Friday, December 14, 2007

Slimy Loss

Well...that was just ugly.

Photo courtesy of AP
The Caps dominated most of this game, especially the second period, but only one of their goals was pretty (Backstrom scoring off a beautiful Kozlov feed is something I could get used to seeing) and none of the Sabres' goals were pretty.

There may have been a bit of sitting back in the last 10 minutes, though - it was like the Caps got a little too confident in their ability to win in overtime that they forgot they had to at least maintain a tie in order to get there. The game-winning goal was simply a product of puck possession and hard work by the Sabres, enabled by a Caps team that was running around. You can't blame Olie on that one...he takes enough of the blame on one or two of the other goals.

And of course once again the ice picked up a few assists, aiding Olie's already renowned stickhandling skills in Buffalo's first goal and evening things out with the fluky bounce that led to Laich's tying goal.

But it was just ugly. Too many men on the ice calls going both ways, bad bounces, incomplete passes - ugly ugly ugly. If the Caps were the better team as I believe they were, it's certainly a relative term.

So what was good?

The Caps did do a good job of staying in the game after Buffalo scored, whether it was a tying goal or a go-ahead goal. And give Ryan Miller a lot of credit for making some huge saves in the first two periods to even give his team a chance to score the tying or go-ahead goal. And the crowd seemed loud and energized (although I know for a fact there were too many Sabres fans there). And...

Hmm. I'm out of good things. It was a rough game.

Big picture - every streak comes to an end, and while we would have preferred a longer one, the Caps are still very much in the game. Just look at the standings and the point difference between 15th and 5th (it's 9 points, by the way). Look at the fact that the Caps continue to spread the scoring around (Ovechkin, Backstrom, Laich, Nylander, Kozlov, Jurcina and Poti all picked up points tonight). Look at the way this team continues to play, even with the loss - and look at how well they've bounced back from losses in the last few weeks.

Watch out, Tampa.


Christopher said...

The Caps can add this one to the list of games that they have given away this season. A couple of thoughts:

While the last goal was not Olie's fault, I wanted to throw my beer at his head when he let in another wrap-around goal.

Semin is skating better but is making some bad decisions with the puck.

The coaching staff seems to have been spoiled by Brashear's 2 assist night against the Rangers. Why he was out there when the Sabres scored the winning goal I will never understand.

Oh, and one other thing. Is anyone else scared to death of that Jurcina-Poti pairing?

Anonymous said...

well since we could not get a stoppage in play, he was stuck on the ice like his line-mates and the defense

Christopher said...

Anonymous: I am aware of that. I don't see why he was on the ice in a tie game with 5 minutes left in the third in the first place.