Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Oilers Spoil

Capitals 2, Oilers 5
Scoresheet - Wash Post

Apparently, the Caps may have the Penguins on the brain. Per Tarik on his blog: "Boudreau said he warned his players this morning about looking past the Oilers and ahead to Wednesday's showdown with Pittsburgh. We'll know by about the middle of the second period tonight whether they were listening."

Obviously they weren't.

Tomas Fleischmann scored a highlight reel goal and Mike Green added another power play goal. But both goals weren't enough to beat former 'Cane Eric Cole who pounced on some Caps turnovers and put up the hat trick against the Capitals.

The Capitals outshot, outhit, out-took-away the Oilers. But they also gave up the puck 26 times. Alex Ovechkin finished the game with out a point, 7 shots on goal and four give aways. In the third he was pushed to the second line with Viktor Kozlov and Sergei Fedorov. Or Nick Backstrom and Alex Semin were pushed to the second line with Brooks Laich. Either way, Bruce Boudreau sent the message loud and clear.

Green had a career night of sorts. He scored his ninth power play goal leading all defensemen in the league in power play tallies. He also scored his 100th and 101st points of his NHL career.

Fleischmann had a spectacular goal. His speed caught three Oilers off guard as he broke down the middle into the Oilers' zone. When he crossed the blue line the puck started to ride on it's edge, Flash split the defenders but flipping the puck up over the stick checks and his speed was too much for them to recover. The puck settled back down with Flash through the defense and he beat Dwayne Roloson blocker high.

Jose Theodore played okay, not great, but not his best. Part of the problem was the giveaways and poor defensive coverage after the turnover. It would have to take some pretty outstanding goaltending for him to make those saves, but Theo just wasn't on.

Dwayne Roloson, who some think this was an audition for a possible trade with the Caps, played much better. Controlling his rebounds and gobbling up shots. If he is rumored to be possible trade fodder, he made his case turning away 34 shots, including a barrage of early first period shots.

The Caps drop their second straight at home and lost their third straight which matches two other times they have lost three in a row. I would not want to be on the plane ride to Pittsburgh, as the Caps play their second back to back. The Caps have never won both games of a back to back, why start now.

Photo AP, Lawrence Jackson

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