Who: Caps-Flyers, you know the drill... Great moments are born from great opportunity. And that's what you have here tonight, boys. That's what you've earned here, tonight. One game.
Where: Wachovia Center, home of the worst orange shirts in the world
When: Today, 7:00 pm. Bring your protective cups.
We all know that there's no time to pat ourselves on the backs and celebrate that one win because it's just that - one win. Two more are needed to move on, or so it says in the NHL rulebook. So two more it is.
And to get those two more they need to take what they did in the first two periods of Game 5 and replicate it for 60 minutes this time. Then do it again on Tuesday. What the Caps did in Game 5 was come out guns blazing, throwing their bodies and the puck around until the Flyers were dizzy.
22-9: the hit ratio in the first. 12-4: the shot ratio in the first. 1-0: the score in the first.
All good things, and yet all good things that can be improved upon, or at the very least repeated. This team has the skill, the drive, the youth, the experience, to do all those things and do it in front of a hostile crowd. They know how to get it done; whether they do it or not remains to be seen.
It's not hard to see what works for this team. They have size. They have speed. They have the ability to shoot the puck. So it's no surprise that when they dump the puck in, when they make the simple plays to gain the zone...9 times out of 10 they keep the zone. Keep it and put pressure on and generate a scoring chance, if not a goal. It's the reason why when they do just that they look like a team that could make some noise - and not just a whimper.
And it's what we should expect to see tomorrow night, or else start thinking about next year.
The inspirational thing seemed to work last time out so we'll do this again, this time with help from our pal Kurt (channeling Herb Brooks):
If we played 'em ten times, they might win nine. But not this game. Not tonight.
Tonight, we skate with 'em.
Tonight, we stay with 'em, and we shut them down because we can!
Tonight, we are the greatest hockey team in the world.
You were born to be hockey players -- every one of ya. And you were meant to be here tonight. This is your time. Their time -- is done. It's over.
I'm sick and tired of hearin' about what a great hockey team the [Flyers] have. Screw 'em!
This is your time!! Now go out there and take it!
And finally, if that doesn't get the blood boiling how about a little inspirational help from yours truly...with assistance from (and apologies to) the legendary Van Halen:
There may not be a tomorrow
So put it all out there today
One more walk into Philly
With only "vengeance" in our way
From two games down we're clawing back
But we've gotta push to get even
Just let them whine, we know the truth, we're moving on
Hey - come on turn, turn this thing around
Hey, let's take it to 'em
Catch that magic midget, do it
Right here and now
It takes everything
They can shut down Ovechkin
Others come to take his place
With our own Russian army
Standing right in Biron's face
The more checks you throw, the more you crave
And even Semin's getting in it
With black and orange flying through the air
Come on bring game 7 to DC
Right now, hey
We want tomorrow
We want a miracle
Put the fight to Philly do it
Right here and now
It means everything
It's gutcheck time...right now
What are you waitin' for?
Oh, yeah, right now!
Catch that magic midget, dropkick him right
Right now, oh, right now
We're coming for you...right here and now
Right now...it's right now
Let's Go Caps!!
Great moments are born from great opportunity.
And that's what you have here tonight, boys. That's what you've earned here, tonight. One game.