Caps vs. Jets +/- Caps Win, 4-0 by Gustavo Semidey
The Capitals are in Winnipeg to play a back-to-back series against the Jets who currently lead the Caps by 9 points in the SouthEast division standings. With four points on the line the Capitals can greatly close that gap between themselves and the Jets for their playoff lives. “Make or Break” time.
- Mike Green is back in the line up for the Capitals
- Early goal, Troy Brouwer (11) with Brooks Laich getting the primary assist and his first point of the year.
- Puck possession has been the Caps best part of the 1st period (aside from the 2 goals)
- Marcus Johansson socres his 4th goal of the year, Ovechkin with the primary assist.
- Oleksy and Wright drop the gloves and have a gentlemen’s quarrel, which Olesky won by a few punches.
- Ovechkin putting his heart into this game, hitting everything in sight
- Mojo draws a tripping penalty, on Dustin Byfuglien (2 minutes)
- Ovechkin scores his 13th goal of the year on the PP opportunity. Nick Backstrom with the primary assist (22) and John Carlson credited with the secondary assist (9)
- Nick Backstrom scores his 4th goal of the year, Ovechkin with the primary assist (14) and Johansson with the secondary assist (3).
- Branden Holtby with back to back shutouts of the Winnipeg Jets saving 19 of 19 shots (can we play the rest of the year in Winnipeg?)
- Capitals were 1/3 on the PP
- Capitals were 3/3 on PK
- In the second period the Jets had the advantage on the puck possession
- Jack Hillen off to the penalty box for tripping (2 minutes) Hillen has now had a penalty in each game since he came back from IR.
- Steve Oleksy 2 minutes for DOG
- Steve Oleksy 2 minutes for tripping
With the playoff window drawing ever closer to being shut, the Capitals are at the “Make or Break” part of the year, and today they have helped “make” their season. The Capitals have won the 1st of a back-to-back series drawing 2 points closer to the division leading Jets. The division games are going to be the most important games for the remainder of the year . If the Caps play the way they played these last two games between the Penguins and Jets; the Capitals will be on the right track to extending their season. It also helps when your goalie shuts out opponents in their home ice (i.e. the Holtbeast)
The Capitals grounded the Jets from the initial puck drop, winning the puck possession battle pinning the Jets in their D-zone for most of the game. The scoring began early when Troy Brouwer scored his 11th goal of the year on a wrist shot that made it thorugh Brooks Laich’s screen of Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec tallying his first point of the year. The second goal came on Marcus Johansson’s tip in from Alex Ovechkin’s pass to tally up his 4th goal of the year.
In the second period the game became a physical battle, where only seven shots were put on net but bodies were flying. Mainly Alex Ovechkin knocking down two Jet players in one shift, and Steve Oleksy picking up a 5 minute major for fighting James Wright after a big hit behind the boards left Wright looking for revenge on Oleksy, only to taste Olesky’s fist.
In the 3rd period the Capitals finished off the Winnipeg Jets by scoring two more goals. The 3rd goal of the night came when Ovechkin scored from the Ovi spot on the ice during a PP opportunity after Pavelec played the puck outside the trapezoid tallying his 13th goal of the year. The final goal of the night belonged to Nick Backstrom getting his 4th of the year.
The Capitals were the dominant team today on offense and defense; but there was also the goaltending from Holtby, shutting out the Jets for the second game in a row by blocking all 19 shots faced this evening. The Holtbeast was alive tonight; nothing proved that more than the flash of the right leg pad on a break out rush by the Jets. The Capitals will need the Holtbeast to be present for the rest of the season if they expect for their season to continue through the spring. This is “make or break” time and so far the Capitals are making.
Tomorrow is another step towards the final stretch of the season and the Capitals will play this exact same team they just finished shutting out. The Jets will be angry and will give their best effort early on, the Capitals have to withstand the attack and leave Winnipeg with 4 points, the Caps have proved they can beat the Jets and tomorrow they’ll have a chance to do it again. See you tomorrow night
Something to keep an eye on is Jack Hillen and his penalties. Since returning from his IR trip Hillen has played in 3 games and in all 3 he has taken a penalty, and 2 of the 3 penalties coming in the early minutes of the 1st period. Something tells me that Erskine’s sweater will be hanging in Hillen’s locker.
Well so far my NCAA bracket is in the top 95%, which means my bracket is done… Another March goes by and another bracket gets trashed. sighhhhh