Thursday, January 18, 2007

Gameday Preview: Caps vs. Hurricanes

Who: Your Nation’s Capitals vs. Carolina Hurricanes
Where: RBC Center
1400 Edwards Mill Road
Raleigh, NC 27607
When: Thursday, January 18, 7:00 pm

Broadcast Info: CSN, WTEM 980 AM; FSN South, WWMY 102.9 FM

Media Notes:
WashingtonCaps.com
CarolinaHurricanes.com
NHL.com
Washington Post
Washington Times
Raleigh News & Observer

2006-07 Season Series: Caps 1-2-0, Hurricanes 2-1-0

2006-07 Standings: Caps 19-20-7, 45 points – 4th in division, 13th in conference; Hurricanes 25-18-5, 55 points – 2nd in division, 6th in conference

Last Game: November 17 in Washington, Caps lost 4-1
- The two teams played a fairly even first period, with shots just about equal and no goals through twenty minutes. Then, as was becoming a trend, the Caps proceeded to fall apart in the second period.
- Two power play goals in less than two minutes late in the second would put the Hurricanes in the lead for good, as the Caps were unable to muster up any sort of a rally.
- I don’t know if the Caps knew this at the time, but that guy Brind’amour isn’t too shabby. Neither is his buddy Erik Cole. Both had multi-point games, and Cole factored into all 4 Canes tallies.
- The only Caps marker came from Richard Zednik (remember him? I think he used to play for us at one point…) with assists from Clymer and Beech on the power play. And that was all she wrote.
- This game was marked by the absence of Chris Clark, who was missing his first game after taking a puck in the mouth a few days before. Semin would leave the game in the third with an injury described by McPhee as being “somewhere on the body”. Thanks, George.
- Ovechkin was playing in his 100th NHL game yet had no goals, no assists, and no shots on goal until the third period. How very un-Ovechkin-like.

Things to Look for:
- Well, if you were hoping for another struggling opponent to help the Caps snap out of this funk, you came to the wrong place. The Hurricanes have won four of their last five games, which basically means...ruh-roh.
- Who needs the playoffs when you have the NHL’s helpful schedulers creating a playoff atmosphere in January? The Caps again face the Hurricanes three times over the next week, starting tonight in Carolina and continuing with a home and home set next weekend. I’d like to see some intensity, some fight in this Caps team during that stretch.
- The Caps will be without Mike Green, who took an Andrej Meszaros slapshot to the leg Tuesday night and is now on crutches. Jeff Schultz returns to the lineup in relief of the injured Green – his last stint was streaky at best, although there were some good moments out of the young defender. We’ll need to see more of that if the Caps are going to come out of this road trip alive.
- The Caps power play has sputtered lately and fell from 14th to 17th after the Ottawa game, and it won’t help that Carolina’s penalty kill is among the top 10 in the league. However, the Hurricanes are shorthanded quite a bit and the Caps need to make them pay, especially if their 5-on-5 play doesn’t improve significantly.

Possible Lineup for the Caps
Forwards:
8-Alex “Coming Through” Ovechkin, 9-Dainius “Clank” Zubrus, 17-Chris “Shortie” Clark
28-Alexander “the Best Kept Secret” Semin, 15-Boyd “2nd Line Killer” Gordon, 18-Matt “Along for the Ride” Pettinger
10-Matt “Unassisted” Bradley, 16-Brian “the Forechecking Fool” Sutherby, 27-Ben “Alex” Clymer
87-Donald “Threading the Needle” Brashear, 24-Kris “Back Again…” Beech, 21-Brooks “What’s Not to” Laich

Defensemen:
3-Lawrence “Eminger’s New Bestest Friend” Nycholat, 44-Steve “the Scoring Machine” Eminger
2-Brian “Boards are Tricky” Pothier, 55-Jeff “No More Jitters” Schultz
6-Jamie “the Remote Hog” Heward, 26-Shaone “Oh No Mo” Morrisonn

Goaltenders:
1-Brent “Your Turn, Olie” Johnson, 37-Olie “Ready Aim Fire…Again” Kolzig

Possible Lineup for the Hurricanes
Forwards:
13-Ray “Former Oilers Stick Boy” Whitney, 17-Rod “Caps (and Lady) Killer” Brind’Amour, 26-Erik “Caps Killer 2: The Wrath of” Cole
11-Justin “Body Slammed” Williams, 12-Eric “the Eldest” Staal, 61-Cory “Matthews” Stillman
59-Chad “In the Spring, Becomes” LaRose, 25-Eric “Southern” Belanger, 24-Scott “Jay” Walker
16-Andrew “Cheryl” Ladd, 27-Craig “the Only” Adams, 19-Trevor “The Big” Letowski

Defensemen:
2-Glen “Old Man” Wesley, 22-Mike “Fro Boy” Commodore
7-Niclas “London Bridge is” Wallin, 45-David Tanabe “Knees”
4-Dennis “Dressing on the” Seidenberg, 48-Anton “How Much Wood Could a” Babchuk

Goaltenders:
30-Cam “Babyface” Ward, 47-John “Golden” Grahame

1 comment:

hockeygirl said...

48-Anton “How Much Wood Could a” Babchuk

HA HA HA! I can count on you to make me laugh. :)