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Saturday, February 14, 2009

History made in Tampa Bay/Caps prove alot

One might ask, what can the caps prove against a weak lightning team? Watching the game it showed why the Caps ARE the best team in the east. To me right now and to most observers they are the favorites in the east. The caps are 2-0-1 against the Bruins, 2-0-2 vs the Devils, and 2-0-0 against the defending eastern champions Pittsburgh Penguins. This team, right now, can not be stopped when they are able to get average goaltending. They have too many goal scorers and just enough D to keep opponents at bay. Against the Lightning, this combination proved deadly. After the first period the score was 3-0 in favor of the Caps, and Washington never looked back.

What else did they prove? They also proved that they'll be a force for many years to come. Rookie goaltender Michal Neuvirth made his first career start and was dominant against the lightning. The great thing is, the caps also have a rookie goaltender in Almanzar, how is 2-0-0 in his first two games in the NHL. The caps also used the help of young guns, Semin, OV, Mike Green, and Backstrom. All of whom are under 25 years of age, with OV as the oldest at 24.

Now to the game itself

1st period- What stood out the most in the first period was the play of rookie goaltender of Michal Neuvirth. He stopped all 12 shots on goal, and made some impressive saves, including a break away shot by Martin St. Louis. The highlight of the period was a OV goal, when he took a turnover stormed down the ice, and shot a wicked wrister by the Lightning goalie. The lowlight was a Shaone Morrisonn goal, that had no reason to go in the net. It was that type of period for the lightning. Morrison shot the puck with low velocity past two defenders with there sticks up and yet still went in. After that goal Mike McKenna (Lightning goalie) was pulled.

2nd period- History was made in Tampa Bay for Defenseman Mike Green. Mike Green broke the record for consecutive goals in a game for a defensemen with 8. It came on a powerplay about 6 minutes into the period. On the powerplay Green took a shot that was blocked by a lightning, then when the puck hit the ground, Green nailed it into the net. This has to go down as the highlight of the period. The lowlight is knowing somewhere in Bristol, Barry Melrose is laughing. The lightning also got on the board this period, but at this point it doesn't matter.

3rd period- Even though the game was over the Lightning showed no heart in this period and overall lacked any sense of pride. Through the first 10 minutes of the period the lightning had 0 shots on goal. That is right ZERO. The caps were able to add one more goal to win the game 5-1.

History was made, and the Caps look dominant, they'll need to show up tomorrow against the Panthers to extend there Southeast conference lead.

-James Herring

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