Author Topic: CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13  (Read 2409 times)

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Offline Senators2005

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #25: January 12, 2007, 01:52:29 AM »
Final at St. Pete Times Forum

Washington 4
Tampa Bay 5

Lecavalier, St. Louis lift streaking Lightning past Caps

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Vincent Lecavalier scored two goals against Olaf Kolzig in Tampa Bay's 5-4 win over Washington. Lecavalier has 12 goals in 29 games against Kolzig, the most that he has scored against any goaltender in his NHL career. Lecavalier's next favorite victims are Roberto Luongo (10 goals) and Martin Brodeur (nine). Story  

The Tampa Bay Lightning climbed above .500 for the first time in more than a month and nudged ahead of Washington into eighth place in the Eastern Conference standings by beating the Capitals 5-4 on Thursday night.

Considering there's still three months left in the season, Tortorella responded with a resounding so what.

"There is so much hockey to play," Tortorella said. "Things change so quickly the way the standings are this year. I don't think you can get too down if you're in 12th or 13th place. I don' think you can get too high if you're in the eighth, seventh or sixth spot."

Vincent Lecavalier had two goals and an assist and Martin St. Louis snapped a third-period tie with his 28th goal of the season.

Vaclav Prospal had a goal and two assists and Ryan Craig also scored for the Lightning, who got 18 saves from goaltender Johan Holmqvist to match a season high with their third straight win.

The Lightning have a winning record for the first time since they beat Atlanta 8-0 to improve to 14-13-2.

"It's just nice to be above water. ... It's a good feeling. We've been on the other side for a while," St. Louis said. "Hopefully we just keep playing well and stay on that side for a while."

Alexander Semin scored two goals and Alexander Ovechkin had two assists for Washington, which had won three in a row following a tough stretch in which the Capitals lost seven of eight games.

Lecavalier scored his 25th goal for a 2-1 lead in the first period and then added his 26th after making a nifty move to get the puck around Washington goalie Olaf Kolzig for a 4-3 advantage with 7:36 remaining in the second.

Lecavalier narrowly missed getting a third goal, misfiring at an empty net from the blue line with about 30 seconds to go.

The Lightning scored twice in the first nine minutes, sandwiching goals by Lecavalier and Craig around Semin's 23rd of the season on a Washington power-play. Semin added his 24th on a wrist shot from the slot less than six minutes into the second period, giving him seven goals in his last four games.

Ben Clymer took a pass from Donald Brashear between two defenders at the blue line and scored on a breakaway to put the Capitals ahead 3-2. Tampa Bay answered with goals by Prospal and Lecavalier in a 69-second span to regain the lead 4-3, but the Lightning couldn't sustain the momentum.

Ovechkin, who has three goals and eight assists during a five-game point streak, flicked a perfect pass across the ice from the left wing to set up Chris Clark's goal that made it 4-4 with 9.4 seconds remaining in the second period.

St. Louis took a backhand pass from Proposal, who was behind the net, and delivered his game-winner less than four minutes into the final period.

"The fans want to see scoring. You had a lot of skill out there," Washington coach Glen Hanlon said. "Every time there was a mistake or an opportunity, it was in the right people's hands. There were some real nice goals out there."

Meanwhile, Kolzig blamed the loss on his performance.

"The team played terrific. The goalie let them down," Kolzig said. "I just didn't make the saves I needed to make, and that basically was the difference."

Offline Senators2005

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #26: January 13, 2007, 05:50:52 PM »
Caps Visit Cats for Saturday Southeast Skirmish
Jan. 13 vs. Florida Panthers at BankAtlantic Center
Time: 7:30 pm
TV: CW (WDCW 50)
Radio:  WTNT 570 AM

Washington Capitals (19-18-7)
Florida Panthers (16-21-9)

Two months to the day after their last visit to South Florida, the Washington Capitals return to BankAtlantic Center for the second of their four road games against the Florida Panthers this season. The Caps came away with a 4-1 win over the Cats in that Nov. 13 contest, and they also took a 5-2 decision from the Panthers in an Oct. 18 game at Verizon Center.

