Photo credit: Bill Smith
This is it. We’ve had a big red circle around this week since the schedule was announced. Washington Capitals @ Chicago Blackhawks kicks off three very tough road games (Detroit and Philly are the other two). With the Eastern Conference standings as dense as they are, this game means a lot.
Duncan Keith caught a lucky rebound up the middle that Andrew Shaw tipped in, then Viktor Stalberg smoked Dmitry Orlov for a big breakaway goal. Mike Knuble scored a long-distance goal (okay, it was just 32 feet) early in the second. Patrick Kane restored the two-goal lead with an easy wrister after a series of defensive goofs. Wideman and Schultz let Shaw skate away with the puck, and his wraparound become the Hawks’ fourth goal. Alex Ovechkin got some open ice and roofed it. Chicago got the empty netter as soon as Neuvy cleared out. Hawks beat Caps 5-2.
The Capitals just looked awful for long stretches. Without a sturdy offense, they spent most of the game in their own zone, where they were overwhelmed. They failed to challenge Chicago’s forwards on attack, or they lost many of the battles they did choose. The cracks in Washington’s defense looked more like vast fissures. Jim Johnson needs to take these kids back to school.
No time to linger on this one. Puck drop for Caps at Red Wings is in like 25 minutes. Last time we played them, well, it was awesome. The Caps have changed so much since game 7, and this one is going to be very very important.
Heck, they’re all gonna be very important. Judgment Day on April 7 at Front Page just got a whole lot more judgementaler.
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
All original content on russianmachineneverbreaks.com is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)– unless otherwise stated or superseded by another license. You are free to share, copy, and remix this content so long as it is attributed, done for noncommercial purposes, and done so under a license similar to this one.