Friday, January 4, 2008

Bruins/Capitals Recap

Capitals 0, Bruins 2

In what comes as a shock to almost no one, the Capitals, missing Alexander Semin, Chris Clark and Tom Poti, playing one of the league's better defensive teams and Donald Brashear on the second line, struggled to put the puck in the net. In a surprise to anyone who's ever watched a hockey game, it is no longer an interference penalty to push a player without the puck into his own goaltender, causing the goaltender to be knocked onto the ice out of position.

I have two theories as to why Chuck Kobasew wasn't called for interference for knocking Jeff Schultz into Olaf Kolzig and knocking Kolzig over in the process. One is that the referees were so overwhelmed by the two penalties committed by Kobasew on the play (and the borderline "player-in-the-crease" call) that they stood shell-shocked, unable to raise their arms. The other is that this is now a legal play, another hare-brained attempt by Gary Bettman to raise scoring in the league by letting players shoot at an open net, an idea only slightly worse than the trapezoid and the delay of game call for shooting the puck over the glass in the defensive zone.

As a preemptive measure to criticism I'm sure is to come I'd like to point out that the Capitals did not have a terrible night offensively. They had 31 shots, a number of good chances and moved the puck well. They hit the post at least three times, meaning they were less than six collective inches from winning the game. That said, they still should have done a better job of finishing and not let themselves get shutout by Tim Thomas who, to his credit, did have a very good game in net for the Bruins.

It's hard to remember sometimes under Boudreau, but even the best teams lose games.

Quick Hits

  • I don't think there's any way to make it through this without mentioning Joe Beninati's bright blue suit and tie combination. Been taking style advice from Bruce Boudreau and Don Cherry have we, Joe?
  • Craig Laughlin - Randy Jones was suspended three games for his hit from behind on Bergeron, he didn't get off scot-free. Research, guys!
  • Comcast Sportnet - who the heck is Mike DiPietro?
  • Kolzig's first period was a good a period as any he's had this year.
  • Not only is Milan Lucic an exciting young prospect, he's also a heck of a nice guy. I mean you have to be pretty generous to let John Erskine use your face as a punching bag, right?
  • Apparently Brian Pothier is hurt again. Eminger? Please?

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