Monday, January 28, 2013
Oates' first win
All it took for the Caps to prevail for their first win was Alex Ovechkin to end his scoring drought. He would do that in the third period off a one timer on the power play. Ovi’s first goal would end up being the deciding factor against the Sabres making the final score 3-2. Ovechkin played his best game yet logging five shots, three hits, and his first goal.
The other Washington goals were scored by Joel Ward and John Erskine. Joel Ward scored his third goal of the season to tie up the game early 1-1. The forward line of Ward, Ribeiro, and Chimera were all +2 with two points each. They seem to complement each other well with Ribeiro’s skill, Joel Ward’s fore-checking, and Jason Chimera’s speed. I like the look of them as a second line and I hope that Oates will keep them together.
The Ovechkin, Beagle, and Crabb line if you ask me is a lost cause. I understand for one game to reward Beagle and Crabb of their skating. Now even after the win against the Sabres Oates is saying that he will keep that line together. I don’t understand that after Brouwer and Backstrom accompanied Ovi for a successful forward line for half the game yesterday. The defense look improved but John Carlson was once again at the fault of a fast break goal which opened up the scoring by Tyler Ennis. Mike Green picked up his second assist on the Ovechkin game winner and also led all players in time on the ice again.
Michal Neuvirth had another great game saving 22 of 24 shots. He held the Caps’ lead well, making some big saves late in the third period. The Caps only took two penalties throughout the game and killed both of them. This was the first game of the season where they didn’t allow a PP goal. The Capitals however went 1 for 3 on the PP. Mike Ribeiro had one of the assists on Ovechkin’s power play goal. He had two assists in the game and now has six points on the season, making him the leader of the Capitals.
The Caps seem to be finally learning their system and I hope it continues on Tuesday against the Ottawa Senators. Michal Neuvirth has already been named starter for the game. It seems we will see the Ovechkin, Crabb, and Beagle line which I willing to bet will not stand for the entire game. This Washington team has the talent and once the system is learned we will see the Caps of old winning many games consecutively. Keep the faith Caps fans!
Player of the Game: Joel Ward (1 goal, 1 assist)
Stat of the Game: Alex Ovechkin’s first goal!!!!
Unsung Hero: Mike Green