Friday, January 9, 2009

Capitals Pre-Game & Assorted Rambings

Turnabout is fair play, I guess. When the Caps visited the Jackets, they were depleted by injuries, ran into a hot new goaltender named Mason, and walked away on the wrong end of a 3 - 0 decision.

Tonight, it will be the Bluejackets heading into D.C. in an ambulance to face the Capitals, who have but 1 regulation loss at home this season. We are accustomed to Ovechkin & Co. putting some big numbers on the boards, but lately have been winning with defense, coming off of back to back 2 - 1 victories.

The CBJ injury situation has been belabored to death, so won't do it again here. Mason needs to step up strong again, obviously, and we need to keep the strong defense in place. With Filatov up, maintain energy and possession in the offensive zone, and "Capital" ize on our chances. (Sorry, had to do it). As always, stay out of the box.

If we had cashed in our chances against Detroit early, that would have been a different game. Same deal here. We can shut them down, but need to show the same energy we had the other night in Detroit. Wins tonight and tomorrow at home would be huge, with Huselius and Nash likely returning next week.

In other news:

--More hubbub about the old "distinct kicking motion" rule after last night's Edmonton game. They need to scrap the whole concept of "kicking", IMHO. The intent is to prevent an offensive player from intentionally directing the puck into the net with his skate. (And yes, I am aware that existing rule does not prohibit "directing" , just "kicking", but that is my point.) Disallow goals where the skate was moved with the purpose of contacting the puck. Period. If the skate never moves, goal is good. If it moves to make contact, no goal. Look at the players eyes, and the surrounding circumstances to judge intent. The problem now is that lots of motions can look like a kick during the course of normal skating. If contact is made incidentally, it is a goal. Your thoughts?

--Young Stars get announced today. Mason should be a lock, but what about Voracek? Could be interesting.

--Trade rumors have died down a bit at the moment, which is probably how Howson wants it. When we get Nash and Huselius back next week, I think things will fire up. Probably a few more Toronto and/or Ottawa losses will not hurt either.

--With some healthy bodies, Jackets are poised to have a good run, with a majority of home games from here out. It will be fun to watch.

Go Jackets!

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