Friday, March 02, 2007

Lightning 5 - Capitals 4 (SO): Word of the Day...

Last night's Caps-Lightning contest went to overtime/shootout, with the Caps falling in the 10th round on Nick Tarnasky's goal to win the shootout. After stopping the Lightning's "Big Three" of St. Louis, Lecalavier, and Richards, Johnson proceeded to keep the Capitals alive time after time as player failed to score in the shoout.
Who is Nick Tarnasky and why don't we have him?
The game knocked the Capitals season shootout record to 1 for 11 and showed just what bad shape the team is in terms of skill players. After Semin and Ovechkin (who was kept out of the shootout lineup originally due to his recent struggles), the drop off is very fast.
Drop a penny...wait for it...wait for it...
Because Ovechkin was slated in the #4 spot, should the shootout go that far, coach Glen Hanlon would have to find two other to round out the shootout lineup.
Wait for it...
Brooks Laich and Tomas Fleischmann rounded out the top three, but these two could hardly be looked at as legitimate shootout threats.
Not legitimate NHLers either...wait for it...
But the teams woes last night were their inability to score. The team is third worst in the league in goals scored in the shootout, ahead of only Carolina and the hapless Philadelphia Flyers. But Carolina has only taken 15 shots in the shootout to Washington's 37, and Philly has only taken 26.
Still waiting for that penny to hit the bottom of the talent dropoff...
The sad truth is that with two of the most offensively dynamic players in the shootout, the Capitals only score on 10.8% of their shots in the shootout. That translates to one goal every 3-4 games.
*Plink* There it is!
The Capitals cannot continue to let these games progress to the shootout, because they aren't very good in the shootout!
Or the first period...or the second...
Letting these games extend like this will wear this already depleted team down. They need to keep their spirits up, because the finish line is almost within sight with only 17 games to go in the season.
The other teams are already crossing the finish line.
But give credit to the Caps: they haven't given up on playing. But the fact is, they are just not good enough to hope for anything beyond a lottery pick. So slow up Capitals! Let the Flyers, Blackhawks, and Blue Jackets storm on past you. Because the farther behind you get, the earlier the pick in June. And then in October, it begins again.
The Marathon
And that's your word of the day...


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