Saturday?s game in Sunrise is the second of a four-game road trip. The Caps will be looking to snap a four-game road losing streak and lift their road record above .500 once again; it is currently at 8-8-4. The Capitals opened the trip with a 5-4 loss to the Lightning in Tampa Bay on Thursday. Washington briefly held a lead midway through that contest but was not able to hold on.

Alexander Semin led Washington?s attack against the Bolts, scoring twice to lift his season total to 24. He cracked the league?s top 10 with those goals and is now tied for seventh in the NHL with the Rangers? Brendan Shanahan. Semin has tallied a dozen power play goals, tied for fourth in the league in that department.

Caps coach Glen Hanlon credits the overall improvement in Semin?s game for enabling him to play key minutes and a high number of minutes. The increased ice time is a factor in Semin?s sophomore success.

?You can?t score that many goals without playing 17 to 18 minutes; it?s really difficult,? says Hanlon. ?And you can?t play that many minutes unless you are responsible in all areas of the ice. We?ve said that with everybody, and that?s the first thing. He has learned how to play 4-on-4, which helps get him into the game. All of his minutes have gone up from the start of the year, and that has helped him.?

Semin averaged 15:53 in 11 October games, a modest figure for a guy who opened the season by scoring a goal in six of his first seven games. His ice time went up to 16:52 in November, even though he only scored twice in 10 games during that month. Semin skated 19:07 a night in December and has averaged 18:42 per game thus far in January.

He is capable of scoring from virtually anywhere in the offensive zone, and has displayed a remarkable arsenal of weapons that includes a potent wrist rocket and an underrated backhander. Semin leads the team in power play goals, and many of those have come from the point via a hard slapshot.

Alex Ovechkin was voted into the NHL All-Star Game by the fans, but Semin?s recent surge has shown that he is also a worthy and deserving candidate for All-Star consideration. With 43 points, he is bubbling just under the NHL?s top 30 in scoring. Semin?s impressive array of skill deserves to be on display later this month when the league?s All-Stars convene in Dallas, but he is likely a longshot at best. The league will announce the rest of the rosters for both conferences on Saturday afternoon.

Washington?s power play is 16th in the NHL with a 17.4% success rate. The Caps have not gone consecutive games without a power play goal in more than two months (Nov. 9-11) and have done so only once this season. Washington has netted at least one power play goal in 32 of 44 games in 2006-07. The Caps are 6-for-26 (23.1%) with the extra man in their last five games.

The Capitals? power play unit is 20th in the NHL with a kill rate of 81%.

Florida endured a 4-11-4 patch in its schedule from Nov. 8-Dec. 14, but has gone 6-3-3 in a dozen games since. Florida recently returned from a trip out west; it was in Vancouver as recently as last Sunday.

Saturday night?s game will be the third in four nights for the Panthers. Most recently, the Cats suffered a horrifying 6-4 loss to the Hurricanes in Carolina. The Panthers took a 3-0 lead into the third period of that game, only to watch it evaporate when they surrendered five goals on eight shots in a span of just 8:22.

The loss dropped the Panthers? record against Southeast Division opponents to 2-11-1 this season. The Cats are 0-9-1 in their last 10 visits to Raleigh.

Florida has had its share of injuries this season, and recently suffered another one when defenseman Branislav Mezei was felled by a shoulder separation in Wednesday?s win over Pittsburgh. Mezei is expected to miss about two months worth of action.

Although the Panthers are pulling up the rear in the Southeast Division and they are 14th in the 15-team Eastern Conference standings, the Cats are only five points out of the eighth and final playoff berth in the East.

Saturday night?s game is the 999th in the Panthers? franchise history.

