Saturday, January 20, 2007

Gameday Preview: Caps vs. Panthers

Who: Your Nation's Capitals vs. Florida Panthers
Where: Verizon Center
601 F Street NW
Washington, DC 20004
When: Saturday, January 20, 1:00 pm

Broadcast Info: CSN, WTEM 980 AM; FSN Florida, Sports Radio 560WQAM

Media Notes:
Washington Post
Washington Times
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Miami Herald

Last Game: January 13 in Florida, Caps lost 7-3
- I didn't see this game or even watch highlights (if there were any) - but I think it's safe to say that the Caps need to take everything they did that night and do the exact opposite today. From all accounts it was ugly...

Things to Look for:
- The Caps are coming off a victory to end their season's longest road trip, and they earned those two points in decisive fashion. Momentum seems to mean very little to this team except for when they're slumping, but I'd like to see them come out of the gate with the same energy we saw Thursday night.
- Chris Clark, Alex Ovechkin, Boyd Gordon, Olie Kolzig, and the rest all need to bring their A game against the Cats. It's possible they were overlooking Florida as a bottom-dweller last week, and they should know better than that. No team is easily beatable anymore, and the Panthers have gained some respectability over the last few weeks. All of a sudden the Caps are looking over their shoulder only to see Florida sitting just two points behind them.
- Olie Kolzig had what was probably one of his best games of the season Thursday night; one thing the Caps hadn't been getting from either Olie or Johnny during the little losing streak was consistent goaltending. If Olie can continue to make the big saves, it will give this team even more confidence.
- Ovechkin's point streak continued with an empty-netter against Carolina and now extends to 8 games, a career high. However, he didn't seem to have his best game against the Canes. He's allowed a bad night here and there, but I'd expect him to bounce back with a vengeance today.
- Assorted bumps and bruises may keep some of the guys out of the lineup, so it's tough to say what we're going to see on the ice for Glen Hanlon - Brash, Semin, Pothier and Green are all nursing bumps, bruises and illness and it will probably be a game-time decision for all of them.

Possible Lineups for the Caps
8-Alex "Empty-Netter" Ovechkin, 9-Dainius "Clank" Zubrus, 17-Chris "Double Empty-Netter" Clark
28-Alexander "the Fluke" Semin, 15-Boyd "Jack of All Trades" Gordon, 18-Matt "Princess" Pettinger
10-Matt "Reunited" Bradley, 16-Brian "And it Feels" Sutherby, 27-Ben "So Good" Clymer
87-Donald "Thread the Needle, Take 2" Brashear, 24-Kris "Invisible on the 4th Line" Beech, 21-Brooks "Too Good for the 4th Line" Laich

3-Lawrence "Eminger's New Bestest Friend" Nycholat, 44-Steve "At Last" Eminger
2-Brian “Mysterious Illness” Pothier, 55-Jeff “Sarge (?)" Schultz
6-Jamie “the Remote Hog” Heward, 26-Shaone “With a Rebel Yell, Mo Mo” Morrisonn

1-Brent "Wheeeere's Johnny?" Johnson, 37-Olie “the Savior” Kolzig

Possible Lineup for the Panthers
77-Chris "Potatoes Au" Gratton, 12-Olli "I Was Only" Jokinen, 15-Jozef "Tree" Stumpel
23-Martin "He's Like Magellan, He's So" Gelinas, 85-Rostislav "Ole Ole Ole" Olesz, 16-Nathan Horton "Hears a Who"
9-Stephen "Cap-Killer??" Weiss, 18-Ville "or Won't He" Peltonen, 46-David "Dunking" Booth
54-Kamil Kreps "Suzette", 13-"For" Juraj "Only" Kolnik, 11-Gregory "Mmm Mmm Good" Campbell

4-Jay "Token All-Star" Bouwmeester, 5-Bryan "Ethan" Allen
24-Ruslan Salei "Forth", 26-Mike "Mini" Van Ryn
8-Joel "Kiwi" Kwiatkowski, 7-Steve Montador

20-Ed "the Balding Eagle" Belfour, 35-Alex Auld "Lang Syne"

Ooh...I fear these may be some of the worst nicknames I've done yet. Sorry about that!


Anonymous said...

if you hadn't figured it out all ready, Coach Hanlon called Schultz 'Sarge' referencing a well-loved character on the 60's sitcom 'Hogan's Heroes' (Sergeant Schultz). i'd be willing to bet a kidney #55 has no clue what Hanlon thought was so funny.'s_Heroes

(i'm a dork)

btw, i'm primarily a Wings fan but have a special hometown love for the Caps. really look forward to reading your blog before games! - hannah

Netsy said...

Would you like some apfel schtroodil?

Oh, and maybe some of the nicknames were bad, but "Chris 'Potatoes Au' Gratton" more than makes up for it. ;)