Photo credit: Greg Fiume
This final game of the homestand, a division face-off between the Washington Capitals and Tampa Bay Lightning held the highest of stakes. A win would keep the Capitals competitive in the playoff race. A loss would make things bleak. How did it go down?
Well, Keith Aucoin scored the game’s first goal, a very lucky deflection off Karl Alzner’s shot. Ryan Malone evened it up with a power-play skate deflection. John Carlson delivered the own-goal for Purcell to give Tampa a lead going into the third.
With less than five minutes to go, Marcus Johansson nabbed a bad clear and beat the rookie goaltender. Tie game. Into overtime, which was OV time. Caps beat Bolts 3-2.
The Capitals of the second period… what can we even say? They were lazy and disorganized. They were disinterested– with Alex Semin skating laps around the Tampa net without ever mustering a shot on goal. They were dirty– both Wideman’s and Green’s hits were unacceptable (the latter much worse than the former). That’s not a team I want to write about. That’s not a team I want to be a fan of. (That’s not a preposition I want to end a sentence with.)
The Caps were down and out with twenty minutes left, but the kind of hockey they played in third was the kind that saves seasons and wins cups. This team isn’t quite ready for the Cup yet, but we know we can never count them out.
Still, the standings are sobering. It’ll be an uphill battle.
We’re scared, honestly. It’s a grave time in Caps town. It’ll be hard to cheer us up right —
Oh. Okay. That did it.
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