It’s a potential four-point game as the Caps host the division-leading Pittsburgh Penguins for a Sunday lunchtime brawl. Let’s go.
There’s a scene in the movie That Thing You Do where Tom Hanks is playing a record-label guy, and he’s talking to this scrappy little band who is about to play a big show, and he says, “it’s very important you don’t stink today.”
Don’t know why I thought about that just now.
Anyway, the Caps host the Pens high noon today in DC.
Former Capital Riley Barber was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday completing a childhood dream for the American forward. The Canadiens traded Barber and Phil Varone for Joseph Blandisi and Jake Lucchini.
Barber grew up in Pittsburgh and was a fan of the Penguins as a kid.
The Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-2 on Tuesday. Sidney Crosby had a goal and three assists while new acquisition Jason Zucker scored his third goal in three games since joining the black and yellow. Anthony Angello also added his first NHL goal.
The victory jumped the Penguins into first place into the Metropolitan Division over the Washington Capitals. The Capitals had led the division since October 19 – a span of 122 days.
A decade ago, one of the greatest regular-season games in Washington Capitals history happened at Verizon Center.
After DC was blanketed with over two feet of snow, the Capitals and Penguins renewed their rivalry on Super Bowl Sunday 2010.
Sidney Crosby scored the game’s first two goals to the ire of the Caps fans who successfully made it to the arena. Gross. Alex Ovechkin responded with a lamplighter of his own, but then Jordan Staal found the back of the net twice himself. By the middle of the second period, the Penguins had a commanding 4-1 lead. The game appeared over.
And then the Snovechkin magic happened.
The Washington Capitals dropped their first meeting of the season with the Pittsburgh Penguins by a score of 4-3. The annoying bird team with ugly colors is creeping closer to the Caps division lead.
The Pens out-shot the Caps 33 to 32, but were out-attempted at five-on-five 60 to 26.
At long last, the Washington Capitals met the Pittsburgh Penguins in a real game of hockey. And while the Caps sure had the puck a lot in this one, the Penguins had it more where it mattered.
Lars Eller kicked us off with a wristshot from the slot, but the Penguins came back with a goal off some person named Sam Lafferty, who I don’t know and won’t respond to. Patric Hornqvist got a short-side goal on Samsonov to give Pittsburgh a lead after twenty weird minutes.
That lead grew in the second period with Dominik Simon going five-hole with a backhand shot during a defensive breakdown. Evgeny Kuznetsov narrowed it to a one-goal lead with a filthy backhand in the third period. Brandon Tanev deflected a shot off Orlov to score, but Eller immediately responded by roofing the puck behind Matt Murray. The Caps pressed late but couldn’t tie it.
We’re 53 games into the regular season, and at long last the Washington Capitals will meet the Pittsburgh Penguins. The schedule-makers, in their infinite wisdom, decided to have the two best teams in the division wait until Super Bowl Sunday before they’d play one another.
This game is gonna be good.
12:30 PM. Capital One Arena. National coverage. Let’s do this.
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