Now that's a game and a half!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

I had a feeling that this game had the potential to be a high scoring one. We all know what the Caps can do and we know too that the Habs have been on a scoring high as of late. And with one team not really having a very good goaltender and the other team relying on their backup (I'll just pretend that we all know that the latter is Halak) it was definitely looking like a high scoring game.

The final score was 5-4 for the Habs. Both teams had 35 shots on goal and almost had the exact same number of shots per period. The only difference is, while the Caps evened out their scoring over the entire game, the Habs exploded in the third period and got four of their five goals in it.

Semin got the first goal of the night. I believe it was Mike Green who took a shot from the point and it somehow deflected off of Semin. So Green does al the work and the Alex gets the goal. Eh. The Caps victory celebration lasted all of a minute and twenty-seconds as the Caps didn't stay on top of Komisarek and Kostopoulos trying to clear the puck and the next thing you know guess who has the puck on a breakaway and puts it past Johnson? Pleky! I was just reading a thing about how the poor guy has had serious bad luck this year. He works so hard out there but has very little to show for it. Well, guess he saw the article and decided to finally get a goal. If I remember correctly, Plekanec's last goal was short handed too...Kind of cool if I've remembered right! Anyway, that was all for the first period. Habs had one chance at the powerplay which was blown completely and the Caps had two chances which failed miserably. During the first period I thought both goalies looked good - well save for both Johnson and Halak doing a little Toskala imitation at one point which could have allowed both teams to get goals on empty nets but they didnt thanks to good defense and good luck Hmm...

Second period was interesting. Caps took five penalties while the Habbies took two. No one scored on the powerplay and I was wondering if it was time to despair again. Maybe the Caps have a good penalty kill but I mean... for a while the Habs just looked awful on the PP. but the awfulness of the powerplay was NOTHING compared to what was too happen at 13:04. Someone has to tell Gainey or Carbo or anyone that it's time for Brisebois to go. He couldn't clear the puck and actually loses complete control of it right in front of Halak with Semin standing right there. Semin takes the puck, Halak moves down, Semin pops the puck over Halak. And it's 2-1 for the Caps. Oh and Semin tried to hug the glass behind the net after the goal - you know, where the guy flies face first into the glass. I've seen Ovechkin do that too. It really looks stupid. Anyway, it was a lovely goal for Semin but a real mess for Brisebois. Time to call it quits me thinks. That was it for the scoring although the Habs did have 13 shots on goal in that period which was the most in the game and was one more than the Caps had in that period.

Now. The third period was where things got interesting. There was a lot of talk after the Habs/Leafs game that the rivalry was in effect dead. One of the high points of the rivalry a long time ago was apparently both teams' desire - and ability! - to win the game. Whatever the cost. Judging by the way the Leafs' have been in the last... forty years... it's clear that at least until Brian Burke gets around to making some changes, the Leafs still have the inability to compete with the Habs when the Habs feel like competing. I missed out entirely on the Habs/Leafs rivalry (wasn't born *g*) but I think tonight's game showed a little bit of what things were like between the two teams.

The Habs entered the third period with a powerplay courtesy of the baby-faced Backstrom. The Habbies weren't looking too hot on the powerplay but Sloan decided to give them a nice gift in the form of a hooking penalty before Backstrom's had expired. So the Habs had a 5 on 3 advantage and within twenty odd seconds who gets the goal? Lang! I have to stop disliking the guy for no reason at all. That goal was nice - even if it apparently hit the guy's arm on the way into the net *coughs*. I thought he was just going to stand there and play hot potato with the puck for the rest of the powerplay but nooooo! He moves up towards Johnson and puts the puck around him. Look at the replay. It's hard to explain. But it was nice. Because Backstrom's penalty wasn't over it was still powerplay time for the Habbies. And they didn't entirely disappoint either. The one issue that seems to creep up with the Kostitsyn brother playing on the same line is that they had a tendency to pass only to each other. This a pain because there are other guys out there on the ice. But anyway, Sergei made an attempt on Johnson's left. On his way back to try to cover the crease, Johnson gets tripped up by his own player which leaves the net open which leaves Andrei to put Sergei's rebound in, which makes it 3-2. Nice!

