Canucks-Caps recap

I figured tonight would be a good chance for Washington to pick up an impressive win considering they were facing a Vancouver team who was playing the 2nd night of a back-to-back and had their winning streak snapped yesterday. Well, the Capitals got off to a good start for a change but it ended up being the same old story for this team with another defeat to a better team and Washington still suffering from a struggling offense and a weak powerplay. Vancouver is arguably the best team in the league right now so it’s hard to get too upset over this loss but seeing the same mistakes happening over and over again is getting frustrating. Granted, pretty much every mistake Washington made tonight came in the 2nd period but when you’re a team that’s struggling offensively, falling down 3-1 in the middle of a game, that’s not a good sign. Our next game is against a struggling Ottawa Senators team so hopefully things will go better for us then. Here’s to hoping they can build off the strong third period they had tonight.

– Like I said earlier, Vancouver is probably the best team in the NHL right now and it was good to see Washington hang tough with them for most of the game. Still, making mistakes like turning the puck over against the Sedin line will kill you and that’s what happened to Jason Chimera near the end of the 2nd period. I wouldn’t have been so upset about it at the time if it didn’t come right after one of the few good shifts from Washington in that period. Total momentum killer.

– Guess who was on the ice every time #8 was? Dan Hamhuis and Kevin Bieksa. The former skating 25 minutes and the latter skating roughly 25. Another night, another defensive pairing finds a way to stop our top line. It’s getting kind of redundant with the dry spell that Nicklas Backstrom is going through but these two did a fine job tonight. They did make some mistakes but Roberto Luongo cleaned up all of them. He was sharp tonight aside from letting a Matt Hendricks shot bounce off his glove hand for a goal.

– Eric Fehr collided with David Steckel sometime during the third period and didn’t return to the game. He will be out for at least Sunday’s game. When it rains, it pours. I know that injuries to depth guys usually aren’t crippling but when your top players aren’t scoring, it is.

– Vancouver dominated this game for the most part. I felt like the ice was tipped in their direction for at least 1/4 of the game because everything was in our zone and the Canucks were skating around us the entire time. Big reason why they were able to jump on top 3-1 in the 2nd. It also helps having two guys like Alex Edler and Christian Ehrhoff who have a laser of a shot and are lethal on the powerplay. Washington ended up getting outshot 35-27

– I’m not one to bitch about the other team and the officiating but the Canucks got away with a lot of dirty plays tonight and there were a lot of questionable calls on our end. That said, the Capitals players spent too much time waiting for the officials to make the call rather than continuing play.

– Marcus Johansson needs to keep playing like he has the last few games and less like he has for ….well pretty much the rest of the season. Another goal tonight on an excellent pass from Backstrom. Those two probably wont be playing that much together because they’re both centers but that was nice to see. The 2nd line center position is still up for grabs and Johansson finally looks like he wants it more. We have a logjam in our bottom-6 of “decent-but-not-great” forwards so someone really needs to step up. I’ve accepted that Mathieu Perreault is too enigmatic for it, unfortunately.

– This certainly wasn’t the best night for Mike Green or Jeff Schultz. Maybe putting them back together wasn’t the best idea? Or maybe I should wait a few games before jumping to conclusions? Yeah, the last idea sounds better.

– Tambellini-Kesler-Raymond was a really good line for Vancouver tonight. Thought they had the most chances out of anyone else on their team even if none of them scored. Guess who was matched up with them the most? #55 and #52. HA!

– Varlamov was mostly good tonight and was very sharp at controlling his rebounds so that the Canucks wouldn’t get an extra shot or two. Definitely bailed out our defense on a lot of messes. I thought he should have had the Sedin goal even if it was on a breakaway. Ehrhoff and Edler goals probably could have been stopped too but I’ll have to re-check to see if he was screened or not.

 

Three Stars
1. Daniel Sedin

2. Christian Ehrhoff

3. Marcus Johansson

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One Response to Canucks-Caps recap

  1. Chris Ross says:

    Very good review bud. I thought the Canucks came out really strong against the Caps especially after falling so flat the night before in their 1-0 loss to the Rangers. Right now, with Detroit’s injuries helping out, they are the best team in the NHL. I think the only thing stopping them from making a serious run is Luongo not playing up to standard. He has been good as of late but still he lets in those soft goals too often. Even yesterday that first goal I think probably would have been stopped a couple of seasons ago. Also, you think you could check out my blog cuz I really wanna hear what you have to say. http://chrisross91.wordpress.com/2011/01/14/roberto-luongo-the-ex-factor/

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