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Czarlamov: Washington Capitals 6, Montreal Canadiens 3

In a game tied until less than 9 minutes remained in the 3rd period, the Washington Capitals were able to add 4 goals to best the Montreal Canadiens and take a 3-1 lead in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Caps and the Habs were able to trade blows early with Alex Ovechkin‘s power play tally being answered by a Mike Cammalleri goal 1 minute later in the first, followed by Brian Gionta‘s goal with a man advantage being countered by Mike Knuble‘s shorthanded goal in the second. The floodgates opened for Washington in the third, with an additional goal from the Great 8, Jason Chimera‘s first of the post season, and empty-net goals by Knoobs and Nicklas Backstrom. Dominic Moore was able to round out the scoring for the Habs with 1:18 remaining in the game. The Capitals head back to Washington, DC on Friday for the fifth game of this Eastern Conference quarterfinal, and can solidify their trip to the next round with a win.

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Those are the eyes of someone determined to win. And of someone that wants you to make the jump.

The Good:

- Semyon Varlamov. Wow. Just… wow.

- Sound the alarm, the power play drought has ended! 1-for-19 is not where I’d like to be, but it’s a start – right? right??

- Following a Marc-Andre Bergeron turnover behind the net in Montreal’s zone, Jason Chimera finished a great shift by lighting the lamp for what would be the eventual game winner. JC25, along with the entire fourth line, looked great all game (again).

- For the most part, the Caps’ game was complete tonight and (more importantly) they were able to keep focused in a hostile environment facing a buzzing Montreal team that is full of fight.

The Bad:

- While there was a bright spot or two, Mike Green spent another post-season game looking lost and overwhelmed.

- A Too Many Men on the Ice penalty when trying to shift the momentum in your corner can not happen. Eric Fehr, please count to 5 next time?

- Remember the APB we put out on Alex Semin, who has been missing from the scoresheet all series? We’re now extending that to include Tomas Fleischmann, who has been just as absent. Maybe Gabby should bench Flash, so we see him get ticked-off and score another GWG?

The Ugly:

- The Caps allowed 21 shots on goal in the second period. If Varly hadn’t spent the entire period on his head, the Caps would be heading back to the Verizon Center to continue a series tied 2-2.

- Montreal’s netminder Carey Price put on a clinic last night as well – of how not to react when scored on. He was called for two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in the third period; one after shooting the puck toward the celebratory gathering after Chimmer’s goal and then taking a blatant Nancy Kerrigan-esque slash at Nicky B’s legs after his empty-netter. There’s no place for this in hockey. There’s No place for this in any sport, really.

- Possibly, our new shirt. Why don’t you take a look and let us know what you think?

BeardWatch 2k10:

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