Thursday, December 08, 2005

Predators' Power Play Punishes

Capitals 2, Predators 5

The Caps may have been prepared for the 2nd placed team in the Western Conference. They may have been prepared for the likes of Steve Sullivan and Paul Kariya. But the Capitals were not ready for the Predators power play.

3 power play goals lifted the Preds to win number 18 and just one win behind first place Detroit that the Capitals face on Friday. The Capitals didn’t look like the buzzing team that had given the Rangers a beating last Saturday.

With as many times the penalty kill unit has been on the ice for the Caps, you would think that they would have their system down pat. But the Preds caught the Caps standing around, watching the play. They have been a man short 196 times already this season.

Penalties killed the Capitals, and the quick passing of the Predator power play left Olaf Kolzig spinning, and on the first two goals being beaten so badly he didn’t even go down into the butterfly to attempt a save.

Alex Ovechkin had the only power play goal for the Capitals after a pretty pass from Andrew Cassels. Add a Ben Clymer “garbage goal” and the Caps were frustrated all night by the Preds defense and Chris Mason in goal for Thomas Vokoun.

Overall Grade: D

The Caps need to take advantage of opportunities their opponents give them. Unable to score with a two man advantage has plagued the Caps all year. The Caps must stay out of the penalty box against Detroit, or the result will be the same.

Wash Post covers the details as usual. The team is definitely hard on themselves after this game, maybe it will be a wake-up call for them when they face the first place team in the west, the Red Wings.


Anonymous said...

Two overlapping powerplays for three minutes of man advantage, part of which gave them a full minute of five-on-three... and nothing. It seemed to me that the Caps players were simply stunned by the Preds' fast skating and superior passing. Mason was damned good in net... I seriously thought it was Vokoun for the first ten minutes of the game.

Hopefully their special teams (esp. PK unit) will do better against Detroit tomorrow night.

Garrett said...

Chris Mason did a spectacular job, but it was also the Preds defense that help him out in a big way. There were not many rebound chances and if they were it seemed the Preds were to the puck first. I hope the Caps can turn this into a learning experience or else what's the point.