking to bounce back from a 4-0 loss in Toronto in Thursday.

I'll have more after the game.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  January 17, 2010; 1:51 PM ET
 | Tags: Philadelphia Flyers  
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Next: Caps 5, Flyers 3

Comments

Wow...First! That's never happened to me before

Posted by: jmurray019 | January 17, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Go Caps!!!

Posted by: cbs75 | January 17, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Oof.

Rough news for Pothier and Erskine.

Let's hope the boys keep the pedal to the metal again tonight.

Posted by: irockthered | January 17, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Hope this is a good old fashion "Patrick Division" showdown with hits and goals, bad blood and shoving matches, fights and Caps fans chanting "EEEEMMMMEERYYYYY!"

Posted by: jmurray019 | January 17, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

not "EEEEMMMMEERYYYYY", it's "HEEEEEEEEEEXTAAAAAAALLLLL", lol

Posted by: sargeantmofo | January 17, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Would love to see Carlson continue his strong play, and for Brooksie to pull it together.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Pretty gutsy move to put Emery back in his first game back.

(pun on the abdominal surgery unintended, but it works)

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Would love to see Carlson continue his strong play, and for Brooksie to pull it together.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse
-------------
Same here.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

i wanna see chimera pound some bastards and Theodore be a wall. go caps!

Posted by: j762 | January 17, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Also for Theo to continue his solid performance

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

And for Ovi to stay hot, Semin to score 2, BMo to light it up, Fehr to score again, Schultz to go +4 . . .

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Knuble Hat trick against his old mates

Posted by: Capsnskins1 | January 17, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

How about for each player on the team to score at least one point.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

What injury does Emery magically come up with if he gets lit up again.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

@icehammer

either capsitis or ovechkatosis

Posted by: realoldcapsfan | January 17, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Here's Matt Bradley regarding the toughness of the team:

"we're not the toughest team but we're willing to stick up for each other."

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

just want to thank the caps fans that made the trip last night...good many there...i believe goat was there with the horn? andthey also did the all your fault chant after home goals. nothing like havin the verizon center faithful in the giant center

Posted by: bearsfan26 | January 17, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Sorry to see Jose let that one in.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Why do goalies these days never keep their stick between their legs like they should.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

ugh - not a good omen

Posted by: ebolean1 | January 17, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

omen shmomen

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

beautiful! knuble is on a roll!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

wow - what a pass!

Posted by: ebolean1 | January 17, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Knuble!

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

there is one against the old team

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

KNUBLE!

Turning it on since they put him back up with Ovi. I like that this makes it hard for Boudreau to put OBS back together.

Posted by: butcherbaker | January 17, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

ya gotta clear the freakin puck - jebus!

Posted by: ebolean1 | January 17, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

ugh. bradley didn't want to get hit, that's why the puck got turned over. theodore's gotta have that, no ifs, ands, or buts.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Bradley gave up the puck awfully easy on the Flyers second goal.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Theo can't seem to stop anything today...

Posted by: joek443 | January 17, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

just because there's a bad turnover, doesn't mean your goalie has to roll over either...

Posted by: joek443 | January 17, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

where can I find the live stream???????

Posted by: caps4life2 | January 17, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

theo needed to have that cuz that was from long range and it wasn't a particularly hard shot. it was actually kinda weak. nonetheless, theo must have that one. i'm so scared he's turning back to threeormore. the first goal he let in wasn't great either.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Theo screened on the second goal? Bottom line is don't cough up the puck.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

BROOKSIE!

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

YES BROOKS! couldn't happen to a better person!!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

neiher goalie looks real sharp

Posted by: ebolean1 | January 17, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Would love to see Carlson continue his strong play, and for Brooksie to pull it together.

Posted by: Sonyask |

there u go! drought for him is over

Posted by: jmurray019 | January 17, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Finally Brooksie!

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

I don't blame Theo for that second goal -- screened on the PP

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Yeah you can't blame Theo on goal #2. Brads turned it over because he heard footsteps and then 55 and 52 were both blocking Jose's view.

