Horse Hockey

The Caps played their best game of the series, but in the end it didn’t matter. They overcame, but could not overcome everything.

The Caps overcame a Philadelphia goal in the first minute of the game. The Caps overcame a stretch of 5:16 in consecutive shorthanded time in the first period, a span that included 44 seconds during which they were two men short.

The Caps weathered an uncalled, blood-drawing high-stick from Braydon Coburn on Matt Bradley (ah, but we were told that one of the brilliant and impartial Philly TV guys termed it a “flop” on Bradley’s part), an event that was followed almost immediately by Caps defenseman Milan Jurcina being sent to the box for cross-checking on a play that most impartial observers we polled saw as a clean hit (save for the one(s) that counted, natch).

The Caps weathered a pair of uncalled high-sticks to the face of Alexander Semin, one from the blade of Joffrey Lupul and the other from Jim Dowd. Dowd’s certainly looked intentional and looked like intent to injure, as well.

The Caps overcame one call for too many men on the ice, but were unable to weather a second one; Danny Briere’s power play goal tied the game at 3-3 in the third.

The Caps overcame a late third period goaltender interference penalty on Viktor Kozlov, who was taken down (A: hooked, B: tripped, C: checked, D: both A&B) en route to the net on a semi-breakaway; the contact caused him to have resultant contact with Flyers goaltender Martin Biron.

The Caps were unable to overcome Mike Knuble’s overtime game-winner. Watch the replay and you’ll see Knuble take a stick swing at Caps goaltender Cristobal Huet just seconds before he potted the game-winner.

Kozlov: goaltender interference. Knuble: not so much.

Ultimately, the Caps failed to cash in on some scoring chances. They made some coverage mistakes, failed to clear their zone more than a few times and gave up some goals as a result. They lost the hockey game and now trail 3-1 in the series.

That’s life, and that’s hockey. Mistakes happen. Players make them. Coaches make them. Guys on TV make them. Guys who pick the three stars make them. After the game, the Caps and their coach gamely stood in front of cameras and microphones and talked about their mistakes and accepted responsibility for them.

Officials make mistakes, too. The difference is, the next time you see them standing in front of a camera or a microphone to explain or accept responsibility for any of them, well … that will be the first time.

I talked to a handful of media types from both sides of the press box and some others who are impartial during the intermissions of Thursday night’s game in Philly. Not a single one of them believed Jurcina or Kozlov should have been penalized. Not a single one of them believed that Coburn, Lupul, and Dowd should not have been penalized. That’s five bad calls, five missed calls (one of which should have been a double minor, and another which could have been a major) in a tight game and a tight series, all going against the same team.

Them’s the breaks.

I wonder what it’s like to be an NHL referee. What’s it like to see a guy standing on the bench bleeding from a call that you missed, a call that might have changed the course of a game? Does an official ever watch a replay of one of his crosschecking calls or goalie interference calls and say to himself, “Whoops, missed that one, it was clean.” Does he ever see an elbowing infraction or an interference call he missed and say, “Whoops, should have called that one.” 

We’ll never know. The NHL officials are above reproach. The league mandates that coaches and players be made available to the media, that reporters are given access to locker rooms. Coaches explain their thinking with regards to personnel and strategy, and players talk about what they saw and/or thought on this play and that play.

It’s good. It helps fans understand how and why things happen. It makes them better fans and gives them a better appreciation for the game. But we’re not allowed to understand why one bump on a goaltender is a penalty, and another is not. We’re not privy to what a referee was looking at while a player’s face was being sliced open with a stick blade.

Or what he was looking at the next time it happened.

Or the time after that.

The Philly choir boys were a bit incorrigible at the start of the game, but they really played nice for the final 73:54 of the game. (I wonder how many times the Flyers went 73:54 with just one minor penalty called against them during the regular season.) The Flyers were called for one delay of game penalty during that span, when Coburn was deemed to have knocked the net from its moorings deliberately.

Probably it was an accident. Too bad the official can’t take that one back.

Some who happen upon this post will say it’s sour grapes. I respect your right to believe that. Regular readers of this space and regular listeners to the frequent (more than 100 a year) podcasts I host on know that I normally go out of my way not to discuss, blame, criticize or otherwise include officiating (especially specific calls) in the analysis of games and their outcomes. (Though I have occasionally noted lately that it’s hard to say what is and isn’t a penalty any more, watching several games around the league every night. This is a sentiment that is echoed by many of those within the game with whom I have regular contact and discussions, including some current and former players.)

Tonight, I was not able to overcome the urge to keep quiet. Sorry.



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211 Comments on “Horse Hockey”

  1. anthony Says:


    its ok im there with you. its nice to see what the caps did do last game, as so many things were done correctly. I loved that scrum in the beginning and that backis scored. Semin got a lot of respect from me last night, and Im sure others too.

    I think or hope that the caps have excised their demons, heres hoping they can come back again.

  2. Ben from Washington Says:

    Caps got some bad breaks, yes, but everything balances out over the course of the series. None of the calls or non-calls led directly to goals, so it’s a wash in the end.

  3. matt Says:

    Not much too add to your spot on post. I was hoping the everyone called them out took the fines and forced the NHL into a public statement on the matter. I’m guessing that didn’t happen.

    It’s a long road now. Let’s take game 5 and go from there – if last night proved anything its that the Caps can and did play much better. Let’s see it again boys. Good things will happen.

  4. Disgruntled Hockey Fan Says:

    I completely agree with you Mike. I am not one to generaly complain about officiating, but, I think there needs to be some accountability for these guys when they miss that many calls. Knubbles slashing/interference right before he scored the game winner really takes the cake. If they call interference on Kozlov after he got hooked and pushed into Biron, how do they not call Knubble for whacking Huet?

    I think the NHL is really starting to come back around from the lockout. More people are watching games across the continent. I think the overly bad officiating during the playoffs so far might put a hurting on that. Oh well, I am just rambling on here now. Mike, I love the blog and all the write-ups you do at Keep up the good work. Winning 3 in a row wont be easy, but, they have done it before. *HONK* *HONK* HONK* LETS GO CAPS!!!!

  5. Mike Says:


    Great post! I agree with you on every aspect of it, and I do not believe it is sour grapes at all. I just wish the fans had an official site where they could voice their opinion over the quality of the officiating, and looking at the replays on versus, it wasn’t just in the Caps game, but also in the Dallas/Anaheim game, with that fictional goaltender interference in the first period against the Stars.

    I don’t know what the NHL does with regard to their review process of the refs, it would be nice to know that. In the end, though, it’s still 1-3 Caps. Let’s Go Caps!!!!!



  6. Scai Says:

    The Caps got jobbed by the refs. There can be no doubt about that. With the Kozlov penalty it looked almost methodical. Thanks Mike, for making that point. Someone needed to speak up.

  7. Right on the money, Mike. The Caps definitely got Earl Hebner’d this game. Still, they had the better of the chances in the first overtime (Fedorov, Poti in particular), but such is Caps Playoff Hockey.

  8. ADR Says:

    Amen, brother. I completely agree with your entire post. Hopefully, this team has turned a corner. As we all know, 3-1 leads are not entirely secure…

  9. Capnut Says:

    That’s OK Mike. Let it out.

    When I learned that Hasenfratz was one of the referees, I knew that we would be playing shorthanded more than not. He is, without a doubt, THE worst that the NHL has to offer. He should have started his summer vacation on April 6. How the League “rewards” someone like that with playoff premium is beyond me. They must be desperate.

    Despite Hasenfratz and being down 1-3, there is still a part of me that thinks this series can see a 7th game.

    Last night was a maturation game. They finally played a good playoff game. They showed they were willing to pay a price.

    And, although I don’t want this season to end, whenever it does I can go into the summer with great anticipation for years to come. This team is just beginning a long run of playoffs for many years to come. And, I firmly believe a Cup will come to DC, atleast once, during the “contract” (OV’s 13 years).

    There are just a couple things that make me wonder what this season could have been like. What if we had a healthy Nylander, Clark and Pothier? They might have provided the playoff experience needed to compliment Federov. And, what if we waited 1 more week to replace Hanlon? Chances are we would not have gotten into the “Show”. Thank God for Bruce!

    This team will grow from this experience. Sometimes it takes losing to become a great winner.

    No matter what…the season and the organization gets an A+.

  10. OrderedChaos Says:

    After last night, I finally understand why referees wear orange & black — Philly had “too many men on the ice” all night. If the league has any self-respect, they’ll reprimand the officials for the high-sticking non-calls, along with the unfathomable decision to call goaltender intereference on Kozlov at the end of the 3rd.

    The Caps played extremely well, but not enough to overcome a tough Philly squad aided by terrible officiating. But the boys will be fired up on Saturday and show the Flyers (and the refs) they ain’t done yet.

  11. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Well, you got one thing right. Sour Grapes. Enjoy the summer.

