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The Elusive 50th Win: Capitals 3, Flames 5

For the third straight game the Washington Capitals were unable to claim win number 50 on the season, dropping Sunday’s matinee to the Calgary Flames. One day after being white-washed 5-0 by the Boston Bruins, ten members of the Flames roster made their way to the scorer’s sheet on goals by Ales Kotalik, Ian White, Jay Bouwmeester, Niklas Hagman and Rene Bourque. While the Caps’ outcome was nothing to cheer about, Alex Ovechkin was able to light the lamp for the 46th time on the year (moving to 2nd behind Sidney Crosby who netted two against Toronto in Pittsburgh’s 5-4 win) with a nasty wrister in the second, and Nicklas Backstrom became only the 5th Capital to score 90 points in a season.

The Good, Bad, and the Ugly of the Caps collapse – after the jump.

The Good:

- For the fourth time in his last five seasons, the Great 8 was able to reach the 100 point plateau. How to celebrate? I’d love a re-make of this commerical:

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- We kept hearing about the fire that Jason Chimera possesses. We saw it today after he got rough-and-tumble with Cory Sarich, who nailed Chimera with a suspendable hit into the boards, added a cross-check to his face for good measure, and then dropped the mitts for a brief moment.

- How ’bout John Erskine, who (while proving he still can’t hold onto a stick to save his life) quietly chipped in on all accounts today: 2 blocked shots, 4 hits, glared menacingly when things looked to be getting out of hand, and along with Jeff Schultz did an excellent job keeping the puck in the Capitals’ offensive zone.

- While other moments of Dave Steckel‘s game were forgettable, taking 8-of-10 draws was nice, and his stuff attempt that resulted in a goal was a great example of always fighting for the next point – no matter what the score.

The Bad:

- Three of the Flames’ goals were scored as result of a goalie deflection. Some were bad luck, some were on defensive meltdowns. Either way, they need to be ironed out before to long.

- Not one member on the Caps roster finished on the positive side of the plus/minus. Not that this would be uncommon when giving up 5 goals, but it sure as hell kills my Capitals Fantasy score.

- Joe Freaking Corvo – stay on your feet, and on your man. That is all.

- Since the first rule about Washington Capitals goaltending is that you always discuss Washington Capitals goaltending, here’s my two cents: 4 goals against in 10:34 for Jose Theodore is nothing to brag about, but Theo always uses the first few minutes of a contest to his advantage to find his groove. When the men in front of you look disinterested and appear to be skating in quicksand, it’s extremely hard to find that groove.

The Ugly:

- The fans at the Verizon Center who booed the Caps as they headed to the locker room during the first intermission. Seriously people- this team has only lost at home 9 times this season, is a repeating Southeastern Division champion, leads the NHL in points and is moments from claiming the Eastern Conference title and the President’s Trophy. Leave the Philadelphia in Pennsylvania.

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