Posted by: Aldred15 | January 17, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

The defense and goaltending are taking the afternoon off folks. I predict 8 - 7 Caps.

Good old fashing shootout!!!

brooksie and Knuble with 3 each!!!

Posted by: bigschu8 | January 17, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

what a pass by Semin!

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

too many passes

Posted by: joek443 | January 17, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Brads is not having a great game. He's been turning pucks over a lot.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

The Caps struggling to deal with a good opposing forecheck...

again.

You can't have this problem along with average goaltending and expect to be a good defensive team.

This is what Pittsburgh did to us in the playoffs last season to turn things around for them. They just killed us with their forecheck.

The only player on this team I trust to make good decisions on a consistent basis in our own end is Backstrom.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

The other thing about the Flyer's second goal is that the Caps defender (don't know who) in front of the shooter gave him too much time and space to pick his spot.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

If I'm an opposing coach playing the Capitals, I keep it simple. I say dump it in and forecheck hard. The Caps defense will make more mistakes than most teams under pressure in their own end.

I remember former Flyers coach Stevens mentioning it after a game last season. He talked about dumping it in and putting pressure on our defense because he knew that was the way to get to the Capitals and minimize their scoring chances at the other end.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Got to give credit where credit is due. The Flyers forecheck was good the first period. However, the game is tied and the Caps are coming on.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Semin is a magician.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

@FloridaCapsFan

I think it was Gordon kneeling down but the scoring chance was started by the Flyers putting extra pressure on with their forecheck. That led to Bradley making a bad decision with the puck and turning it over.

Forecheck the Caps enough and they'll make more mistakes than most teams in their own end.

I can only imagine how much better our already strong offense could be if we were better at bringing the puck out of our own end and neutralizing opposing forechecks.

Backstrom is one of only a couple of players (and maybe the only one) on our team that is consistently good with the puck on his stick in our defensive zone.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

It wasn't just that the Flyers forecheck is good.

While that is true, you combine that with the fact that the Caps are a well below average team at dealing with forechecks and you get these results in our own end.

We either need to have a top-tier goaltender cleaing up our mistakes or find a way through personnel changes to improve our ability to handle the forecheck.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

tmac2yao,

I agree it's a weakness. I expect the Caps are addressing it somehow. We cannot expect it to get better overnight.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I don't know if it's a lack of speed or grit or skill or a combination of those factors but our current defensive corps, along with certain forwards, just aren't good at dealing with opposing forechecks, winning pucks in our own end and making good decisions when they do get the puck.

These problems lead to our struggles both with handling opposing forechecks and killing off penalties to various degrees.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Why was Briere all alone in front of Theo on that last Flyers shot?

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

what is surprising for me is that Philly hasn't been called for a penality yet.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

hartnell is so nasty!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Bradley looked like a real grinder there.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Pronger almost got Greenie there.

Posted by: bigschu8 | January 17, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Lets see if our PP can stay hot against these guys

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

YES ALEX SEMIN!!!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

beeee-ute

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | January 17, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I almost didn't finishing typing it

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

doesn't look like Semin's wrist is bothering him much. LIke I said friday night, Semin has been playing great these past few games. Nice to see him rewarded.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Quick question what is it the Caps fans keep chanting after we get a 3rd goal? I don't get to many games but noticed it when I went to the Carolina game and just heard it again.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

BUZZZZZZING!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | January 17, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

terrific defensive play by Greener

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Nice D there by Greene

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Excellent D by Green on Hartnell

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | January 17, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

@icehammer - its actually after every goal. They count the number of goals let up and then say "all your fault".

Posted by: AlexVa1 | January 17, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Now that he is a Cap, I really enjoy watching Chimera.

Posted by: uncatim | January 17, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Green made two very good plays. The backcheck on Hartnell speaks for itself, but the play to wrist the puck at the net is something the Caps need to do more on the PP. We have seen them try to force the puck somewhere it doesn't belong too many times on the power plays, and it was good to see Green make the smart play and get the puck to the net. He's having a great game so far.

