Saturday, February 28, 2009

Caps @ Bruins 2-28-2009 Post-Mortem

And yet so unsatisfying... Onto the Battle Damage Assessment...

THE GOOD:
  • If the Caps were looking to put doubt into the minds of the Bruins; they had to have done it with this win on the road in overtime. Twice this season, Alexander "Slappy" Semin has come up with a game winning goal that has Tim Thomas shaking his head. And oh by the way, the Caps never trailed in this game today.
  • The Power Play continues to impress, at least in the first period. Another first period Power Play goal staked the Caps to an early 1-0 lead. The unit finished 2 for 5 but Tomas Fleischmann's third period PPG was a pure stroke of luck as the unit fell apart after the first period and did not generate very much.
  • Mike "BEAM ME UP" Green may not be scoring as many goals as he was a couple of weeks ago, but he posted another two assists today and continues to be an offensive threat.
  • Boston Head Coach Claude Julien was crowing about keeping A.O. under wraps so far this season, but score one for Bruce Boudreau who used the short offensive line change in the second period to sneak A.O. out for his 45th goal of the season. A.O. got another 4 shots on goal today in addition to the goal he scored. He now has 208 goal in his career which puts him 10 goals behind Mike Ridley for third on the Caps All Time Goal Scoring list. His 391 career points is 4 behind Bobby Carpenter for 14th on the Caps All Time Scoring list.
  • Pending the outcome of tonight's Carolina @ Atlanta and Colorado @ the New York Rangers games, the magic number for a playoff spot is down to at least 22 points and could go as low as 20 if Carolina falls in regulation tonight. A division title is wrapped up in 25 points with Florida getting blown out on the road again, this time in New Jersey, 7-2. Finally, the New York Islanders can no longer catch the Caps in the overall standings this season.

THE BAD:

  • The Caps and Bruins both came out with guns blazing in the first half of the first period, but when both teams settled down, the Caps seemed to be on their heels for a majority of the game.
  • We have to admit, we feel that Jose "Alvin, Simon," Theodore played a Hades of a game today with 34 saves, but didn't like the Power Play goal he gave up to Zdeno Chara that tied up the game late in the third period. That alone is why Boston was able to get away with the Bettman Point today and the Caps were only able to shave off a single point of Boston's lead.
  • And if it wasn't for Theodore's stellar play, the Caps wouldn't have been in this game as kinda mentioned above, Boston had 37 shots on goal.

THE UGLY:

  • After two periods of tough, smart, and disciplined hockey, the Caps let it all get away in the third period. The Caps allowed 15 shots on goal in the third period alone after allowing 22 through the first two and took 3 minor penalties in the third period after taking just one in the first two.
  • Though in the first two periods, the Caps held the lead for a total of 1:45. We allowed tying goals 1:27 and then just 18 seconds after taking the lead. The Caps need to play with the lead much better than that. While they held onto their third period lead for 13:03, Boston was clearly the team on the attack for the majority of that time.

Did we see what we wanted to see out of today's dress rehearsal? Kind of. While the Caps pulled out the win, we're still troubled by how loose we play in our defensive zone. Maybe the Caps will get Chris Pronger before the deadline or maybe they won't but as currently constructed, we don't think the Caps have what it takes to get very deep into the playoffs. Nobody really knows what General Manager George McPhee is thinking so we could be in the hunt for another goal scoring center or goaltender. Come playoff time, teams that give up goals from 80 feet out aren't going to go very far and we can't count on playing many teams like that. However, if you're Boston, you know at least the Caps think they can beat you no matter what and that has to be of some concern.

It has been... A TWO POINT DAY!!!

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