Post-Game Thoughts

Caps won in overtime against the Thrashers 4-3 where Tomas Fleischmann knocked in the game winning goal off a Chris Mason rebound. Washington kind of escaped with this one but I will gladly take the win. Here’s a few thoughts/observations.

– The Caps really need to break the habit of getting off to slow starts. Atlanta controlled the pace of the game for the entire first period and netted a powerplay goal towards the end. We were outshot 13-4 during then. The rest of the game, we outshot Atlanta 40-19.

– Atlanta had the same strategy as they did in the first game; block shots and prevent the Caps from getting any momentum in the offensive zone. They blocked 27 shots all game and were most effective in the first period. The Caps had some trouble generating plays in the offensive zone all game and their first three goals were due to horrible turnovers on the Thrashers’ part. Good on Washington to take advantage of them, though.

– I understand why we were using Mike Green in a limited role but to ONLY use him on the powerplay seemed kind of silly, especially since he didn’t look 100% there at all. He couldn’t get his shoulder high enough to make slapshots and looked kind of off. The injury to Tom Poti may have forced him into the lineup. Another reason why I thought we should have picked up a depth defenseman so that Tyler Sloan and John Erskine wouldn’t have to play key minutes like they did tonight.

– Speaking of Erskine, I usually hate him but he played well and played about 26 minutes. I loved what he did by sticking up for Neuvirth after Dustin Byfuglien runned him. It also helps that I hate Byfuglien and seeing Erskine go crazy on him made me happy.

– 2nd line was on fire, most notably Alex Semin who got his 4th career hat trick tonight. Granted, they were helped by some bad turnovers by Atlanta, they were still playing at their best tonight. Perrault had two beautiful set-ups on Semin’s 2nd and 3rd goal and it’s the reason why I wanted him to be on the roster full-time. He always makes the most of his time in the NHL and I’m hoping he’s here to stay. We’re going to have quite a logjam at center though. Maybe we can move Fleischmann to the wing and scratch Gordon and Steckel on certain nights. That will depend on how Marcus Johansson plays, though.

– Hard to really blame anyone for the Thrashers tying goal other than saying it was a great play by Evander Kane to knock the puck in out of mid-air. I’ve been a fan of him for awhile and it’s looking like he’s going to have a hell of a sophomore season.

– 64% on face-offs tonight. Not bad. Fleischmann, however, was 2/8. At least he scored the game winner.

In the end, I’m glad we got the win despite having some struggles that have been plaguing us all year.

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