Posted by: Aldred15 | January 17, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Carlson has had a more impressive game, than Friday night.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

@AlexVa1 Thanks.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

@icehammer,

There are a group of fans that chant the number of goals "1, 2, 3...all your fault" at the goalie.

Posted by: saintex | January 17, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Wow got lucky there we need this kill too.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

bunch of no-calls for philly. come on refs, let's call this game right.

Posted by: cbs75 | January 17, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

again, why is a Flyers player all alone in the crease?

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Interesting that we used Sloan and Green on the PK together. I guess that is wht we had to do with Shultz in the box.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Looked like a cross check to the head there.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

EXCUSE ME

BACKSTROM JUST GOT HIS A** KICKED IN THE CORNER!?!?!?!

WHERES THE PENALTY?

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | January 17, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

When did they change the rule so that a cross check to the back of the head is no longer a penalty? I missed that.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

it's been like that all game. philly taking liberties, and no penalty called.

Posted by: cbs75 | January 17, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

good period!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

he got kabonged at least once while he was down

Posted by: ebolean1 | January 17, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Semin is still on a roll, in terms of overall play. He could have a nice Olympics (knock on wood).

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Flyers' fans complaining that the refs are favoring Caps.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

that pizza looks good.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Flyers' fans complaining that the refs are favoring Caps.

Posted by: elicea

how are they favoring us? They have 3 PP opportunities and we have 2. And they missed the crosscheck on Backstrom.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Semin continuing his outstanding play.

Green playing well in both ends.

Gordon is doing a lot of little things well.

Fleischmann not having a very good game. He seems a bit nervous out there. He seems to get like that every now and then but it's becoming less of an issue.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Flyers' fans complaining that the refs are favoring Caps.

Posted by: elicea

how are they favoring us? They have 3 PP opportunities and we have 2. And they missed the crosscheck on Backstrom.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Actually it is 2-1 with one 4 on 4 in there.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

how are they favoring us? They have 3 PP opportunities and we have 2. And they missed the crosscheck on Backstrom.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse
----------
exactly what I was thinking. Here's what they're saying:


"The hit on OKT was obviously very late, and then they call a hook on Carter going for puck. I think he even got the puck during the play he was penalized for.

The refs are something else."

"these refs are garbage.."

"ok so the y missed.. 2 late hits by Bradley... a Crosscheck on Carcillo... gave Carter a weak penalty and Hartnell forgot how to skate.. did I miss anything?"

and so on...

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Semin has to be among the best handful of wings in the league when it comes to vision and passing skills.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

icehammer97: Oh yeah, you're right. I knew that seemed wrong. But the refs are not favoring the Flyers.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

That was close

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

What a weak call. The Refs are really calling it one sided.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Sloan. What are you doing?
He hasn't been very good since returning to the line-up.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Caps are getting sloppy.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Nice try Fuzzy Wuzzy this isn't soccer even with all of the diving you guys are doing

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

What's up Brooksie!

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

I LOVE BROOKSIEEEEEEEEEE

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Agree on Semin. Incredible.

I thought the call on Carter was pretty marginal, actually.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Whoooo Brooks

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Nice dive, Briere. And eat crap Hartnell, you ugly bastid! Wooooo, Brooksie with the shortie!

Posted by: Chase4 | January 17, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

I just love shorties!

Posted by: uncatim | January 17, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

that was sweeeeeeeet

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | January 17, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

The Laich goal was complete karma-justice. Briere embellished the "roughing" call, which was much less "rough" than the cross check to Backstrom.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Woo-Hoo! Brooksie's out of the slump

Posted by: jmurray019 | January 17, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

That looked like a play our PP would have tried

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

OMG stupid refs!! Are they STILL favoring the Caps now?? STupid!!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Great news -- I'm on a bit of delay, just wa\tching the Hartnell wash out. Go Brooks!

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Sloan. What are you doing?
He hasn't been very good since returning to the line-up.