  12. Empty Maybe Says:

    Brian Propp picked the three stars by himself? Are there guidelines for stuff like that? Having an ex-Philadelphia player who is now a broadcaster for the team seems like it may end up with some biased picks (like, say, last night).

    Hasenfratz was a disgrace. I will be keeping my eyes open to see if he officiates any more playoff games.

    All that said, if the Caps played games 2 and 3 like the way they played last night, they wouldn’t be down 3 – 1. It’s just too bad that the officials were such a factor in last night’s contest.

  13. Capnut Says:

    Philly fans need not post!

    Hey, what happened to the “orange crush” last night? Didn’t see nearly as much orange as was there for Game 3. That’s OK. You all looked like a bunch of pumpkins in a pumpkin patch. Not very intimidating.
    By the way, loved the way you were booing your team early in the game. That’s typical, classless behavior.

  14. TG Says:

    A co-worker of mine (a Rangers fan, so he has no dog in this hunt) said, “That call against Kozlov was the single worst hockey officiating call I’ve ever seen in my life.”

    Unfortunately, the Caps weren’t able to make the officials a non-factor.

    And does anyone else miss Kerry Fraser? I know he caught the ire of the fans, but at least he was consistent in his calls (and his non-calls). Going into a game with him as a ref, I knew I’d always get mad at a couple non-calls of his, but at least he’d make the same non-calls the other way.

  15. JOHN Says:


  16. jason Says:

    i played hockey for years, and i know one thing…even though they suck, you cant blame the refs. they were disgraceful with the wrong calls and the non-calls, but in the end we couldnt seal the deal in OT. 2 games now were taken by officiating in one way, but on the other hand we dont know how the games would have went and we cant say we would have won for sure w/o the refs. despite my conviction they you cant really blame the refs even though they usually deserve it i cant ignore that last game was the worst officiating ive even seen, and they took our chance to win out from under us.

  17. jason Says:

    john what the hell are you even doing at 9 am on a caps site, go meet a girl

  18. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Stop crying about the officiating. It only serves to make you bitter and as big a loser as your team. Take it from a hard-core Flyers fan who use to drive down to Landover for front row seats to watch the Flyers kick ass year after year. Complaining about the officiating is self destructive. The sooner you and your team understands that, the better off they will be. Anyone with a fair knowledge of hockey would agree that the majority of the “questionable” calls in the first 3 games were to the Caps advantage, but you didn’t hear the Flyers or their fans crying like this…

  19. Joe Says:

    Hey Capnut, I see you are as clueless as your guys’ writer, Mike Vogel is. The BOOs were for the official and their calls, not for the team or Derian Hatcher. bwahaha.

    Mike Vogel has his head so far up the Caps ass, the fumes of stink are saturating his head with this stupid shit.


    Your guys’ only player, Ovechkin, does a triple-axle dive in game 3, penalty called. Seriously, if he’s so good and loves the game, why does he have to dive?

    Kozlov makes a play towards the net late in game 4, MAKES NO ATTEMPT TO GET OUT OF THE WAY, AND CRASHED INTO THE GOALIE. After we have gotten penalties for doing the same, why the hell are you crying cause you got one called your way?

    Alexander Semin high-sticked Richards when Richards checked him in the third period. Why didn’t Mike Vogel include that in his “non-call” list???

    You bitterness and longing for making up excuses for your piss poor play is a combination of you guys being sore losers because we actually play solid defense on your only scorer and the realization that you guys just aren’t a playoff team. Face it, your depth is no where near the Flyers, and coming to terms with it has resulted in your frustration and complaining for “non-calls”. Vogel, fans and everyone else, YOU GUYS GOT ALL THE CALLS IN GAME 3, YET YOU STILL LOST. Take it home and chew it, it’s delicious.

  20. jason Says:

    all of you philly fans are so cool…you can come type on another team’s board and type anonymously. i just hope your team doesnt give us a reason to start talking on yours. this series isnt over until one team has 4. last time i checked caps play their best hockey in this type of situation, we won 8 straight and 12 of the last 13…there is still hockey to be played.

  21. jason Says:

    C.A.P.S. caps! caps! caps!

  22. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Right on Joe. Bottom line, through 4 games, Caps have 2 more penalties than the Flyers and that number should be much higher.

    Let me also touch on the lack of class the Caps have…

    Perhaps if they didn’t celbrate every goal like they just won the Stanley Cup, Flyers fans would have more respect for them. Instead, when you see a team do a pile on at center ice for a tying goal, it only fuels our disdain.

    Caps suck… One trick pony… Get over it

  23. jason Says:

    no city has fans with less class than philly. booing your teams, fighting other fans, stirring up shit on our site….philly is THE WHITE TRASH CAPITOL OF THE NORTH!!!!!

    get a life

  24. Joe Says:

    Actually, the only reason I posted here was because of Mike Vogel’s stupid ass comments. Seriously, my monitor is wet because he’s crying so much.

    I’ve had nothing but respect for Bruce Boudreau; he seems likea very good coach and one of the biggest signs is giving credit where credit is due. Which both him and Stevens have done in the series.

    But when your “Senior Writer” leaks the sand out about missed calls, thats just too far. Where was he when Ovechkin dived? Or when Laich high-sticked the puck into the net? Where was his bitching about officiating there?


    The Flyers are the only team in the NHL that during intermissions of their games, the NHL officiating crew goes into the Refs locker room and tells them they have to make MORE calls on the Flyers.

    Oh, and I am willing to bet that if you guys had won last night, we wouldn’t hear shit about the officiating. So yeah, look for something to blame on why you guys lost. Your best game of the series and you still came up short. Oh yea, must be the refs fault.


  25. Joe Says:


    Stop listening to Vogel, morons. He’s fucking retarded.


    I know you guys have never really had a good hockey team, but this is common hockey knowlegde.

  26. Right Winger Says:

    “Take it from a hard-core Flyers fan who use to drive down to Landover for front row seats to watch the Flyers kick ass year after year.”

    Umm, except for that one game back in ’88. I think it was Game 7, where Hunter scored in OT to bring the Caps back from a 3-1 series deficit. Of course, as a Flyers fan, you probably don’t want to remember that. Or blowing that 3-1 series lead back in 2000…

    Vogs is spot-on here–there’s a double-standard in this series when it comes to goaltender interference. Laich’s GI call in Game 3 was about as bogus as they come, only rivaled by Kozlov’s last night. Any time two guys leave the ice with blood streaming from their faces, that’s a clear sign that the refs might have missed something.

    The NHL has to take a look at the officiating in this series and get the refs to be consistent–either call everything or nothing at all. I still believe the Caps can reel off 3 straight to win this series–after all, we did win 7 in a row just to get in to the playoffs. Elimination games are nothing new for this team–if they play like they did in Game 4, and the refs start making legitimate calls, they’ll win Game 5.

  27. Joe Says:

    And again, the only reason you are bitching about it now is because you were so close but came up so short. Quit crying about intangibles. Get the hell over it

  28. Mana Says:

    For those of you who haven’t read the Washington Post article, let me write out some excepts from “Beaten to the Punch” by Mike Wise from April 16th.

    “Did we mention they (at Wachovia Center) show fights on the video scoreboard every period here, more than most arenas show dunks in the NBA?”

    “The Caps’ postseason slogan: “Rock The Red.” The Flyers? “Vengeance Now,” which comes across as less of a slogan and more of a sequel to Charles Bronson’s “Death Wish.”

    “The fans wore orange instead of the Capitals’ red, and many of the women and children looked as if they could work security for Megadeth.”

    “They flat-out market and sell violence here (Philly), sanctioned, unbridled assaults disguised as sport.”

    Yeah, who has class now?

    Oh and also, we read the newspaper.

  29. […] read Mike Vogel’s commendably restrained litany of lousy officiating, but I’m glad that as grieviously bad as it’s been at times — and referee Mike […]

  30. dave Says:


    Terrific column, I think even if Flyers fans read this, they won’t be able to disagree with your main point-we truly don’t know what’s a penalty and what’s not anymore, especially with goalie interference. Refs miss so many calls, including soem last night that should have gone against the Caps. The flyers are up 3-1 in this series, but if they were complaining about the refs, I wouldn’t necessarily blame them.

  31. Mike L Says:

    First of all Mike, do not *ever* apologize or explain for what you write here. It’s your blog, write whatever you want. Period.

    That said I agree with you that the refs missed a whole lot, but the missed a bunch going each way. They did miss the highstick against Semin, and they really blew the Kozlov call. But they also missed a penalty on Brashear when he leveled Sami Kapanen who didn’t have the puck (it could have been called boarding, interference, or charging as he left his feet). The Caps got away with a bunch of other things as well.

    As for refs commenting on their mistakes… there were some refs who did comment on their missed calls or bad calls. Bruce Hood, Art Skov and Andy Van Hellemond would admit it to the media if they blew a call that was costly during a game. Terry Gregson did so as well (although he was probably the best referee I’ve seen in my lifetime, he didn’t miss many). Additionally, Paul Stewart (as bad a ref as he was) would admit when he blew a call, which was often, so the NHL had to let him go. And then, unofficially (get it?) they told the refs to not talk to the media ever again. Personally I think this is a bad idea as some of the refs actually have interesting personalities (Kerry Frasier, Don Koharski, Don Van Massenhoven who is usually a good ref, but not last night).

