Brashear: "Why Wouldn't We Win This One"
Donald Brashear just came off the ice, skating with his teammates at Mellon Arena for the first time in this series. He stayed out for extra work with the other likely scratches, said "probably not" about being active tonight, but said "don't ask me, I'm not the coach" when asked why. Still, he expressed the same general attitude of his teammates when asked about the progress of this series.
"I'm watching like everybody else, hoping they're gonna win," he said. "I feel that we can win this series. I mean, we won the last one, why wouldn't we win this one? We won three in a row to get to this one. So it's a different opponent, but it doesn't matter. It's the same situation, it's a must-win situation, and we're usually good in those games. So I'm pretty confident about the success of our team."
(Note: On the way here, we heard Pittsburgh sports-talkers call Alex Ovechkin "Ochumpkin," heard them sing "My Bologna has a first name, it's B-R-U-C-E" in reference to the coach, heard them say the Caps haven't stopped complaining since this series started, and heard them say that the paranoia from years of franchise failure has infected the players' heads.
They also said defense was one player's "fort." They also taught me that "forte" can actually be pronounced "fort." I do love that medium. )
(Note: In fairness, I guess I should also say I love the newspaper medium. Here's Mark Madden writing in the Beaver County Times about Alex Ovechkin:
As one of hockey's 'it' players, Ovechkin has carte blanche for everything from boorish behavior to crippling collisions....Ovechkin's sadistic streak makes you think he's mentally unhinged.....Finish the job tonight. Leave Ovechkin to ponder being knocked out of the playoffs by Malkin and Sidney Crosby. To wrestle with his own guilty conscience. That's the best revenge.
As for his role here in Pittsburgh, Brashear said "sometimes just coming around and pushing them, [trying] to put some positive thoughts in their heads and keep the atmosphere just a little bit more fun or more relaxed," can be of some use in the playoffs.
"It's just another game," he continued. "It's a big game, but it's another game, and we've just got to do the things we're used to doing and that's about it....With the two games we played at home we came out really hard, and the two games here they came out really hard and they were desperate a little more than we were. They knew they had to play their best games to beat us, and they did, and they beat us."
As for being forced to the sidelines for what could turn out to be his final playoff series with the Caps, "that's just the way it goes, you know?" he said. "I don't live in the past."
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