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Not sure what Sloan did wrong he hit the guy who just had the puck if he didn't fall there would have been no call but Philly dives for a call again

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

The refs are doing all they can to keep this one close. NHL officiating - by far the worst of any professional sport (I exclude pro wresting).

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

The refs do know that this is a checking game right?

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Refs tryin to help out the flyers...

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

The refs are doing all they can to keep this one close. NHL officiating - by far the worst of any professional sport (I exclude pro wresting).

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Like yesterday with the Red Wings and the shootout "goal" what a joke when they get to use replay and still mess up the call

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Jose has been really good after the flyer's two goals.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

ahh too far for Ovechkin

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

The thing I like about Carlson is when he does rush and has nothing he makes a smart play and stays back where Green tries to do too much and often gives up an odd man rush the other way

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

I was shocked that VanRiemsdyk didn't draw a tripping penalty when he fell down untouched behind the Caps goal.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:14 PM | Report abuse

rachel216 yeah Theo has kept us in the game after the second one and been the reason they are down two even with outshooting us bigtime.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

I was shocked that VanRiemsdyk didn't draw a tripping penalty when he fell down untouched behind the Caps goal.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:14 PM

Yeah, I was expecting a BS call too.

Posted by: Chase4 | January 17, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

With Brooks back, that second line really gets to click. With the way the third line been's playing that's three serious scoring lines.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 5:20 PM | Report abuse

icehammer97: Yup! SOG are now Flyers 30 Caps 18

yay theo!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:21 PM | Report abuse

e.g., that chance right there for fehr to chimera

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Nice job Ovie

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Let's go Ovechkin put this one out of reach

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Penalty shot. cmon O\vi

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Woo!

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

DAGGGGGERRR!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | January 17, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

beauty of a shot

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Beautiful shot OVECHKIN!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Kind of a walk in the park by Ovi there, wasn't it? Very nonchalant.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

There is him finally getting a penality shot goal.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Hockey hockey
Joy joy!

Posted by: uncatim | January 17, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Emery.... Emery...

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

EV, PP, SH, and penalty shot goals! Yay!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Against the evil ones..!

Posted by: uncatim | January 17, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Pulling the goalie down 3?

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Too late no one cares.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Congrats to the little St. Louis wannabe...

I hate both of them

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | January 17, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

that sucks for theo - green left the imp wide open

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | January 17, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Theo had to keep his name of Threeormore but if he wasn't on his game it could have been a loss.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Last goal ruined Theo's good stats. ;(

But he was amazing today.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

EV, PP, SH, and penalty shot goals! Yay!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Mario Lemieux once scored all those kinds of goals plus an empty netter in one game

A great win but the PK still sux :(

Posted by: joek443 | January 17, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

yeah Capt_Kirk_in_AZ but it was a 6 on 4 so there is only so much the guys could do. Still got the win and Theo should have earned another start against the Wings.

Posted by: icehammer97 | January 17, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

I thought the Caps pulled it together nicely. We started off sloppy and Philly was working very hard. Good to get the W.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

A few thoughts

-Semin continues his strong performance.
-A bit shaky in the first but Theodore settled down as the game progressed
-Calrson continues to impress
-Happy to see Brooks end his slump

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Solid win. Funny how the Caps got just one PP against a team like Philly. But we were 100%. JT to start on Tue.

Posted by: cbs75 | January 17, 2010 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Well for the second and third periods I thought the Caps handled the forecheck effectively and killed off some penalties by clearing the puck smartly (plus the short-handed goal was nice). The Caps forechecking woes may just be because they try to bring the puck out under control plus the forwards are not always back there to help. Good win!

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, the PP's for our opposition compared to the lack or PP's for us is ridiculous. The league would not allow teams to play the Pens or the Hawks like this

Posted by: jmurray019 | January 17, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

JT was MONEY!

We let him down in the end, and that happens too often.

Brooks NEEDED that.

Go 2nd Line! Go Semin! Flash still needs faceoff work.

I like that we appear to have 3 lines that have been working for a few games. Lets continue to strive for consistency!