Florida?s power play ranks seventh in the league with a 19% success rate. The Cats are just 3-for-35 (8.6%) with the extra man in their last nine games. The Panthers? penalty killing corps ranks 11th in the league with a kill rate of 83.5%. Florida has killed off 24 of 27 (88.9%) shorthanded situations in its last six games.

Notes: Saturday marks the one-year anniversary of Alex Ovechkin?s first NHL hat trick. It came in a 3-2 overtime win over the Ducks in Anaheim ? Florida is 5-14 in one-goal games. The Panthers are 5-15-6 in games when their opponent scores first; the Caps are 5-15-4 when their opponent scores first ? Florida is 0-9 in overtime games this season, and is 35-73-142 all-time in the extra session ? The Panthers are 1-7-3 in Saturday games this season.

Offline Senators2005

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #27: January 13, 2007, 09:25:53 PM »
Ugh.  5-1 Florida at the end of two periods.   :cry:

Offline Senators2005

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #28: January 13, 2007, 09:50:34 PM »

7-2 with 53 Panther shots on goal, compared to 13 from us....and the game isn't even over yet...

Offline Senators2005

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #29: January 13, 2007, 11:26:33 PM »
Final at BankAtlantic Center

Washington 3
Florida 7
SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) -- Stephen Weiss wasn't sure if he was ever going to get a hat trick

Weiss scored three goals for his first career hat trick and the Florida Panthers beat the Washington Capitals 7-3 on Saturday night.

"It feels good. I was wondering if I was ever going to get one of those," said Weiss, who was playing his 214th game in his fourth NHL season. "It was one of those nights where the bounces went my way. It was a big win and we had a solid game."

Jay Bouwmeester, selected to the Eastern Conference All-Star team earlier in the day, had two goals and two assists for Florida. Chris Gratton and Rostislav Olesz also scored for the Panthers, and Ed Belfour had 14 saves.

Alexander Semin, Matt Pettinger and Chris Clark scored for Washington, which lost its fifth straight on the road. Olaf Kolzig gave up five goals on 41 shots before being replaced by Brent Johnson at the start of the third. Johnson made 10 saves on 12 shots.

The 53 shots were a season high for Florida, which has won four straight at home.

"We knew coming in they are a hard-working team," Bouwmeester said. "We had the incentive to win this one and we were good right from the start."

Washington pulled to 2-1 as Semin poked in a rebound under Belfour's leg at 11:56 of the second for his 25th goal of the season.

Florida stretched its lead to 3-1 about 1 minute later on Weiss's first goal. Kolzig blocked a shot by David Booth but Weiss picked up the rebound and beat Kolzig.

The Panthers added two more goals in the second. Olesz scored on a power play at 17:33 when he stopped a pass with his foot and one-timed it into the net. Bouwmeester's second goal of the game, a shot from the top of the circles, stretched the lead to 5-1.

"We just didn't play well tonight, obviously," Kolzig said. "They responded well (to a loss in their previous game) and we weren't prepared for it. If you're not ready to play or an aspect of your game is a little bit off it's apparent in this league. We just weren't on track."

Weiss's second goal came on a breakaway as he put the puck between Johnson's legs to make it 6-1 at 4:23 of the third.

"We had some big production out of Weiss and Bouwmeester," Panthers coach Jacques Martin said. "We had 12 different players get points.

Pettinger's short-handed goal at 10:09 of the third pulled the Capitals to 6-2. Weiss scored his third goal less than a minute later, and Clark's goal came in the final minute.

"We had no legs," Capitals coach Glen Hanlon said. "We had a bad night all around. To a man, no one had any energy."

The Panthers scored 1:35 into the game as Bouwmeester brought the puck into the right circle and his wrister went over Kolzig's blocker. Gratton made it 2-0 at 12:46 of the first, taking the rebound of Olli Jokinen's shot and pushing the puck past Kolzig.

Online UMDNats

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #30: January 14, 2007, 12:27:23 AM »
I have never turned a game off so early before (turned it off halfway through the 2nd).

The team just didn't show up.