Fleischmann made life not so nice when he put one past Halak who looked rather unprepared for that one. Well what can you do? Even the best goalies let in flukey goals *COUGHS* But this was really a bad time for that one. Order was momentarily restored about 15 seconds later however when Pleky struck again and scored after taking a pass from Pacioretty (and getting a mini breakaway). Johnson looked just like Halak did 15 seconds previously. Hehe. Well, Nylander almost dashed my hopes of winning this game in regulation time at 12:21 when Ovechkin's shot deflected off several people like a pinball machine and past Halak. At first glance it looks like a stupid easy goal that Halak should have got, but he really wasn't expecting that deflection. Stupid Nylander. I almost feel bad that Ovechkin didn't get the goal. Almost.

Anyway, with the seconds dying and it looking more and more like I would have to suffer through OT and maybe even shootouts, the defensemen get tangled up just inside their own zone with Sergei Kostitsyn who goes to the net, gets further tangled up with the defensemen and pulls an Ovechkin type of move and gets a fairly decent if not slightly weak shot on Johnson... And Johnson..... stares blankly as the puck slides past him. By this point Sergei's been tripped and he's celebrating the goal by lying on the ice. 5-4 Habbies. I should mention that the Habs did get an icing call against them with 12 seconds left to go and Ovechkin did hammer a shot at the net which went just wide... if that had gone in.... well, never mind that.... Can we say "Oh my god, I can't believe that Sergei's goal went in and we actually beat the Caps?" Good.


The gooood
  1. WIN. Especially a hard fought win like this one. It's good for the Habs.
  2. I still think that the powerplay was good....I mean... considering that it worked at all is still amazing....
  3. Plekanec scoring TWICE! Now why can't he do that more often?
  4. No odd man rushes...
  5. I think Halak had to come up with better saves than Johnson did... and he looked pretty good out there again minus a couple of shaky moments but c'mon, he's not freaking superman here...
  6. 59 minutes and 39 seconds of playing time gets you a win
  7. No fights with Semin!
  8. Actually.... no fights at all!
  1. BRISEBOIS. I'm sorry, but that total give away to Semin was just plain awful. It's going to take a lot of work to erase that mess out of my mind. Can't we please find a better guy to play on defense? Make Weber learn how to play defense better so we can get him instead of Brisebois. I can't stand too many more of these horrendous displays of hockey...
  2. everyone is still ruining Ovechkin's name... *sighs*
Question of the hour
  1. How will the Habs do against the Bruins now? Surely we wont' lose 6-1 on Tuesday.......?
Question for the next hour
  1. So much for vacation. Carbo was going to go to Florida for a mini break during the All Star thingy but since the Habbies beat the Caps in regulation time, the Habbies apparently have a better winning percentage which means Carbo's going to the All Star Game as assistant coach to... Erm.. Claude Julien. Do you think Carbo and Julien will get into a shouting match this time around? I'm guessing what happens on Tuesday may have some affect on that outcome....
Around the league in two minutes
  • FILATOV GOT A HAT TRICK. A HAT TRICK! In his sixth NHL game. Mason was in nets again to help squash the Wild 4-2. Can you imagine where this team could be in a couple of years with Mason and Filatov on the team? Scary....Did I ever mention that I love watching Filatov play? *g*
  • Leafs lose. Again. Surprised yet? Me neither. Flyers beat them this time. And people wonder how the Flyers got all their points... Why they beat teams like Atlanta and the Leafs on a regular basis that's how! Ooo! Yeah, it's sarcasm hour again.
  • Sens get blanked. At home. To the Rangers. Surprise of the game? They called up a newbie to be the goalie. No it wasn' Schenn. Poor newbie did the best he could but the Rangers still beat them. Not the newbie's fault that his team got blanked.
  • Florida won 8-4 against the Thrashers with a five goal scoring palooza in the third period.
  • Nashville beat the Blackhawks 4-1. I guess the Blackhawks didnt really show up to the game...


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