Saturday, September 29, 2007

If I hadn't seen it . . .

I wouldn't believe it. Down 5-2 in the 3rd, the Caps came back to beat the Flyers 7-5 on five unanswered third period goals. Now the Caps were down 5-2, but it wasn't really that the team played all that horrible up to that point, they dominated the play 5 on 5, but the Flyers were burying their chances, Poti gave Richards a gift, and Koharski made some interesting calls in the second (such as Chris Clark getting called for holding when he had two hands on the stick). Above all else though, Olie had a rough game. At one point the Flyers had 5 goals on 12 shots. The past two seasons, the Caps have not been in any games unless Olie was in his top form. Olie wasn't in top form last night, and the Caps rallied to bail him out, something unseen around these parts in a while.

The Good:
1. Alexander Ovechkin. In the third period he just woke up and won the game. Something he's always wanted to do in the past, and been capable of doing before (like games against Anaheim in '06 and Atlanta in '07).

2. Brian Pothier. Exactly what we expected when we got him. Now that he's not logging top 2 minutes, he's playing at his level, and shining both in the offensive and defensive zones.

3. Dave Steckel. He's making management's decisions extremely difficult about who we are going to keep along the back 6. His second and third goals of the preseason along with solid defensive play and his amazing face-off abilities are showing he belongs in the NHL with some organization.

The Bad:
1. Mike Green. He kept getting ice time and doing nothing with it. I've never seen a puck bounce over a stick as much as it did over his last night, giving me flashbacks to Sergei Gonchar.
2. Tom Poti. He had a solid game most of the way, but the moment that sticks out is that awful turnover in the first leading to Richards' first goal.
3. Jeff Schultz. He's not playing anything like he did at the beginning of last season. He's going down to Hershey, and they are just going to murder him when he gets there.

The Ugly:
1. Olie Kolzig. I'm sorry, sir, but that was as bad as I've seen you play in a while. Let's get the rest off in the preseason, please.
2. The officiating. I've never seen the player closer to the boards get called for boarding. I've never seen a player with two hands on the stick called for holding, yet both of those happened against the Caps in the second period, leading to a PP goal by the Flyers.
3. The ice. Let's get this fixed guys. I know it's been in the upper 80s and 90s the last few weeks, but this team needs quality ice to move the way it wants to.

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