31 January 2010
There was another game on this afternoon? It wasn't just the Pens v. the Wings on NBC? Because that OT was a helluva 5 minutes of hockey. Why hello there you 3pm start time on a Sunday....
The Lightning played a game where their worst enemy was not the Caps, but the magnetic ability for the puck to hit the goal posts. The first two periods for the Lightning was a little ho hum and far too much play in their own end. Smith was in net today after missing six games with a neck strain, but looked a little slow in net and perhaps should have waited to start until Tuesday's game against the Thrashers.
Going into the 3rd period, the Caps were already up by two goals. The Lightning scored a pair of goals in the third period, the 1st from St. Louis and the 2nd on the powerplay from Stamkos (his 29th of the season) but never was able to get another for the game winner. Ovechkin ended their rally with a goal wrister at 13:34. Lecavalier got testy in the dying minutes of the third period, which would have been useful if there was more than 12 seconds left in the game. But can you really get a game tying goal with 90 seconds left having your checking line out there? In Tocchet's mind you can, though it doesn't seem to work in reality. In the end Lecavalier got tossed for unsporstmanlike conduct after he had some choice words to the officials after being tossed out of the faceoff circle.
This was the Caps' 10th consecutive victory to tie their franchise record. The Caps played without Mike Green as he was serving the 1st of his 3 game suspension for the elbow on Frolik from Friday night.
In other news, the Lightning have sent down center Paul Szczechura to the Admirals for a conditioning stint today.