Monday, September 29, 2008

Caps Keep Rolling; Kozlov Hurt

Capitals 3, Devils 2
Preseason - Scoresheet

There has been a lot of talk of the Capitals picking up where they left off. Since it's still the preseason, I don't put a lot into that statement. But, I guess something should be said for the fact that the Capitals are a perfect 4 and 0 on the preseason. Apparently Corey Masisak's 90-0 season dream is still intact.

Alex Ovechkin has yet to score 5 on 5 in the preseason. He netted a goal on the penalty kill which eventually turned out to be the game winner against the Devils. His previous goals this preseason were on a penalty shot and on the power play. He must be hitting for the preseason cycle. Add goals by Mike Green and Boyd Gordon and two assists from Micheal Nylander (who also got the game's first star) and the Caps come away with a 3 to 2 victory up in New Jersey.

The Caps did have a 3 - 0 lead at the start of the third period. Brent Johnson played the first two periods and played very solid. He really is looking like he wants that starting position. Jose Theodore couldn't keep the shut out going, but the Devils did push up the intensity in the third. During the Devils' late rally, they were trying to get goaltender Kevin Weekes off the ice for an extra attacker with a minute left in the third. The Caps did a good job of forechecking keeping Weekes from getting to the bench. When the Devils finally did get an extra man on the ice, it was far too late for it to be effective.

Interesting to note that Bruce Boudreau has been really experimenting with his line combos, especially on the special teams. He put Chris Bourque, Green and Ovi on the PK a couple of times which eventually lead to the game winning goal on shorty by Ovechkin. The Caps were able to kill off all of their penalties for a second straight game (including a long 5 on 3 in the first period). The power play was sufficient as the Caps were 1 of 6.

Viktor Kozlov suffered a "groin strain" and was taken out of the game as a precautionary measure. It's not believed to be serious. Gordon stepped up on to Kozlov's line and rewarded the decision with a goal off of a nifty Nylander pass. With Chris Clark out of the lineup Ovi wore the captain's C, John Erskine was the only player on either team with a -2 rating. The Devils had less veterans than the Caps in this game.

Donald Brashear got some work in. Getting into the game's only scrap, he took on Pierre-Luc Latourneau-Leblond (pick a name, geez). Not sure why an AHLer would want to take on Brash, but hey, maybe just to get on the scoresheet.

The Caps improve to 4 and 0. I want the preseason to end, but it's not going to. Next up is a date with the Flyers on Wednesday night. Caps will most likely get some practice in and maybe a few more cuts here and there.

On a side note, what are the boys up in Toronto smoking?:

Uh, no they are actually undefeated, and they have only played 4 preseason games. Stellar reporting.

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