The 18-year-old playmaker has stepped up for Mauro Biello’s side, scoring in a 1-0 win at D.C. United on Saturday.
Washington is still alive because its stars finally showed up.
And until Game 5, the star power was shining mostly for one side.
Consider that Sidney Crosby scored twice in the series-opener, on Washington ice no less. And less than a minute apart. When he left with a concussion in Game 3, Evgeni Malkin stepped up and delivered the Penguins a miraculous two-goal comeback to force overtime. When the short-handed Penguins needed big stops in Game 4, Marc-Andre Fleury turned aside 36 shots in a one-goal game.
That’s a lot of words to state the obvious: the Penguins had been able to string together big moments from big players when they needed them most. The Capitals hadn’t, and that’s why they faced the chopping block in Game 5.
And in what seemed like a span of five minutes in the third period on Saturday, the Capitals got that string and saved their season.
Down by one goal, Nicklas Backstrom scored after an unusually quiet night (he had scored in two straight games).
Then, a series of Holtby stops in tight.
A wicked, wicked shot from Evgeny Kuznetsov to gain the lead.
And a typical Alex Ovechkin goal: a gallop down the wing, a slice through traffic and a game-sealing wrister.
There they are.
If the Capitals had lost, bowed out of the playoffs early once again in front of their own fans, blame would rightly be laid at the feet of those four players. Not to mention the other notable Capitals: Kevin Shattenkirk has had a miserable playoffs, Andre Burakovsky went silent for four games, and T.J. Oshie hasn’t been noticeable. Even Noted Playoff Moment-Riser-Man Justin Williams hasn’t made a big impact in this series.
The inability to put away this Penguins team, hobbled with an ailing Crosby, no Kris Letang, a beat-up blueline and a cast of youthful but raw forwards would be the highest playoffs disappointment for a franchise full of them.
So credit where it’s due. Sure, to Capitals coach Barry Trotz. He desperately blended his lines, putting Ovechkin on the third line with Lars Eller and Tom Wilson and Burakovsky with Backstrom and Oshie. But line-blending is just the first step. It’s up to those star players (the envy of every other team in the NHL) to do something about this elimination game.
And they did it. For one game, the Washington Capitals looked like the Washington Capitals. For one desperate night, the best players on the NHL’s best regular season team actually played like it.
For their sake, they should hope they didn’t show up to the party too late.
In a tantrum for the ages, the Estudiantes boss decided to show off his upper body after being sent to the stands
Hanover, NJ – The Holy Cross Hospital announced today that they have hired off-duty United Airlines security guards to help re-accommodate drug seekers from their overbooked ER. Previous attempts including placing a large bowl of Percocet in the waiting room failed to deter even the most ardent drug seekers. Holy Cross ER Department Chairman Dr. […]
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Pope Francis made it clear he’s ashamed people would refer to a bomb as a giver of life.
The post ‘We call this device a mother?’ Holy Father ashamed by nickname given to MOAB appeared first on twitchy.com.
Get it, JVG!
During the Game 3 broadcast of Warriors-Jazz, Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson’s discussion about Van Gundy’s daughter graduating from the University of Georgia quickly devolved into a debate over Van Gundy’s dancing skills. What do you think?
Jeff Van Gundy boldly claimed that he was, “made to dance to The Spinners, Rubberband Man.” In case you aren’t familiar with the song, here it is.
“The spinners wrote that song for me,” Van Gundy proudly claimed.
Marc Jackson’s reaction was this, basically.
Most importantly, Van Gundy said someone has video of him shaking his tail feather in Athens, and we need this.