The Rats Aren’t The Only Surprising Thing In NYC

Well Caps fans all things come to an end at some point. Your Caps went unbeaten in regulation for the first 9 games of the season, but now have lost two games in a row now. The latest L comes at the hands of those rats in the big apple by the score of 4-2. It was a tough fought game, but it was clear the Caps played down to their competition, but props to the Rags for putting up a fight.

The Caps were able to put together at least one good period and that came in the 2nd, and in the NHL you can’t win games playing only one good period.

On Thursday night the Caps also went with 7 defensemen and 11 forwards which the Caps usually don’t do. In my opinion this leaves an odd-man out on D which messes with the rhythm and routine on the back end, but its still early in the season so Laviolette is trying things out to see what works and doesn’t work that’s how any good coach should run a team so I won’t fault him for that.

It was nice to see Carl Hagelin get on the board against his former team, especially since he has been extremely off as of late so I am really hoping this gives him a little spark going forward to give our offense a boost while Kuzy is still out.

I can’t continue without mentioning that I think we have found our number one guy between the pipes. When there’s opportunity you either take it or let it pass you, and Vitek Vanecek has clearly grabbed this starting position tightly with the absence of Samsonov. Vitek has played amazing since the Sammy Covid situation and has earned the right to be the Caps number 1 guy right now especially after being named the NHL Rookie of the Month after providing the Caps with 5 wins in the month of January.

This gongshow occurred when Brendan “The Rat” Lemieux chose to skate through Vitek Vanecek’s crease right before the final buzzer. Vitek extended his arms to hit Lemieux for entering his crease which why the hell was he even near him with a two goal lead and the game about to end. Absolute swamp rat move by Lemieux.

It was great to see Dilly have our goalies back by choosing violence and responding to Lemieux’s actions.

Even when the Caps lose they seem to find a way to have a positive thing happen and that positive thing came at the hands of our fearless leader Alex Ovechkin. Ovi is obviously one of the best goal scorers of our generation and maybe even of all-time sorry 99.

Ovi notched his 709th career goal Thursday night, this goal took him past Mike Gartner for sole possession of 7th on the all-time goal scoring list in NHL history. Next for the Great 8 is Phil Espositio at 717 career goals. Fingers crossed Ovi catches fire here and goes on a little goal scoring streak.

Prediction: Ovi Passes Gretzky in the 2026-27 season at the age of 40 the week of January 5th! BOOK IT

I can’t go without saying how important Nicklas Backstrom has been for the Caps this season. I know Backy isn’t considered underrated because he is so consistent but I would say he flies under the radar at times because he makes everything look so easy. Backy now has 14 points in 11 games with that primary assist on Alex’s goal.

Next for the Caps is a Sunday afternoon matinee against those Philly guys to try and break this losing streak

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