Livin’ Lars! Capitals 6, Canadiens 5 (OT)

Rallying behind goals from Eric Fehr, Alex Ovechkin, John Carlson and three from Nicklas Backstrom, the Washington Capitals were able to tie up the first series of the 2010 Stanley Cup playoffs with the Montreal Canadiens at 1 game apiece with an overtime victory Saturday night.

The Caps found themselves in a 2-0 deficit early, following goals from the Habs’ Brian Gionta and Andrei Kostitsyn on the first two shots they served to Jose Theodore.After Coach Bruce Boudreau called on Semyon Varlamovto spell Theo, Kostitsyn added two more tallies to amount a 4-1 lead over DC.  The real Washington Capitals finally took the ice late in the second, when Lars Backstrom added his second goal of the post season with 1:37 remaining in the middle stanza. Ovie potted his first early in the third, Nicky quickly added his second of the game, and the real American hero tied the game with 1:21 left to send the game to overtime. Just 31 seconds into the extra inning, Lars threw a wicked wrister past Jaroslav Halak to send the series to Montreal tied at one.


Gomez: “Team Jacob!” Poti: “NO! Team Edward is better!”

Okay, maybe not. But make the jump to find out what they’re really fighting about.

The Good:

– The Team America Defensive pairing were both on fire tonight. Aside from Carly’s blast to tie the game at 5, he added an assist on Ovie’s goal and finished +2 on the night. Tom Poti managed to make up for some bonehead plays as of late by keeping the Caps energized and the momentum in their corner by stepping up and dropping Scott Gomez in the third.

– Jose Theodore. Not in the “nothing-gets-past-me” way, but in the awesome sportsmanship way. When the game was over, who was the first member of the Caps squad to congratulate Czarlamov? That’s right, it was Theo.

– Welcome to the show, Alex Ovechkin. Aside from being a stat keepers dream with 1 goal, 3 assists, a +3 +/- rating, 6 SOG and 8 hits in his 20:22 on the ice, he looked more focused on his quest for the cup.

– Right now, I’d hate to fight Eric Belanger for anything. After going 11-for-15 on the dot Saturday night, he’s now 29-for-36 (81%) during the series.

– I’m not sure I need to go into much more detail than this: Nicklas Backstrom. How Swede it is, indeed.

The Bad:

– Can someone put Alex Semin‘s face on a milk box? Aside from taking useless penalties and turning the puck over, I haven’t seen anything from the guy.

Dave Steckel, did you touch fingers Freaky Friday style with Belly? Not only did we see only 37% success on the dot for the night, Stecks was the only Cap that spent single digit minutes on the ice (8:51).

– I’m not quite sure who didn’t cover their man, but Jeff Schultz and Mike Green were on the ice for 4 of the 5 Montreal goals.  I’m not sure when the communication breakdown between Sarge and MG came into play but these guys better share a cab on the way to the airport, sit in the same aisle on the plane, and room together.

The Ugly:

– The Capitals power play was unsuccessful once again, going 0-for-3. Boudreau said of his 0-for-7 PP: it’s “struggling beyond struggling.”