    It’s not the officiating, it’s the desire, and while the Caps wanted it a lot last night, Philly wanted it more and got it. The Caps need get to get back the fire they had in the last 2-3 weeks of the season and play the next 9 periods like it was the 3rd period in Atlanta back on March 21. They do that, and all three games will go into the win column. Admittedly, the Flyers are better than the Thrashers, but I think they can do it.

  32. Ben Says:

    Philly fans: Mike Vogel is a classy and intelligent hockey writer. You are morons with a keyboard.

    If you think that blood-drawing slashes to the face (twice) and inconsistent goalie interference calls constitute a fair game, there is only one city you can be from.

  33. tj Says:

    Great post, Mike, great post… Thank you.

  34. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    As this series wears on, it bcomes more apparent that the Flyers have more scoring prowess and depth even up. 18% of the Flyers goals in this series have been power play goals where 36% of the Caps goals have been on the power play. This is the real reason why the Caps fans are screaming and crying for more calls against the Flyers. It is there only chance. Unless the refs agree, this will be there last day to bitch and complain.

  35. gusty161 Says:

    Great column Mike, as usual. The fact that these Philly losers are complaing so loudly is that the truth hurts. More to the point, refs, like players, can be intimidated. And last night the refs were clearly afraid of the Philly crowd. The stats don’t lie, the Flyers are the most penalized team in the league, the Caps are the second least. Yet somehow, the Flyers managed to commit only four penalties last night including just one in the second. Yet the Caps were called for seven including two in the third. Even the mentally-challenged Flyer fans know what’s going on. But the beauty is that the next game is in our building. Let’s see if Joe and Philly Voice of Reason are back here on Sunday.

  36. billy Says:

    Hear, hear!

    You really nailed this one, Mike. Good work.


  37. Philly Voice of the Unemployed Says:

    I have nothing better to do than lurk the internet from my parents’ basement on a Friday morning!

  38. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    No complaining here… I love what I see… In fact, I’m so elated, I had to come to this blog to hear your bitching and moaning to bring me down from the dangerous high I was on from last nights ot win.

    Caps have 2 certified scoring threats and now their on the same line. Thanks for making this so easy! Go polish your golf clubs. You’ll be using them next week while the Flyers are preparing for Montreal.

  39. Adam Says:

    Excellent article, those refs were about as bad as the refs when i used to play in high school, and i don’t know about elsewhere, but around me, its grotesque.
    Philly fans, your right, the refs absolutely cannot take the blame for the outcome, but please mature a little bit, anyone that is capable of taking an even semi nuetral look at the officiating will admit that the refs called an extremely poor game.
    I’m sitting here debating going through the philly fans comments and pointing out discrepincies but unfortunately i have a life and dont have time to sit on this website all day. All i can say is, grow up, go on your team’s website and bask in your false glory with your other fans, i promise not to sink low enough to visit your site and try and badmouth you all.
    The caps finally played a much better game last night and Huet was really on his, i have very strong confidence in this following through when we come home. The series is 3-1, an unfortunately for philly that doesnt take the series, i think this scares them. Especially the fans low enough to come on our website to badmouth us. I mean why in the hell would you even want to visit another teams page, i sure as hell wouldnt wanna go on a philly site, but that just might be fear of having to see briere’s ugly ass, he looks like he’s addicted to somethin terrible.
    The caps are going to take game 5….and 6…..and 7, and even if they don’t, we’ll see how philly lines up with us next year, my bet is they’ll be crying.

    Rock on Capitals

  40. Go Flyboys Says:

    Yeah OK…what about Alex the great doing a triple lindy and drawing a penalty and the gift a goal deflected in by a high stick. You’re right. The officials haven’t been too good but the majority of the bad calls have gone in Caps favor, not the other way around.

  41. Ben Says:

    No one is saying the Flyers aren’t good, or don’t deserve to win. But that game was highway robbery, 100% plain and simple, by the refs.

    Caps are still raw and it’s not their year. But at least make it fair. We’re talking about 8 minutes of power play that weren’t called, plus the Kovlov penalty was a PENALTY ON THE FLYERS. That’s a 4 minute swing. 12 minutes, over half a period, of 5 on 4 hockey the refs saved you from.

  42. jason Says:

    all you philly fans are classless idiots. THIS IS A BLOG not an article. the author here speaks his mind. and article on the other hand, is meant to be impartial, which mike’s always are.

    it is no secret that phily and violence in sports go hand in hand. why is it that if you wear an eagles jersey in washington you will walk out after the game but if you dare wear a skins jersey in phily you will be carried on a stretcher. and the worst part is phily fans are proud of this. “hey im so white trash that i cant fathom the idea of a fan of another team, lets fight him.” sportsmanship goes beyond the players and your fans are a disgrace.

    silly me, i should know that “fathom” is way beyond a phily fan’s vocabulary level

    another thing, can we stop crying about this game? its over, the refs suck, but it was on both ends. we lost, we can win 3, we probably wont…. but this was GREAT season and we have a bright future.

  43. Ben Says:

    I can’t believe people think that was a dive. That was a blatant trip by Knuble and Ovie was hurt on the play. He didn’t porhouette to draw a penalty, he did it because his knee was about 2 inches from being blown out. Flyers aren’t “tough”, they are glorified cheap shot artists who will get what is coming to them.

  44. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Gee, maybe to make things even, the Flyers shoud skate 4 against 5 tomorrow…

    F off.

  45. Stooooo Says:

    As a Flyers fan if there is anyone who can understand your frustration about the lack of calls going your way it is us. Remember we spent the early part of the year on “double secret porbation”. I think the thing that is deciding this series is the Flyers depth and the Capitals lack of it.

    You guy talk about how hot the Capitals were coming down the stretch. Look who you were playing against, the horrible Southeast Division. You must have forgotten that the Flyers went 5-1-1 down the stretch as well. Oh and by the way if you had not won the SE you wouldn’t even be in the playoffs, nor the 3rd seed. The Flyers played the best teams in the East coming down the stretch and won!

    The Flyers had 7 20 goal scorers. You have Ovi, who is a great player I will not deny that. The Flyers are just playing him smart and taking away his space and not allowing his linemates to pass him the puck. Stop the whining and crying! Sure they miss calls, but they miss them on both ends. I guess that high stick to Richards face wasn’t a penalty either.

  46. FlyeredUP Says:

    Please don’t disgrace yourselves and this great sport by crying about the officials. Last night the calls did go our way and most of the section I was in thought the goal tender interference call was going the other way as a hook. It’s about time calls started to swing in the FLYERS favor. the first three games seemed as if the league wanted to just hand ovechkin the cup. The kid is great but he’ll have to earn it and so far he’s been frustrated by team defense he’s definately shown he has a future in the ice capades if this hockey thing doesn’t work out.

    oh, by the way….I’m on this site looking for tickets

    and….the guy talking about class……..go to the ballet THIS IS PLAYOFF HOCKEY

  47. Ben Says:

    No, to make things even the Caps will slash Briere in the face and draw blood twice, stomp and slash Biron multiple times, and then go on the PP when Huet is grazed, oh and nearly blow out Richards’ knee and accuse him of diving while he is wincing in pain on the ice.

  48. Andy Says:

    Stooo actually, had we not won the southeast, we would have ousted Ottawa or Boston via tiebreakers.

    No one is denying that Philly has a talented lineup. Quite honestly, my only expectations for the Caps were to get in the playoffs this year. Beyond that, anything was a bonus. They’ll learn, continue to develop, and continue to get better. This series will benefit them as far as long-term development is concerned. I wouldn’t argue that the Caps do not have depth – I’d more make a case for their inexperience. Many have been effectively kept quiet by the Flyers this series.

    If you want to talk about a big difference between the two clubs, lets discuss defense…

  49. Steven Says:

    I agree completely with your assessment of the no calls. You even saw a couple I didn’t. But this isn’t the first time this series that I have complained about the non-calls. This time was different because our kids were injured repeatedly.

    We got away with more than just a bench minor though. We high sticked a guy in the third that was not called. But heh, the game has rules and they should be followed regardless of the time of year. I hope the caps come back and win, but I am too disgusted to watch anymore. Last night was the last game of hockey I am watching this season.

    See y’all next year. Go Caps!

  50. TJ Says:

    Were you watching the same game as me, but with rose colored glasses for the Caps.
    While you complain about missed calls on the Flyers, did you miss all the late hits and hands to the face that were done by the Caps. Also, in game 3, Ovetchkin should have gotten an Academy Award for his spectacular dive.
    Come on, be fair and see the missed calls on both sides.
    Only losers complain about the refs.

  51. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Mike Vogel is an ass hat. Why is there no mention of the non-calls or bad calls against the Flyers on his blog?

