Saturday, December 05, 2009

Caps @ Flyers 12-5-2009 Post-Mortem

We told you it wouldn't be close...  Blood everywhere...  Onto the Battle Damage Assessment...

THE GOOD:
  • Nicklas Backstrom with five points tonight; one goal and four assists.  He's really starting to show that he doesn't need A.O. to generate the points.
  • Mike "BEAM ME UP" Green with the Chuck Woolery (that's 2 and 2 in case you've forgotten already) tonight; the first goal being the game winning goal too.
  • The Power Play with another stellar performance, officially 4 for 6.  And in case you were wondering, the major penalty time runs off first and officially the Caps were recorded as 2 for 3 on that Power Play.
  • Jose "Alvin, Simon," Theodore wasn't a slouch in goal either.  He faced 36 shots on goal and only allowed two past him that he didn't have much of a chance on.  But more importantly, with the game tied at 1 and the Caps starting a 9 minute Power Play, he made a couple of saves that allowed the Caps to get the Power Play rolling to put the game away.
  • Tomas Fleischmann scored a pair of goals tonight to get things started less than minute in.  He looks to be heating back up which could make this Caps team downright scary during the grind portion of the schedule.
  • The Penalty Killing on the road has left a lot to be desired but against the fourth best Power Play in the league, the Caps went 2 for 2 in Penalty Kills.  And they were big kills too as the Caps had opened up a 4-1 lead when the Caps took the penalties and if the Flyers had scored on their Power Plays, they would have gotten right back into the game.
  • Of course it also helped greatly that the Caps took only two penalties tonight.  Great discipline against a Flyers team that can easily draw penalties from their opponents.
THE BAD:
  • To give you an idea of how tricky the Plus/Minus stat can be, Tom Poti ends up even tonight despite being on the ice for both Flyers goals and looking lost on both of them.  Yet his partner Milan Jurcina gets a -1 on the night because he wasn't on the ice when Captain Chris Clark scored after Karl "Malden" Alzner came out of the Penalty Box.  We are not too happy with Poti's play tonight.
THE UGLY:
  • We weren't being snarky when we pointed out the other night that Mike Duco was in line for a 10 game suspension for his jumping of Alexandre Giroux though there was a reason why we called it the NHL Suggestion Book because Duco did not receive the suspension called for under Suggestion 70.10.  Well know the NHL Wheel of Justice will be spun for Dan Carcillo who dropped Matt "Omar" Bradley in the first period to earn 29 minutes in penalties in just one play.  Carcillo is a known thug and so maybe the NHL will think about probably suspending him.  But what will be more interesting to watch is how this plays out within the team considering Peter Laviolette's disdain for the Ultimate Fighting on Ice style of play the Flyers love, things are off to a very rocky start in Philadelphia.
  • Ryan Parent:
    Photo from Flyers.com


Back over the summer, part of the justification that General Manager George McPhee offered for not retaining Donald Brashear was that in the few games where the Caps would need an enforcer, they would end up with Power Plays that would allow them to bury teams that decide to take things too far against the Caps.  Well, two games in a row now the Caps have been awarded a 5 minute plus Power Play and have scored more than one goal on both which is exactly what you need to do when you get those chances.  And not sound repetitive, what makes things even better is that they've done this without the services of A.O.  We can't tell you how glad we are to see a performance like this as well.  We hold no illusions that the Flyers are this bad of a hockey team but they were mentally fragile.  The Caps did what they had to do to get the snowball rolling on Philadelphia and come away with an easy win.  It will be interesting to see where the Flyers are on January 17th when they come back to the Phone Booth.

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

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