I dont worry about our holes right now, we all see them. We have to trust that GMGM sees and will fix them. He has done pretty good by us so far.

FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE!!!

GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: wtf_e_fehr | January 17, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Ovechkin is playing some of the best hockey of his career recently in terms of overall play.

Better backchecking, better decisions with the puck, better passes...

He even scored a penalty shot for the first time. I don't think there's a relationship with the other things but it's fitting with everything else he's doing right.

We took a few terrible unforced penalties in this game that gave them extra scoring chances.

Early on, we struggled with their forecheck but it seemed like they either ran out of gas after the first period or we tightened up or even more likely, both of those things.

I think Philly put all their eggs in one basket looking back. They figured they'd use up all their energy in the first to put us behind the 8-ball early. Fortunately, we managed to keep it tied going into the second and they didn't seem to be able to maintain their aggressive forecheck. If we avoided the silly penalties and thus the unnecessary penalty killing, the score might have been 6 or 7 to 2.

That sucked for Theo. That was a really nice pass by Richards but I think Green needs to either react better or stay closer to the guy on the far post.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 5:48 PM | Report abuse

The refs are doing all they can to keep this one close. NHL officiating - by far the worst of any professional sport (I exclude pro wresting).

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse
*********************

NHL is a close second to the NBA in lousy and inconsistent officiating...The NBA is the worst!!

Posted by: JCB9 | January 17, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse

The Caps were shorthanded 5 times, the Flyers 1 time. The Flyers scored on two of their opportunities, so we killed 3/5 PPs or 60%. Needs to be better.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, the PP's for our opposition compared to the lack or PP's for us is ridiculous. The league would not allow teams to play the Pens or the Hawks like this

Posted by: jmurray019 | January 17, 2010 5:42 PM

Yea, they'd never call more penalties on the Penguins than their opponent.

Well, other than less than 24 hours ago: http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20092010/GS020718.HTM

People need to get over this conspiracy theory. The Penguins are usually a hard-working team and they earn the calls.

That's what happened in the playoffs last season as hard as it is for some of you to admit. The Penguins forechecked and backchecked themselves back into that series. If we could've have done the same or at least neutralized their forecheck better, there would have been less penalties called against us and the series would have been over in 4 or 5 games. That Game 7 meltdown would have never even happened.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

@JCB9 - You might have me there. The NBA has refs actually betting on their games.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

POSTGAME THOUGHTS: Broadsheet Bullies bullied by the Caps. Only caught the 3rd period but have it taped.

Welcome back Brooks Laich. Nice to see Knubs get one against the former team.

Oh yea - welcome back Mr. Emery - weren't you glad to see the same team you last played against? Swiss cheese.

Ovie - way to punctuate and finish off a solid victory.

Theodore - looking rock solid in that final 20 minutes.

A good back and forth game but another solid all-around effort. Let's keep this train rolling.

Back to the phone booth as the Red Wings come flying in - time for payback for that game the Caps deserved to win in Detroit.

It's been a two point afternoon/evening.

ICE BREAKERS GOAL SHAKERS.

Posted by: Jonathan6 | January 17, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

I'm liking the 30-12-6 record.

I'm not liking the 136 goals against.

I think we can win the Cup this season, regardless of who is in net (that includes Theodore), if we figure out a way to neutralize forechecks better.

If we can accomplish that, I think it will also result in us taking less penalties taken and killing off penalties more efficiently.

If you improve at stifling forechecks, you spend less time trapped in your own and, thus, take fewer penalties in the defensive zone.

Additionally, some of the same skills you need to handle forechecks (getting to pucks first, winning battles along the boards, making good, quick decisions with the puck under pressure, etc...) would carry over to our penalty killing.

Whether we can take this step forward with the current personnel, I don't know, but I do think it is the number one area to address as we approach the playoffs. If we can address it internally, great. If not, hopefully GMGM will find what we need through trade.

Posted by: tmac2yao | January 17, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Yes we can do better on the PK but in this game the last goal was 6 on 4. I thought that our PK has been improving significantly in recent games.