    I describe this reaction as the cycle of losers… Prior to last night, Caps fans were certain that the Caps would turn this series around and win it. Now they know the end is near and to sleep better, they will blame the refs. At least you have the Nats to route for now. Too bad they’re in the same division as the Phils.

  52. Philly Voice of Reason's Mother Says:

    Sweetie, lunch is ready. Time to get off the computer and make your bed.

    P.S. Any chance you’ll be moving out soon?

  53. Joe B Says:

    I do have to admit, this is the first time I’ve read this site, however, I did peruse your articles since the series started and noticed no mention of the officials in games 1 through 3, you know, when Ovenchkin was getting away with errant elbows and the Flyers were getting very few breaks (save the penalty shot in game 3, which was definitely a questionable call–pentalty, sure, ps, probably not).
    Did the Flyers get the breaks in game 4? Absolutely. But this stuff evens out: The incredibly dubious flop by the MVP in game 3 comes to mind (when he faked injury). That’s the way it goes. I do agree 100 percent, however, that officials should be required to face the media. They are professionals too.

  54. Andy Says:

    You’re spot on. The officiating was horrendous. Just unforgivable. I sound whiny putting this on here, but you know what? Those referees get paid the big bucks to make the right calls. This is their career, chosen profession, they’e professionals and supposedly the best in the world, and supposedly impartial. If you’re calling cheapies all night, call em on both teams. If you’re letting stuff go, let it go for both teams. The referees had a double standard last night and it was blatantly obvious.
    What use is a two-referee system if no penalties get called? Is it only so there can be more chefs ruining the broth, or is it so McCreary can knock down our defensemen? The NHL needs to take a long look at this game tape and fire a couple orange-armbanded men, because I know if I failed that miserably at my job, I’d get canned, too.

  55. Jordan Says:

    Hi Mike,

    Thanks for writing this. It needed to be said by someone other than us Caps fans.

    With that said, I wish one of our city’s print-media journalists would have written it instead.

  56. jason Says:

    ok first off, laich’s goal did hit his stick, but IT WAS BELOW THE CROSSBAR and it went on to hit biron’s glove

    second, ovi didnt dive

    third FUCK YOU FLYERDUP how’s that for class. just because we dont fight every person in an opposing jersey you think we want to go to the ballet. you have a white trash city that only knows how to support their teams thru violence and asinine behavior, again i apologize for using a vocab way above the typical phily fan.

  57. Kyle Says:

    “jason Says:
    April 18, 2008 at 9:40 am

    no city has fans with less class than philly. booing your teams, fighting other fans, stirring up shit on our site….philly is THE WHITE TRASH CAPITOL OF THE NORTH!!!!!

    get a life”

    —This guy is a “Capitals” fan and he spelled “Capital” wrong. That’s funny.—

  58. Phily Voice of Reason Says:

    I AM GAY

  59. Phily Voice of Reason Says:

    you are such an idiot kyle CAPITOL IS CORRECT SPELLING

    as in our nations capitol, and we cheer for the capitals

  60. FlyeredUP Says:

    please re read your last two posts. You sound like you want blood. Knuble and Ovechkin’s toes barely grazed. his knee was in no danger Ovie as you call him has the balance of a cat. Knuble didn’t even see him as his head was turned. Call it what it is. A SWAN DIVE. I gave it a nine. would’ve been a ten if he stuck the landing. But who cares he drew a penalty for his team and i don’t blame him for trying. I was just a little disappointed in him. I think he is a great hockey player and shouldn’t need to do that. Leave that for Crosby!

  61. Kyle Says:

    “Phily Voice of Reason Says:
    April 18, 2008 at 11:21 am

    you are such an idiot kyle CAPITOL IS CORRECT SPELLING

    as in our nations capitol, and we cheer for the capitals”

    –No, actually. You’re an idiot. A “capitol” is a building. A “capital” is an area of a country or state enjoying primary status. Moron.—

  62. Danny Says:

    I agree 100% – the officiating was miserable. But we could have overcome that if the team weren’t so rattled in their own end at key times. They could have overcome the non-calls and phantom calls if they had clean line changes. But like you wrote the other day: it’s the little things. And taken all together – they amount to big things. The series isn’t over – and for once they played playoff hockey. But it is awfully hard to be optimistic at this point.

  63. oo7 Says:

    The refs sucked, plain and simple. McPhee should be on the phone with Campbell today tearing him a new -hole. unacceptable at this level of sports. it looked like all the refs worked for Tocchet.

  64. dumpnchase Says:

    Hey, the Caps lost and the Caps really have no one to blame but themselves for losing. Nowhere did I blame the officials anyway. If they cash in a chance or two, the outcome is different. That’s not the point. And I would have written something like this if four or five or six wrong/missed calls had gone against Philly in a game in which that many missed called did not go against the Caps. I just like seeing the game decided by the players, I guess I’m funny that way.

    I understand calls are going to be missed. Happens all the time. There is a human element in every aspect of the game, and there should be. My problem is the high-and-mightiness of the officiating and those responsible for the officiating. It’s been a fun series to watch, with a lot of really great and really competitive players on both sides. Hopefully, it continues in that fashion.

  65. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    It’s Philly, not Phily. Oh, that’s right, the blog software won’t let you mimic my name 100%.

    This is why we kick your ass when you come up here wearing your jerseys. It’s because you’re annoying.

    Fuck off, moron.

  66. Jason Says:

    good call kyle, good to see there is an intelligent person in phily

  67. Jason Says:

    i dont think anyone on this page could give 2 shits how you spell phily.

  68. Jason Says:

    oh no, i mispelled phily again

  69. FlyeredUP Says:


    I was in section117 last night. behind me were two Caps fans – we talked Hockey. three rows down were a husband and wife wearing Caps jersey’s – we had fun together as hockey fans. they gave it to us when the caps went ahead and we gave it back when we tied it. (I couldn’t find them after Knuble won it ). there was no fowl language or fights.

    Hey jason speaking of “trash cities” …does the Mayor of DC still do CRACK or are they into heroin down there now…uh..which is it Jason.

  70. Ben Says:

    @ FlyeredUP: I was responding to Philly Voice of Treason’s comment that “we’ll play 4 on 5 next game that’ll be fair” by pointing out what the Phlyers got away with last game.

    Before I let my blood boil any more than it has, I will leave it at this: the Flyers deserve to win this series at this point. The Caps lucked out with some Green/Ovechkin magic in Game 1 and only actually showed up in Game 4. We’re still young and raw (too many men on the ice twice? terrible) and need some help on the blueline.

    But if the small glimmer of hope that remains in this series is washed away, I am optimistic for the future.

  71. Jason Says:

    oh no i mispelled mispeld!!!! grammar police are coming from phily i better go into hiding, or maybe to class. sorry id love to stay and bicker all day

  72. Kyle Says:

    To the 1 “L” Phily Voice of reason—-It’s okay if you don’t post anymore. I understand that you are embarrassed. I’m smarter than you. I think it’s a real testament to your character that you are able to use the computer, being as dumb as you are.

  73. Let's Have A Spelling Bee Says:

    The only thing more humorous than last night’s officiating is Philly Voice of Reason’s spelling this morning.

    Game 4 lasted only one day. An education lasts a lifetime.

    Enjoy your one day Philly.

  74. Caps fan in TN Says:

    Ovechkin doesn’t dive. He doesn’t need to.

  75. Jason Says:

    i think the mayor just smokes good pot now

  76. Jason Says:

    i think the mayor just smokes good pot now, flyerdup

  77. Adam Says:

    Philly fans, all i am hearing from all of you is bitching about ovechkin “diving,” regardless of it being a dive or not (i say nay), get the fuck over it. Theres been terrible officiating throughout the NHL in these playoffs, terrible calls on both the caps and flyers, but get off your pedastool last nights contest was absolutely in your favor.
    Caps fans, unfortunatly regardless of how right/wrong we may be and wrong/right the philly fans are, they wont stop. A philly player could stop on a downed player’s arm and their fans would think it the cleanest hockey there can be. Why? Because when your trash everything else looks terribly clean. They will continue being ignorant regardless of what happens or is said, thats the plain truth.

  78. Jason Says:

    oh no!!! i accidently double posted…hurry phily fans i need reprimanding.

  79. Jason Says:

    adam you just said the most truthful statement i’ve ever read

  80. abbey Says:

    Bad calls go both ways. Good teams overcome them.

    If you want to find blame look at your players. Ovechkin was supposed to be on Knuble on the 2nd OT, but apparently he is above defense? Huet has looked soft almost the whole playoffs. The Flyers thoroughly outplayed the Caps until yesterday. The Caps couldn’t close the door.

    Bad calls have went both ways. It seems you are implying the refs are crooked? Rewatch the games and tell me that the Caps were screwed by the refs more then the Flyers.

    Oh yeah, you write for the Caps, so asking for objectivity is too much.

    Also, the Philadelphia play-by-play guy took back his comment about the flop almost immediately. You failed to mention that though.


