Monday, January 21, 2008

Caps @ Penguin Scum 1-21-2008 Preview

Washington Capitals (21-26; 47 points; 3rd Southeast Division, 11th Eastern Conference, 25th Overall) @ Pittsburgh Penguin Scum (27-20; 57 points; 2nd Atlantic Division, 4th Eastern Conference, 6th Overall):
Caps Game #48, Road Game #24, NHL Game #725

Mellon Arena, Pittsburgh, PA. 7:38 pm. Washington TV: None. Radio: WWWT 1500-AM, 107.7-FM. Pittsburgh TV: None. Radio: WXDX 105.9-FM. U.S. National TV: Versus. Canadian National TV: TSN, RIS (French). NHL Center Ice: N/A.

Tonight the Caps head out to pay their last visit this season to that dump in Pittsburgh and face the Canadian Diving Team Captain, Secondary Assist Cindy Crosbyless Penguin Scum. The Penguin Scum have won both meetings so far this season in a pair of one goal games. You might have heard recently about Cindy's injury, she has a high ankle sprain after crashing into the boards at Mellon Arena during Friday night's 3-0 loss to the Ning and is out indefinitely. However, the Penguin Scum didn't miss her on Saturday as they won in Montreal 2-0. Since a gimmick loss to the Thrashers ended an eight game winning streak four games ago, the Penguin Scum have been alternating wins and losses.

What The Natives Are Saying:

(Com)Post. Times. Caps.com.

Neutral Views:

NHL.com AP Wire. TSN.ca.

Open Source Intelligence:

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Center of attention, triple promotion. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: prognosis today, injuries mounting, Q&A, adding three, scouting the Caps.

What Do I Expect Tonight?:

Patrick Lalime, Johan Hedberg, and now Ty Conklin. In recent years the Penguin Scum have had a knack for taking goaltenders from literally out of nowhere and turning them into world beaters for a little over half a season. Some might want to add Ron Tugnutt and Ken Wregget to that list but Conklin who was a career backup/minor leaguer before being called up to the Penguin Scum in December has posted a 10-2 record with 2 shutouts a 1.83 goals against average and a .946 save percentage. These are his best numbers since a 4 game stint with the Edmonton Oilers in the 2001-2002 season (2-0, 1.63 GAA, and .939 save %), which was his first in the NHL. What makes this all the more impressive is that he is doing this with Sergei Gonchar playing in front of him. As for the rest of the Penguin Scum, a boost in play is often to be expected when the star player goes down. Everybody is trying to pick up the slack now that the Canadian Diving Team Captain, Secondary Assist Cindy Crosby is out for the foreseeable future. That boost will last for about a week and half to two weeks before the star player's presence is really missed and the slide begins. The Caps haven't won in Pittsburgh in over 5 years, the Penguin Scum have won the last six games between the two teams, and we always have something fluky happen to us against these guys. And should the Caps pull off the win tonight, expect the "you only beat us because Cindy is hurt" card to be pulled as the excuse.

Caps Nut Official Prediction:

Caps 3
Penguin Scum 4
Winner by Scuderi

(28-19 on the season)

Editorial Note For the Dozens of Readers of This Blog:

Tomorrow is the March for Life and every year my Catholic Parish hosts college students and clergy from around the country who will be attending the March. Tonight we'll be feeding them and every year I volunteer my services to help feed these fine folks who are seeking to correct the biggest social injustice currently in the United States. Therefore I will not be watching most of the game which means there will be no Post-Mortem later tonight.

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