I thought the Caps played the sloppiest game since the first period against the Panthers, but they improved as the game went on. Not much reason to criticize this win.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 6:08 PM | Report abuse

Not criticizing, read previous post.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Caps now have the most points in the east, though both the Devils and the Sabres have two games in hand.

136 Goals Against isn't great, but the +46 goal differential is second only to Chicago.

Brooksie's coming back is huge -- 1st 2nd and 3rd lines currently looking very impressive.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

You know if Schultz is the best +/- in the league, and Semin is playing like a god, and Jose's stringing together wins, and Green's making excellent defensive plays, who's going to get pummelled with criticism?

Somehow "BMo sucks" doesn't have much ring to it.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse

On twitter:

Ovi on the amount of offense lately - "I just wanted to give the fans free chicken wings"

I LOVE OVIE!!!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Not criticizing, read previous post.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't calling anyone out.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Not criticizing, read previous post.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't calling anyone out.

Posted by: Sonyask | January 17, 2010 6:19 PM


Alrighty then. Not much negative about this game from a Caps perspective. Plus, a lot of positives.

Posted by: FloridaCapsFan | January 17, 2010 6:27 PM | Report abuse

All the Caps goals were scored from very close in. This team seems to have finally learned that the griding goals in front of the net count just as much as the artistic one timers. I give Knuble a lot of credit for that. He has shown them the way.

Posted by: ccCapsfan | January 17, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

tmac2yao: I disagree with you. I watched the games last year, Caps vs Pens, and have watched replays once or twice per game. No way did the Pens deserve a 37-19 PP advantage. I will grant you they worked harder. That translates to 1-2 per game at most, not 18 over 7 games. My crying could be perceived as homerism except the Pens (especially with McCreary reffing) got the same advantage in the ECF and the SCF. I'm not saying conspiracy. I'm saying McCreary has a super mancrush the size of Texas on Cindy Crysby.

Posted by: tominfl1 | January 17, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

On twitter:

Ovi on the amount of offense lately - "I just wanted to give the fans free chicken wings"

I LOVE OVIE!!!

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse
----------
haha. That's great

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 7:39 PM | Report abuse

Nothing sweeter than watching the Flyers fans grow quieter and quieter as the game progressed. Makes the win that much better!

Posted by: gonchpup | January 17, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

OV is awesome...free chicken wings. Speaking of which...I need to get mine from the Toronto game on Friday. Who got the hard hat?

Posted by: CapsSkins | January 17, 2010 7:46 PM | Report abuse

I think Sha Mo got the hard hat... not completely sure. Could be completely wrong.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Green made a fantastic play, I think in the second period, when he single-handedly stole the puck from Hartnell on a break-away that, I believe, would have resulted in a goal.

Ovie is playing, as some peopled said, the best games in his life. Why, then, is he not scoring more?

Posted by: caraveli | January 17, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Forgive me if this is tardy...

No update here?...I endured the Metro shuffle at Grosvner

Posted by: ralCapsFan | January 17, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse

wasn't there supposed to be an article from Tarik about Chimera...or did I miss it already? Want to learn more about him! Great trade addition.

Posted by: CapsSkins | January 17, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Why, then, is he not scoring more?

Posted by: caraveli | January 17, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse
-----------
Hasn't he scored more goals at this period of the season than around the same period last season?

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

The C on Ovi's chest has made quite a difference. His forechecking/backchecking/and playmaking ability have been on point the last 6/7 games.

Posted by: BACKS | January 17, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

CapsSkins

There is an article on Chimera in today's Sports section on the Post. I almost missed it myself, I think because there was no picture to draw attention to.

Posted by: caraveli | January 17, 2010 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Ovie is playing, as some peopled said, the best games in his life. Why, then, is he not scoring more?

Posted by: caraveli

His defense has been great lately. He's been dishing out a lot of assists lately as well. No worries, he'll score more. He scored today! (On a penalty shot, but still counts toward his goal total.)

CapsSkins: Tarik's article-

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/01/16/AR2010011602405.html

Posted by: rachel216 | January 17, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse

@TMAC "I'm liking the 30-12-6 record.

