Monday, November 23, 2009
Stop me if you've heard this one before. The Caps squandered a third period lead tonight and did so by being outworked and by taking foolish penalties. The sad song remains the same. After a nearly textbook team defensive effort for 40 minutes, the visiting team either ran out of gas or lost interest.It sure looked like the Senators were ready to roll over after two periods. Washington had them demoralized and had taken just about all the life out of the crowd at Scotia Bank Place.Three unanswered goals for D.C. put them in a position to win tonight. Chris Clark's disputed goal was set up perfectly by Brian Pothier. BrendanMorrison took a pretty pass from Mike Green after a defensive lapse by the Senators. ThenJonathan Cheechoo gave Jay Beagle the puck on a platter 15-feet in front of Ottawa's goalie and it looked like the Caps were on easy street. Well, not quite.The Senators resurrected their hopes with an early third period tip-in from Chris Neil. This game was full of tip-in tallies. It was one redirect after another. When Alex Ovechkin got called for roughing in the third, Ottawa could sense a huge momentum shift. AlexandrePicard blasted one past a screened Semyon Varlamov and it was a brand new hockey game.
Once we got to overtime Mike Green made a couple of ill-advised moves which lead to Ottawa scoring chances. Varlamov made a stunning save on Jason Spezza to pull their butts out fo the fire, only to see Mike Fisher end the game seconds later on the business end of another odd man rush. Bruce Boudreau would say afterwards it was a total collapse of 20 guys and that Ottawa ultimately wanted it more. Varlamov deserved a better fate. Beagle's first NHL goal celebration will be somewhat muted as a result.
And now the injury-riddled Caps come home to face the Northeast Division leading Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday. Cheer loudly Caps fans the boys need some inspiration to snap out of this skid.