  81. CAPS FAN Says:

    The main point of having officials is to ensure that the game gets played in a fair, safe environment, which does NOT include two of our guys coming off the ice with blood gushing from their faces. As for the Koslov penalty, if you watched the replay he was blatantly turning his skates away from Biron/the goal, about to avoid contact all together until the PHilly defenseman barrelled into him. As a former goalie I’m all for officials protecting those boys (yes, even Biron), and I think they need to start doing more of it. But the Koslov call was one of the worst calls for interference I have ever seen. Sometimes people run into eachother, such is the nature of hockey.

    Regardless, it was nice to finally see our boys settling down last night and playing CAPS hockey the way we know they can play. While I”m obviously not happy with the outcome, I can sleep at night knowing we played the way we know how to (as opposed to the first 3 games). Too bad it took them 4 games, that will probably cost us the series. But hell, for a team that started 6-14 and with 14 playoff rookies, I’m pretty damn happy with a playoff run that goes on past the first 4 games. You boys have a lot to be proud of, and I see big things for our future!

    And Philly fans? You’re up in the series 3-1….that you have nothing better to do than gloat and trashtalk on the opposing team’s blog says a lot about your lack of class. Get a life.

  82. FlyeredUP Says:


    this article would have been better served after a caps victory but coming after a very hard fought caps loss in which I thought they had the better play sounds like you are blaming the officials. Maybe I’m reading between the lines. I hope the Flyers can end this Saturday but I think game five will tell us alot about both teams characture.

  83. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    flyer fans are so cute. they continue to whine about a perceived ovechkin dive three games ago not to mention get all worked up about an article in the paper, yet suggest that we just “get over” the blatantly bad calls in this game. you guys stay classy.

  84. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Kyle, Jason, Adam, Ben, Mike Vogel, Philly Voice of Reason wannabe’s,

    Since there won’t be much activity here after tomorrow, I invite all of you jerk offs to the Montreal blogs next week, where I’ll be teaching them hockey basics like I’ve tried to do here with you morons.

    Mark my words, coming from the #1 hockey expert in North America, Saturday’s score, Flyers 4, Caps 2

    Piss off.

  85. Game Over Green Says:

    Caps in 7.

  86. FlyeredUP Says:

    sorry didn’t catch the other post .
    The series is not over. If the Caps play like they did last night it’s definately not over.
    Have a Good weekend Hocky fan!

  87. Fashi13 Says:

    “God grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the Courage to change those things I can, and the Wisdom to know the difference. (Reinhold Niebuhr 1892-1971)”

    I am a Caps season ticket holder, and a Fan of almost 30 years. I applaud Mike for Blogging about this, because the only way to get the NHL to do anything is through Media pressure.

    BUT, We have to stop, We really do. The refs missed a lot of calls, tonight they missed more that should have gone the caps way and they were horrible, but if Ovie hits the empty net, we aren’t having this conversation, and that was something we had control over, just like not covering Knuble, or clearing the puck all those times. We can only control what we can control, thats it, so focusing on all the BS from the refs is totally counter productive, and it’s excuse making if the team or coaches are doing it.

    For the Dumb-assed Flyers fan that said Ovie dove, you are an idiot, and I despise little minded sports fans that are too dumb to take of their team fandom hat for a minute and realize that we are all hockey fans. Your inability to look at things objectively renders all your other statements moot, because we know you are a homer and dope. He was definitely tripped, it was almost a slew foot. He gave it a little extra spin on the fall, but that’s not a dive. You want to talk diving, talk about your boy Richards last night, that Lisp having little F** was barely touched and he went down like JFK in the Zaprudder film. He called Ovie a diver after the Umberger hit and then comes back the next game with a dive that would make Sidney Crosby proud. Just shut up, Ovie doesn’t dive, because he only knows one speed, and thats all ahead FULL.

    The refs did miss the Semin getting his stick up when Richards hit him, and a few others on the caps, but the majority of the calls missed, should have gone the Caps way last night. My biggest problem with the Kozy call, other than the fact that he was tripped, is that they have let that go at least 20 times this series, Hartnell has made his living that way in this series. By the way, he sure turned from man to mouse when confronted with Brash in the first, typical Flyer, push around boys, turn tale and run when the men show up. And Flyer fan, the series is not over, so take a lesson from Tracy Mcgrady, and don’t start talking about being in the second round, until you’re actually there.

    I’m Out.

  88. Fashi13 Says:

    Hey Filthy voice of reason, put your money where your mouth is. I’ll bet you whatever you want that you guys don’t close it out saturday in our barn. I’ll be there and if the Flyers win, I’ll send you whatever the bet is. So either put up some dough that I’ll match or shut up and go back to lurking in malls, hanging around playgrounds, or whatever it is that you do in between picking up your SSI checks and food stamps. Lord knows you can’t possibly have gainful employment.

  89. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Wrong. It’s over.

    I’m just in here kicking a dead squirrel around. You Caps fans are right. This is a total waste of my time. This series is over. What the F am I doing here listening to losers whine about officiating? I’m off to the Jersey shore for some oysters at the Lobster House in Cape May for dinner. I also need to pick up some beer for the game tomorrow. Then there’s the Philles/Mets series this weekend. Damn, I love this time of year. Peace out. Good luck next year. I’m sure Francois Bouchard will make you better.

  90. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Fashi 13,

    You started off so well; actually sounded somewhat intelligent, and then BANG, you dove and wallowed in the same pile of shit that the rest of you useless Cap fans dwell in. The problem I have with “putting my money where my mouth is” is that every time of done so, I’ve won and never collected because ass holes like you would slither away and hide when the bet was loss. Fuck off and than the Flyers for allowing you to leave the game early tomorrow to beat the beltway traffic. You suck.

  91. Fashi13 is a Jerk-off Says:

    Does anyone think the Caps have a chance to win this series?

  92. Fashi13 Says:

    Yeah, You Philly fans are so smart, you spent the first half of the year booing Carter and wanting him to be traded. Pretty smart. Typical overreaction from a Philly fan, just like the famous quote “Donovan McNabb is not an NFL quarterback”

    Not Bouchard, but the guy wearing number 8 will probably get a little better, but I’m sure you Flyers fans would take Mike Richards over him. HaHaHa. Remember Richards first playoff experience was bending over and getting violated by the Sabres.

  93. Jon (FOHS) Says:

    I’m not going to lie … I stopped reading comments after the first Flyers fan showed up. It’s amazing to me how tough people are when the internet is between them and whoever they are bashing. Get back to your Stratego game in your parent’s basement … I’m certain it’s your turn.

    I’ve covered more NHL events than you’ve seen. The non-calls are going to happen but the phantom “retaliation” calls are disgraceful. How the Caps have 2 more penalities than a team that racked up over 500 more PIMs in the regular season, is beyond me. Maybe the Flyers stop being assh*les in the playoffs … I guess the team leaves that up to the fans that hide behind the internet.

  94. Fashi13 Says:

    Is the series at 4 games to 1 or 3 games to 1. I guess that’s your answer Dummy.

  95. Dangerfield Says:

    “Voice of Reason”? Ha ha! I’m all for your sports fanaticism. And I especially like your use of F-bombs and other such choice words. A sure sign of intelligence. Very entertaining. Keep it up! Mr. FlyeredUP is so civilized he’s boring.

    So, anyway, yes, there were some really bad calls. Did they make the difference between winning and losing? NO! OV missed an open net. Both Huet and Biron made some spectacular saves that were labelled for the back of the net. But to say that if those calls went the other way the Caps would have surely won is nothing but a dream. That’s how the Stanley Cup playoffs are. What the Capitals have to do is take the fact that they could and should have won that game as a positive for the next one. The last time I checked, it takes four wins to win a series, not three.

    And the only way to tell how bad the officials are is if BOTH teams agree that they suck. On that, it looks like we have a concensus.

    (I apologize for the big words like “fanaticism” and “concensus”. I realize not everyone on the Internet has an education. There’s always Google to help.
    By the way, did you catch my sarcasm above? Ooops! Another big word! Sorry!)

    Let’s do this again after Game 5.

  96. Fashi13 Says:

    See, Flyers VoR, I am intelligent, actually brilliant. A lot of my closest friends are Flyers fans from South Jersey, so that’s why I laugh at you. You come over here to gloat when the series isn’t even done yet. You lack the ability to be even a little objective, where as my buddy(Who’s a Flyers fan for 30 years) called me last night after the first OT and said “wow, the refs have been real bad tonight, mostly to you guys”, and he called the Kozlov penalty the worst he can remember. Real Hockey fans can be somewhat objective. That’s why I can say that the Flyers have outplayed the Caps for 75% of this series, so there’s just no way I can blame the losses on the refs.

    That’s also why I would never run and hide from an obligation, or a bet. Your lack of these things is why you are copping out. It’s ok, I wouldn’t expect anything else from you.