I'm not liking the 136 goals against.

I think we can win the Cup this season, regardless of who is in net (that includes Theodore), if we figure out a way to neutralize forechecks better.

If we can accomplish that, I think it will also result in us taking less penalties taken and killing off penalties more efficiently."

I respectfully disagree on 2 of your 3 points. I agree if we are able to handle the forecheck better and neutral zone play our penalties can deminish. Regardless you're going to have penalties though. I flat do not think ANY team in this league will win a Cup with Theo in net. The absolute #1 glaring weakness we have is the PK. We are ranked 23rd out of 30 frickin teams! Are you kidding me? You're not gonna win the Cup with the kind of PK period.
At the beginning of the yr I wanted to give our PK time under our new PK coach and see how the additions of BMo and Knuble would help. Well I think it's safe to say now that they haven't in the PK area. Our PK can be much better IMO if the right personnel is killing penalties. We have the wrong guys at the wrong times out there. The #1 thing we need is Laing up top blocking shots.
Also the forecheck can be handled better with coaching and awareness. All that is is gap play which is simply resolved. We play a long gap type of play which gives us the run and gun offense but when you're getting pinned back you need to close these gaps.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | January 17, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of special teams, CHI is top 5 in PP, PK, goals scored and GPG. That needless to say is strong. I would think if we were to face them in the finals that thier PP vs. our PK would be the difference in the series. I did some research at the beginning of the yr and if memory serves me correctly no team has won the Cup in well over 10yrs that wasn't ranked in the top 10 in PK during the regular season.
We'll be fine with Varly in net (if healthy) and I believe GMGM will upgrade our D by the deadline but the PK has GOT to improve for the playoffs.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | January 17, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

they might have to think about putting Ovie on the PK and see if he can make a difference

Posted by: joek443 | January 17, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

I don't know about OV but I sure like Backs and Semin up there. I think Brads is a must have as well as Laing. Laing disrupts so much on the PK and the other teams know it. They know he's gonna go down so they hesitate and look to pass instead of shoot.
I don't think OV is the right one though. That means you'd lose ice time from him somewhere else and I don't think that's smart. You need speed on the PK and Backs, Semin, Brads and Laing provide that up front. Steckel doesn't but he'll win the draw. So have him win the draw and get off when cleared.

Posted by: pokerface1208 | January 17, 2010 8:22 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't use Ovie as one of my top 4 regular PK forwards but I would use him on 1 or 2 selective PKs/game.

you might as well try everything at this point because whatever they've been doing is just NOT working

Posted by: joek443 | January 17, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

PK is the #1 problem area. In this case, the statistics don't lie. GMGM may bring in someone to help there, but adding one person may not be enough. There may be system issues.

Posted by: zmega | January 17, 2010 8:30 PM | Report abuse

The Bears win again, 4-3. Aucoin, Giroux, Bourque and Wilson all score. They are so hot they are on fire!

Posted by: MReilly9 | January 17, 2010 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Jack Bauer and "24" are back on tv in about 20 minutes...

Posted by: MReilly9 | January 17, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: elicea | January 17, 2010 8:38 PM | Report abuse

the Pens occasionally throw Crosby and Malkin out there on the PK when they need to score... Crosby scored his first shortie earlier this season

the top 3 short-handed goal scorers in the NHL are guys named Gretzky, Messier and Lemieux - NOT exactly known as PK specialists when they played

Posted by: joek443 | January 17, 2010 8:38 PM | Report abuse

There was a nice interview of Brooks Laich on the NHL Network's "NHL On the Fly" nightly show tonight. Just ran a few minutes ago.

Posted by: MReilly9 | January 17, 2010 8:59 PM | Report abuse

There was a nice interview of Brooks Laich on the NHL Network's "NHL On the Fly" nightly show tonight. Just ran a few minutes ago

live TV link http://www.nowgoal.com/22.shtml

Posted by: bgfgf402 | January 20, 2010 1:03 AM | Report abuse

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