February 29, 2008

Capitals Vs Devils 02/29/2008 Review

The Washington Capitals, along with new goaltender Cristobal Huet and new center Sergei Fedorov, shut out Martin Brodeur and the New Jersey Devils. The Capitals seemed to be in control for the entire game. Huet only faced 18 shots, but was solid in net, getting the shutout in his first game with Washington. Fedorov finished his first game as a Cap, with 1 assist and 3 shots. He also won 10 out of 13 faceoffs. The win in this final game of the regular season series vs the Devils brings the record to 2-2.
This was a quick moving game, especially in the first period. Fedorov did spend 2:00 in the penalty box for a roughing call toward the end of the period. But otherwise, he was amazing. He skates as well and as fast as anybody. Obviously, he doesn't shy away from hitting. Meanwhile, Huet had no trouble stopping all six shots fired his way by New Jersey. Washington only managed four shots on Brodeur, and the period ended 0-0.

The second period was a little more interesting. Cap's forward David Steckel had a couple good chances early on, but was unable to get the puck into the net. Toward the middle of the period, Huet made a couple excellent saves, including a big one on a Zach Parise breakaway. Washington went on the power play at 10:36, when Andy Greene was called for tripping. Brodeur was able to stop shots by Sergei Fedorov, Alex Ovechkin and Mike Green during the 2:00 man advantage. But, the Cap's got the PP goal at 11:27 on a snapshot from Green. The play started with a perfect no look backward pass from Fedorov to Alexander Semin, who sent the puck over to Green. That would be the only goal of the period. During the last few minutes of the second, both goalies were able to stop all shots. Washington forward Viktor Kozlov took one in the body for a stop as well. The stats were pretty even through two periods, except the Capitals were well ahead in faceoffs.

Just 43 seconds into the third period, Kozlov scored his 13th goal of the season. This time, Nicklas Backstrom left a drop pass for Ovechkin, who sent a cross ice pass to Viktor. Kozlov then roofed a short side wrister, making the score 2-0. At 5:47, the Devil's Patrik Elias high sticked Mike Green. He was awarded a 4:00 double minor for bloodying Mike's nose in the process. The Cap's moved the puck very well during the power play, as they had for the whole game. A frustrated Ovechkin, wasn't able to hit the mark. As they had been doing throughout the game, the Cap's were cycling the puck, forcing Brodeur back and forth in front of his net. Then, defenseman Tom Poti sent a cross ice pass to Semin. Alex's wrist shot went in for his 20th goal on the season. Toward the end of the period, Poti got another assist. He got the puck to Matt Bradley, who passed it to Donald Brashear in the slot. Brashear's top shelf slapper put the Capitals ahead 4-0.

It was Huet's third shutout of the season, and the 16th of his career. Washington made it look easy. It was their second straight win, and their second consecutive four goal game. There wasn't much, if anything you could complain about. Plenty of scoring, fine goaltending, and the defense pretty much kept the Devils toward the outer limits of the Cap's zone. Plenty to smile about. After the game, head coach Bruce Boudreau complimented his players for their efforts. When asked, he said netminder Olie Kolzig would get the start in tomorrow's home game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
All Photos - Bill Kostroun / AP


usually frustrated caps fan said...

Things will indeed go well for our Caps if they can keep up this momentum through the bulk of March and make a platoon between Huet and Kolzig work going into the playoffs. LETS GO CAPS!!!! next up Toronto at VC today.

Dan, Jr. said...

Agreed. I hope Johnny gets some time in there too. I can't help but feel somewhat sorry for Kolzig and Johnson, with the 3 goalie situation. But, especially for Brent. I thought they would go after another goalie this summer. I can understand taking the deal that was offered. But, on a personal level, I can understand feelings being hurt. Getting Huet is definitely exciting. However, he's not Patrick Roy (my personal all time fav) yet!


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