Offline Ali the Baseball Cat

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #31: January 14, 2007, 02:06:59 AM »
I thought it was pretty sad that it took several minutes for someone to toss a cap onto the ice for Weiss's first career NHL hat trick.  Wankers.

Offline Senators2005

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #32: January 15, 2007, 07:47:09 AM »
Johnson Gets Another Term in D.C.
by Mike Vogel on Capitals Website
January 12, 2007

When the Capitals claimed goaltender Brent Johnson off waivers from Vancouver on Oct. 4, 2005, they did so because they liked him as a goaltender. Since his arrival in Washington he has become a better goaltender, and the Caps have also found him to be a very likeable guy. On Friday, the Caps announced they have signed Johnson to a two-year contract extension.

With the 29-year-old native of Farmington, Mich. in the fold for two more seasons beyond the current one, Washington?s goaltending picture becomes a bit clearer. Starter Olie Kolzig, who turns 37 in April, is signed through the 2007-08 season. Johnson?s contract extends a year beyond that.

?I?m very happy here,? says Johnson. ?I know what my position is, and I am just so happy that [Caps general manager] George [McPhee] wanted to get me in here for two more years. It?s a huge confidence boost. Obviously I love all the guys on the team, I love being here and I am thinking about other things in life. Hopefully I will settle down here in Washington and raise a family.?

Originally drafted by the Colorado Avalanche in the fifth round (129th overall) of the 1995 NHL Entry Draft, Johnson was a starter for two seasons with the St. Louis Blues. He had his best campaign in 2001-02 when he won 34 games, with a 2.18 goals against average and a .902 save pct. with St. Louis.

Johnson was even better in the 2002 Stanley Cup playoffs, firing off three straight shutouts as St. Louis ousted Chicago in the opening round. For his career, Johnson sports a 1.84 career goals against average and a .931 save pct. in Stanley Cup playoff competition.

Johnson suffered an ankle injury in 2002-03, prompting the Blues to obtain Chris Osgood at the trading deadline that season. Osgood took over as the starter in St. Louis the following season, which led to Johnson being traded to the Phoenix Coyotes on Mar. 4, 2004.

?The low point in my career was probably in St. Louis, when they told me they were going to send me down and I got picked up by Phoenix,? remembers Johnson. ?Once I got to Phoenix, it was about working on my game and getting back into the groove. That?s pretty much what I did here after the year off, too.?

Johnson signed with the Vancouver Canucks after the lockout, but the Caps claimed him off waivers a month later. After struggling in his first few months in Washington, Johnson settled in and had a very solid second half with the Capitals in 2005-06. He finished the season with a 9-12-1 record, a 3.44 goals against average, and a .905 save pct. Johnson was 5-3 with a 2.40 goals against average and a .940 save pct. during the second half of the 2005-06 campaign. Johnson enjoys playing in Washington, and playing for coach Glen Hanlon, the only former goaltender among the 30 NHL head coaches.

Johnson?s strong finish led to his resigning with Washington last summer. Halfway through this season, he has now signed on for two more. His experience as a starter and in the playoffs gives the Caps a solid counterpart to Kolzig for the remainder of this season and next, and also provides an insurance policy for the 2008-09 season in the event that Kolzig does not sign another contract extension for any reason. Washington spent two of its top three draft choices on netminders in 2006, tabbing Russian Simeon Varlamov and Czech Michal Neuvirth in the first and second rounds, respectively. Neither is expected to be NHL ready in the next two or three seasons.

?The team continues to get better and better,? says Johnson. ?I think that our system is great here, and Glennie is an unbelievable coach. It?s exciting. Who knows what the position will be for me in the next year or two? Hopefully, I will get better and get some more games, and hopefully I will be a starter here one day.?

Offline Senators2005

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CAPS Week 15: Jan 9 - Jan 13
« Reply #33: January 15, 2007, 07:48:01 AM »
This makes me happy.  I think Johnson is going to be somebody to watch as he matures.