  97. Game Over Green Says:

    It’s a mistake to look past the current series, as some of the Flyers advocates in the comments section seem to be doing. Yes, it’s obvious a win for the Flyers on Saturday means they win the series and advance, but don’t jinx it for your team by behaving as if it’s in the bag.

  98. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Is there any crying towels left? Jon (FOHS) just joined and it sounds like he’ll be needing one too.


    I don’t give a shit how many NHL events you’ve covered, you’re right there with the rest of the dead beat loser caps fans here on this blog. Where do you cover them from, a concession stand on the concourse? Can I get mustard on my dog? Not to fret… after tomorrow, you’ll have nothing to cover.

  99. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Right on Dangerfield, but you might as well go tell it to a tree. The Caps fans only see through red glasses.

  100. Txcapsfan Says:

    It to this day amazes me that fans of a team who get calls going there way make such a big deal about how they are non calls. Reading what the Flyers fans say is a joke. There are several things to consider.

    1. The caps were raped by the officials several times throughout the series. I have seen more non calls or obviously bad calls in favor of the flyers stave one questionable in game 1 where Thoresen took a puck, but its funny that as scarey as that was the dr’s said all clear (seems to that there should at least be a deep bruise.. talk about acting)

    2. No matter how you shape it up. Pro or otherwise if officials are not callin the obvious penalties it take a mental tole (rolling on the goalie and not getting up is unsportsman like and should have been a game misconduct). If we take the missed high sticking calls that is just outright dangerous and could cost someone their career especially if they are allowed to get away with it. I guarntee if the Caps retaliated they would have been called and given a game misconduct (the ref was looking right at Semin when blood was drawn so he saw it). This will also cause a team to play cautious because no matter how a important the cup is it is not worth you livelyhood (funny as pointed out before that is why the flyers were on double secret pobation because they CHEAP SHOT people).

    It is important to take this for what it is. The dirtiest team in hockey is getting away with everything from blatant goalie interference to slashing to elbowing. I really could just paste the rule book in here and if it is a penalty against the Flyers the refs just look away. Should the Caps overcome this… Yes based on the situation should they? If someone was coming into your job trying to hurt you (not play a physical game) i would be concerned about it to… No matter how much my paycheck was this year.

    All that being said… Flyers fans accept what your team is the dirtiest, cheapest team in the NHL. Us Caps fans may need to say we have a good team and as long as the core is together we will wash the Flyers next year and the year after because dirty does not win you championships it gets you a bad rep and a bunch of fans that do not understand the game.

  101. Adam Says:

    Jurcina didnt even have two hands on the stick, he did what you’d expect a good hockey player to do when an opposing player runs into him, he lowered his shoulder and shat on that little bitch.

  102. Mike B Says:

    Ultimately Mike is dead on with his article. I’m also not one to complain about the refs even when they are clearly blowing calls in such a one sided way as they were last night. Because I feel if you play well a single bad reffed game wont kill you. If the Caps exerted this kind of effort in games 2 and 3 the series would be 3-1 the other way most likely. The unfortunately part of the refs “timely” off night is this is the first game we saw playoff hockey from the Caps. I think they outplayed the flyers yet didn’t come out with the win. If they continue to play like they did last night they have a real shot of repeating the fortunes of their 1988 predicessors. This is a young team and I just hope they can shake off that gut wrenching loss. Or better yet use it to fuel revenge! Never stop believin! Go Caps!

  103. Joe Says:

    Dear Caps Fans,

    Complaining about the officiating does not withdraw you from playoff elimination.

    The series is 3-1. It’s not over, but it is 3-1 Flyers.

    Don’t get mad, just get better

  104. Joe Says:

    I’m all for supporting your home team, but when you gave your best effort last night and still lost, that’s not a good sign.

  105. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Make that 2 more crying towels… Txcapsfan has joined the mix…

    Do me a favor and shut your big fat pie hole. Don’t tell me what it takes to be a champion. Why would I take that from a fan of any of the DC teams? What have they ever won? Caps can go for the Lady Byng trophy, we’re going for the cup ass wipe.

    Sorry, I really can’t take this anymore. I’m out.

  106. Jason Says:

    wow i get back from class and phily voice of reason is still on here talking shit when he even admits he is wasting his time. i have several suggestions for you.

    find a job
    find a house other than your mom’s
    find a girlfriend
    have sex with her
    be an objective hockey fan instead of blindly following your cheap team and admit things, like we do
    work at your new job
    buy furniture because inflatable and futon dont count
    stop playing warcraft
    pretty much just get a life

  107. Adam Says:

    for some reason our trusty voice of reason has said “he’s out” multiple times but keeps coming back to bitch, i sure hope you have your own “crying towel” because your doing more of it than anybody else here

  108. Philly Sucks Cheese Whiz Says:

    The Flyers and their “style of play”, along with their fans deserve every single year they have had to (and will continue to) endure of their Stanley Cup drought. This is a team and a fan base that truly lacks class and 2 Cups (won in a bygone era decades ago) in 40 years is about right for a team that prides itself more on it’s toughness rather than it’s actual hockey skills.

    32 years and counting 🙂

  109. Jason Says:

    you are such a tool voice, you feed on being a dick to fans of other teams. go work out some aggression on a punching bag or go masturbate again for what is most likely number 12 on the day. i believe we have 3 more super bowls than you if you want to bring up championships

  110. Scott Says:

    The NFL network has the head official from the league answer questions by the TV announcers (Eisen) each and every week. He explains the calls that were made and even admits errors when they’re made. It gives the viewer some insight into how the league tries enforce the rules consistently and improve their officiating staff.

    Something for the NHL to consider…

  111. Jason Says:

    phily vor doesnt have a crying towel he has a cumrag in his moms basement stashed under his futon which is conveniently located 3 feet from his comp so he can fold it up and start either wasting his time on other team’s sites/watching freaky fetish porn/playing warcraft

  112. Txcapsfan Says:

    He likes to pride himself on being the voice of reason for the Flyers. Wow that is embarassing for a team. Here Voice of reason here is the rulebook perhaps with as much as the Flyers have gotten away with you have forgotten what the rules are:

    In addition its not whining its stating facts of the game so I am unsure of why you are so woked up perhaps you are insecure that Flyers can not compete without playing dirty and as soon as they start getting called their “cup chas” is over.

  113. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    Philly Voice of Reason asks why he should take advice on what it take to be a champion from a DC team? i suppose not considering such advice is exactly why there have been so many championship parades down broad street.

    caps fans can take comfort in knowing that if the same calls had been made against the flyers they would be screaming from the top of the art museum steps.

    its just funny that the flyer fan base cant just embrace the fact that their team is playing great playoff hockey and have real chance of advancing despite finishing last in the league a year ago. they have some sort of underlying inferiority complex that requires them to bitch about meaningless alleged dives and columnist’s words to get fired up. they need to call the other teams players names and shout obscenities about him to make themselves feel better, i suppose. i guess the inferiorty complex comes from having been so dissapointed in their sports teams inablility to win the big ones.

    flyers fans truely embrace their bully persona. but just like the schoolyard bully, we all know the bluster and bravado are really just masks for their insecurities. once someone fights back, they cower. the caps took a good first step in fighting back last night. if they continue to do so i believe this series is far from over.

  114. Rodan Says:

    I couldn’t agree more.
    You’ve talked about the league adding a coaches challenge “red flag”, in the future. It would be great if you could challenge a “no-call” high sticking to the face that draws blood. I realize that in the NFL you can only challenge an actual call, not one that was missed.

    The NHL rule that gives an additional 2 minutes for drawing blood, while it seems like a strange rule to me, shows that blood is obviously a concern of the league’s. So, why not let the officials review missed calls that draw blood. Is it all about the logistics of where to reset the clock, what happened between the “no-call” and the next whistle, or which team has possession of the puck, etc…

    Maybe they should allow off ice officials to stop play.

    I know that it would be difficult to implement these kinds of changes, but when the refs can’t do the job properly for either team, they need to think of ways to fix it. The players work too hard to settle for human error from the officials.

  115. Joe From Philly is an Idiot Says:

    Joe, I hope to see your comments when your team gets taken in 7. You’re a loser! Great job on representing the rest of the Philly fans…

  116. caphcky Says:

    Do the Caps lose any games on their own? The Caps got some calls called against them last night, but SHUT UP and play. Its like all the crying at the end of the year everybody was up in arms because the Caps were sent out on the road before that 3 game homestand and the fans wanted EVERYBODY fired for making them play all those road games.

    Well, we won those games and all of a sudden its forgotten. Watch the game thru your eyes and not your *ss. Hind-sight in WASHINGTON is 20/20.

    The team gave a great effort last night and the only thing they need to work on is their line changes. They MUST realize they can only have 5 skaters on at one time….THATS what cost them this game.

  117. Novaron Says:

    Just curious since the Flyers fans bitch about Ovie’s alleged dive, well i understand Mr. Richards is not above diving himself, perhaps taking lessons from Danielle. Mike thanks for the write-up which is sober and thoughtful as usual and of course the Flyers fans simply parrot what their homer announcers say.

