Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Game 7 Caps vs. Penguin Scum 5-13-2009 Preview

Series J: Washington Capitals (56-38; 108 points; 1st Southeast Division, 2nd Eastern Conference, 4th Overall) vs. Pittsburgh Penguin Scum (52-41; 99 points; 2nd Atlantic Division, 4th Eastern Conference, 8th Overall):
Eastern Conference Semifinals Game #7, Caps Game #14, Home Game #8, NHL Game #227

Verizon Center, Washington, DC. 7:08 pm. Washington TV: Comcast Sportsnet Mid-Atlantic. Radio: WJFK 106.7-FM. Pittsburgh TV: Fox SportsNet Pittsburgh. Radio: WXDX 105.9-FM. U.S. National TV: Versus. Canadian National TV: CBC, RDS (French).

Tonight, the greatest second round series in the history of the world finally comes to an end. The Caps are looking to improve upon their 2-5 record in Game 7 and are 0-2 against the Penguin Scum in Game 7, meeting them in a Game 7 for the first time since 1995. The Penguin Scum are 5-4 All-Time in Game 7, including a 3-0 mark on the road.

What The Natives Are Saying:

(Com)Post: doing it again, stepping up, keep it clean. Times: ghostbusting, other contributions, another big night, preview.

Neutral Views: preview, memory wipe, mood swings, drama king, Game 7 stats, no changes, trying to play, good line, epic in the making, pain killers, improvement needed.

Open Source Intelligence:

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: variable answers, overexposed, been there, jawing ahead, standing by his man, attention hog. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: gaining experience, could return, his turn, historical advantage, predictable debate, higher ratings, using the whip.

What Do We Expect Tonight?:

Well folks, the NHL hype machine got what it wanted, a Game 7 in this series that is already being branded as "epic" and "an instant classic" before the puck even drops. Taking a narrow view of Game 7, the current crop of Caps clearly have more experience and history on their side simply because the main players for the Caps have played in and won a Game 7, something the main players for the Penguin Scum have never done. However, two weeks ago when the Caps played the Rangers in Game 7, they came out very flat and very tentative despite playing in front of a raucous home crowd. For almost two periods that night the Caps did not show up and play with any purpose. If the Caps do that again tonight, it will be a quick evening as the Penguin Scum are much more dangerous than the Rangers. As for the Penguin Scum, an honest observer has to say that they have no idea how this team will respond to playing in a Game 7. You certainly can get some clues but nothing compares to playing in an NHL Game 7 where both teams are facing a do or die situation. The big key for the Penguin Scum is the play of both Evgeni Malkin-Lindros, who is the true leader of the Penguin Scum, and Marc Andre-Fleury. We have no idea how Malkin-Lindros is going to play but do know that if he has one of his better games, the Penguin Scum will be very tough to beat because the Penguin Scum feed off of his play more than Canadian Diving Team Captain, Lowblow Secondary Assist Cindy Crosby. Marc Andre-Fleury has been a non-factor this series and is about due for an exceptional game. If Fleury has it tonight, then the Caps could very well be sunk. However, Fleury has a troubling history of coming up amazingly short in large situations. A win tonight can help put that to rest. Finally, there is the x-factor for tonight that has been an underlying storyline throughout this series and that is the officiating. First of all, who will get this marquee assignment and how will they call the game? CW says that tonight will be one of the old fashioned "let 'em play" games which means that Power Plays will come at premium tonight. But as we've here in DC have seen, that often gets thrown out the window at the most inopportune times. Especially when it comes to advancing the agenda of the NHL Hype Machine.

Caps Nut Official Prediction:

Caps 2
Penguin Scum 3
Winner by Scuderi

(5-8 in the playoffs)

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