  118. Adam Says:

    Lets move past last nights game, fun is fun and done is done. Would anyone like to discuss what we really need to capitalize on to take the next game?

  119. ConshyFlyersFan Says:

    I’d have to say Mike is entitled to any griping he wants to do on his own blog, but at the same time it is nice to show some objectivity on a blog that is put on the Capitals official site. Yes, obviously the refs missed some calls, but they ALWAYS do. It gets annoying for everyone. I do not think there is any way of gaging if a missed call costs the Caps the game though. High sticks, face washes, and slashing was ignored BOTH ways. Unfortunately it is hard to take a blog like this seriously if the writer fails to point out the ineptitude is effecting everyone in the playoffs, and not just his team.

    Stereotyping a fanbase as a whole is just plain stupid. I’m sure diehard Caps hate to be told that they jumped on the bandwagon a month ago. Generalizing gets us nowhere. Although some Flyers fans are probably idiots, so are some Caps fans. Why don’t we hold individuals responsible for their stupidity, rather then taking cheap shots like “Philly is white trash” or “Washington doesn’t know anything about sports”. I sure as hell know I’ve never booed my own team, and I’ve shook the hands of many fans of opposing teams. I’ve also never seen another Flyers fan get in a fight with a fan of another team at the Wachovia Center. It sounds like most of us are guilty of believing everything we hear about other fans, and using it as gospel.

  120. ConshyFlyersFan Says:

    Also Mike, you failed to mention that Jim Jackson (Flyers play-by-play guy) retracted his statement about the “flop” as soon as he said it. What you wrote is a little misleading. Of course, you’ve never said one thing, and then corrected yourself when you got a better look, right?

  121. errantelf Says:

    You are incorrect in two ways.

    First, you cannot determine whether or not the Caps would have been able to score if any of the non-calls had actually been made, and every bad call against the Caps is 2 minutes where their chance to score is negligible. Can you really say that the 8-10 minutes of PP time the Caps didn’t get out of the THREE missed high sticks would definitely have not made a difference? or how about losing all the momentum the caps had just built by sending Poti to the box for being D: tripped AND hooked into the goaltender.

    Second, noncalls DID directly result in TWO of the Flyers goals. The Flyers second goal was scored after a missed hand pass committed by the Flyers, and of course the game-winning OT goal which occurred immediately after yet another uncalled goaltender interference.

    Sometimes you gotta say “thems the breaks, bad reffing is something a team must overcome,” and sometimes you gotta realize that one-sided officiating just may have changed the outcome of the game.

    Good for you Mike to recognize when it needed to be said.

  122. Joe Says:

    Caps fans are bandwagon jumpers who don’t know much about hockey.

    You guys had about 12 people there last night. Couldn’t even hear any cheers when you guys scored, lol.

  123. Kip Says:

    Nice writing here. Let’s be honest, everyone: the refs did everything possible to give the game to Philly last night. Watch the replay for all the evidence you need.

  124. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    Joe is smart.

  125. Novaron Says:

    I find it curious that we are called loser fans but we support our team despite losing and getting screwed and the loser fan of a winning team (voice of unreason) brings the bs saying the Flyers are getting screwed by the refs (yeah and I have a bridge in Brooklyn for sale) and how Ovie is a diver (but ignores Richards’ dive) Stop gloating, your team won.

  126. Kip is W-R-O-N-G Says:

    Kip, perhaps you need a lesson in hockey history. The Flyers are probably the most hated team in the league, Especially by the refs. Perhaps you haven’t seen enough of our games this season. Why would they be trying to hand the game to the Flyers, especially when the next round would be CROSBY VERSUS OVECHKIN. If the NHL is as crooked as you’d like to believe don’t you think they would advise their crooked refs to make sure Caps/Pens happens this season?

  127. Huh? Says:

    Please point out Richards’ dive. I’m dying to see it.

  128. Adam Says:

    Joe your being a little hypocritical, after all your entire stadium full of fans jumped on our band wagon of trying to get everybody there wearing the same color

  129. Adam makes no sense. Says:

    Adam…all fans of all sports do that, especially in the playoffs. Are you new to the idea of wearing your team colors?

    I’ve learned alot today. Apparently the Washington Capitals franchise invented the “white out”.

  130. HERE ADAM Says:

    I wiki’d for you. Hmm, I see the mention of an “orange crush”. Nothing about a “rock the red” though.

  131. Mike L Says:

    First of all, a note to Stoooo. the Caps would have made the playoffs without winning the division. Their record was better (due to tiebreakers) than Boston and Ottawa) and they would have finished 7th in the conference had Carolina beaten Florida in their last game. The Caps would have gotten the 7th seed, Ottawa the 8th (the two teams had identical records, but the Caps swept the Sens) and Boston would have been home.

    Be that as it may, what Mike is saying here are his thoughts, his ideas, his words. He can say what he wants, this is his blog.

    I’m a 20+ year Caps season ticket holder, but I know bad officiating when I see it, and last night was horrid going both ways. Two teams that couldn’t stop a steady parade to the box in the first three periods for some really stupid penalties (two too-many-men penalties in a playoff game is horrid) all of a sudden become angels and don’t commit any for a period and half in OT? Hardly. These guys were bad, and both coaches were yelling at them. Hasenfratz is a so-so official who has 10 playoff games in his career as a ref, which began in 2000 (eight years). Don Van Manssenhoven is actually one of the better referees although last night he probably would say was not one of his better nights. He about 70 games of playoff experience over the past 9 years. They’re human, the players are human, etc.

    The reality is that the Caps need to win the last 3 in a row. So far in the series, the Flyers have outplayed the Caps clearly in 2 games (winning both), and in two games the Caps played the Flyers closely, outplaying them slightly in Game 4, but not enough to win in OT, and playing them pretty evenly in Game 1, which the Caps won. There is still a long way to go in the series, and I don’t think the Caps have played their best game yet in it. I am sure that the Caps will play their best game of the series tomorrow, and I am also sure the Flyers expect that as well. If the Flyers come into the Phone Booth thinking it will be easy, they’ll leave with their asses kicked. The Flyers are too well-coached for that to happen though. I am sure they’ll be ready.

    One thing no one has mentioned though is that both teams expended a lot of energy last night in Philly, and the turn around for the next game is 40 hours. Sure, they’re all professional athletes, but that game and half last night is going to play on some of the older players who are coming off injuries (Kevin Hatcher comes to mind immediately). There will likely be some impact from that exertion.

  132. Adam Says:

    Your right, that was a stupid comment to make, it just seemed kinda funny to me that you all felt the need to hand out orange shirts at the door to try and get everyone lookin like a fruit

  133. It's the Broad St. Bully and the Killer With No Face, I Mac Bullets Burn Like Tequilla With No Chase Says:

    I’d rather my fanbase have a legacy of being the most abrasive, intimidating, and brash in the league than being a bunch of new jacks who wouldn’t dare live in the city their team is from. Yeah I said it.

    Also your team and your “team pride” is based around a lucky pull in the 2004 draft lottery, kinda like Pittsburgh’s team is based around poor performances from a nearly bankrupt team and a few lucky lottery draws. Good luck in the future and time will tell if Ovechkin is a man of steel or just a man who gets concussions and season ending injuries just like other saviors of the NHL before him have.

    3-1. That’s the cold truth.

    Lemme type that again. 3-1.

  134. Joe From Philly is an Idiot Says:

    No, Joe is an Idiot, thanks.

  135. Can somebody find "It's the Broad St. Bully and the Killer With No Face, I Mac Bullets Burn Like Tequilla With No Chase " a momy please... Says:

    What a dork.

  136. Scai Says:

    Ovy is no diver. He was lucky he wasn’t injured on that play.
    Mike Richards is a diver. Go, watch the highlights on , no doubt he took a dive on the Eminger penalty. Even the tsn guys get that.

  137. Adam Says:

    i live in d.c. bitch, always have, and i’ve been a caps fan since day one, not much choice in the matter since my entire family has always been the same way, not that i wanted a choice

  138. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    hey, that “broad street guy” is smarted than joe. i’m sure none of the flyers fans come from jersey or outside philly. yeah, pretty sure they are all from south philly.

    as for the lucky pull in the lottery.. yeah we should have declined that pick and built like the flyers. overpay for free agents and aging vets and watch our cap explode in three years.

    more insecure ramblings from flyer nations. got to break other team’s fans down to feel better about themselves.

  139. wah Says:

    I advise “Flyers Fans are funny” to go look at the Flyers roster before he says stupid things about our team.

  140. Scai Says:

    Too bad nobody in Phili is more than half-literate. Otherwise they could have their own blog and leave their horsecrap there.

  141. KCME Says:

    Ok all I have to say is that all these Philly fans who keep saying we have only one maybe two goal scorers are wrong. We have a great team. Young, yes, inexperienced, yes but they have fire and personality and have a real love of the game. We have 4 lines that contribute nightly in important ways, including scoring. I don’t understand all the hatred. I really think that the Philly fans come on this website b/c they know the calls were crappy.
    Despite the crappy calls though there were some huge mistakes that the team made that really did make the difference (I mean seriously how can you have too many men on the ice calls 2x in a playoff game!). Mike Vogel though will be one of the first ones though to point out weaknesses on the Caps team along with Tarik.
    As far as Mike Wise goes nobody who’s a Cap fan even give him the time of day b/c just a couple months ago he was making fun of our team and hockey and talking trash about us so you can’t even begin to include him in class arguments b/c he’s classless all around.
    Oh and by the way blogs are for opinions….

  142. Scai can't spell Philly apparently Says:

    Last time I checked Philly was spelled with 2 l’s and a y.

  143. errantelf Says:

    Obviously, I meant the horrible goaltender interference call on Kozlov, not Poti- I was thinking about that horrid Boston game and had Poti going to the box on my brain.

  144. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    yeah, i should, but luckily someone else already did. at you can see exactly what i’m talking about. you have the least cap space of any team in the league. i think you are about $2M under next years cap and have about $30M of the $52M tied up in seven players. oh, any you have to sign Carter and Umberger and somehow stay under the cap. that means bye bye smith, modry, prospal, hatcher and good luck getting decent players to fill those shoes. the year after that is even worse cause your gonna have to sign biron knuble, etc. fact facts wah, you’d better hope you win it all this year cause your window is about to close.

    wah should do his research before he shoot his mouth off.

  145. Txcapsfan Says:

    In all fairness to the Flyers fans what were the missed calls last night? Semin’s high stick on Richards (the one that involved the gloves and not the stick?). They sure pale in comparison to 1 intentional high stick and another high stick that drew blood. Why are the flyers fans posting here so defensive about the Flyers dirty play? You talk all kinds about the history around the Broad Street Bullies why shy away now from the same type of dirty play now?

  146. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    p.s. flyers top salaries
    Briere = 30 years old
    timonen = 33
    gagne = 28
    richards = 23
    hartnell = 26

    caps top salaries
    ovechkin = 22
    nylander = 36
    semin = 24
    green = 22

  147. Joe Says:

    p.s. each teams power play oppertunities

    Flyers – 22
    caps – 20

    yeah, the calls are SOOOO going one way.

    The Flyers dont have the luxury of having their writers “go easy” like the caps do. They lost a game they easily could have won, so the writers blame it on penalties? Give me a break. When the Flyers lost game 1, the philly writers called them out on it. they have been doing that all year.

    instead of trying to make excuses, how about you look inwards and start from there. what was ovechkin doing on the GW goal last night? he was the only one there and knuble was wide open. dont call it a bad officiating, rather thats lack of responsibility in your own zone and immaturity. but hey, these guys have to learn, right?

    Instead of pampering your star player, why dont you admit he didnt make the play he should have. and maybe if your writers wouldnt go so easy on them and make their excuses, they would step it up and turn it around.

  148. Anthony Says:

    What do the writiers have to do with the team? Do you think Ovie reads this for advice before each game?

    Its not our job to coach the team, thats Bruce’s job.

  149. Txcapsfan Says:

    Hold up Joe,

    Read what you posted:
    “p.s. each teams power play oppertunities

    Flyers – 22
    Caps – 20”

    It would seem to me that the “refs” are trying to keep the game fair by calling an even number of power plays RATHER than calling the game as it should. During the season how often where the Flyers so close in powerplay oppertunities… Never because thats not their game…

    To address the pampering of the star player.. He has not backed down from a scrum or backed out of a check.. Unlike what is that briere guy. Who cheap shots and RUNS. Come on now. Stop tryign to end around to make it seem like you all are a great team. If we had gotten the 8 minutes of powerplays for the high sticks and had not taken the 2 minutes for fictious goalie interference (Just like the Ducks Stars game). And had not been issued minor on Green for roughing (it really was elbowing). The game would have been different. You have to be able to see that (otherwise if it did not impact the game they would not call penalties)

    As I stated before not calling those type of penatlies affects the players and the game itself. What would it have taken the Flyer’s ending someone’s season/career for a decent call last night… Accept it

    The caps should have come back from it, but again it takes its tole. It has been the same for 4 games now with no end in site. Cheap is Cheap and if you can not do anything back without the whistle what is the point?

  150. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    joe is really smart again. read your boy phil sheridan in the inquirer. he quite obviously carries the flyers water. suggesting that there were no fans before ovechkin came to town and that the caps fans cheered thorasens injury. he also suggests that briere is better than ovechkin. once again, my man, know your facts.

  151. Joe Says:

    This is about the blog that the senior writer for the caps wrote?

    Were you not aware of that?

    Quit crying about the penalties or lack thereof and look inwards.

  152. Anthony Says:

    All I can see is my belly button. I can’t see any farther inwards.

  153. melissa Says:

    You are all missing the point.

    What Vogs is saying is that the officiating has been consistently horrible for at least the last season, in all games, citing last night’s game as an example. It’s not about the Caps losing, it’s not about the Caps being down power play time, and it’s not about whether or not Ovechkin dove or was tripped. It’s about the fact that they are missing way more than they should be way too often.

    I know that this was a perfect opportunity for Philly fans to come on here and gloat, but what it all boils down to is that there are nearly 150 comments on this entry and, while still arguing for their respective sides, people are saying the exact same thing. So why are you even fighting about it if you agree with each other?

    Jebus, it’s not that hard, people.

  154. Philly voice of supidity Says:

    Thanks to all the Flyer fans for proving that Philly, does in fact, have the worst fans in the country.

  155. Funkyglovefacewash Says:

    Just got home from work and couldn’t believe all of the posts on here. Time for Funky to chime in. First of all, the Caps finally turned in a solid effort for a complete game, which has me feeling pretty good about tomorrow’s game. I agree the officiating sucks, but I know it goes both ways and don’t like to get into who had more bad calls or non-calls against them because in the end it’s up to your team to find a way to win. Carter’s goals were the result of lapse’s by the Caps and Queer’s, oops I mean Briere’s(I always spell his name wrong) was the result of us taking a stupid “too many men” penalty, so we can’t blame the refs for that one. Caps played good enough to win yesterday and will win tommorow if they play that good again. It’s funny how all of these Flyers punks waited ’til they were up 3 to1 to start running their mouths but that’s just shows how little faith they had in their own team. The other reason you bitches are talking all this s**t now is you know that even if the Flyer’s go on to win this series, they damn sure won’t win another. Ha ha ha, your boys are up in a 1st round series against the most inexperienced team in these playoffs and y’all are acting like you won the Cup, you pole smoking losers. The Caps will win tomorrow and then we’ll see what happens back in Philly.

  156. Txcapsfan Says:

    All the Comments by the Flyers fans say the same thing. HA HA we are winning no matter how their idiocy has impacted their ability to say there is something wrong with the way they are winning. I would want the Caps to beat them outright not with crap calls and would fell 100% cheated if the caps walked out winning the series on bad calls.

    It is what it is. Hopefully based on all of this the NHL will correct it next year. As was posted in my first post. We can beat the Flyers year after year. We are a better team and if we can not make it this year for whatever reason we will next.

    The flyers may not. Their game is dirty, and if the NHL Kneecaps their game style. They will be in last place again next Season

  157. Joe Says:

    Who’s the one running his mouth?

    Not once have I said the flyers will win. I only posted here regarding what this Vogel character has said. I’ve read it all throughout, and haven’t decided to say anything until now. After last night, the excuse about the officiating has to come in. But like I said, the PP chances have been 22-20 in favor of the Flyers. Yeah, really one-sided.

    And if they are missing way too much, Melissa, its kind of a moot point. So dedicating an article and a blog to it just releases your frustration with not winning games you can.

  158. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    joe is a genius.

  159. Joe Says:

    Saying the caps can take the flyers year after year is based solely on support of your home team, which is fine. But the numbers speak louder than personal desires.

    We’re 5-2-1 in thelast 8 games vs the caps

  160. Anthony Says:


    Quote the specific section of the post where hs says that power-plays are one sided.

  161. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    vogels blog was specific to last nights game. take off your orange or red colored glasses and honestly tell me that kozlov’s penalty was warranted, or greens or that the other calls should have been made that werent. despite all that, we were a bad bounce away from winning that in regulation. flyers should feel lucky the got out of there with a win. lets hope we get good officiating for both sides on saturday so it can be settled by the players.

  162. melissa Says:

    No, it’s not moot. The will continue to miss things long after we are out of it.

  163. melissa Says:


  164. Flyer Fans are funny Says:

    vogels blog was specific to last nights game. take off your orange or red colored glasses and honestly tell me that kozlov’s penalty was warranted, or greens or that the other calls should have been made that werent. despite all that, we were a bad bounce away from winning that in regulation. flyers should feel lucky the got out of there with a win. lets hope we get good officiating for both sides on saturday so it can be settled by the players.

  165. Wrenfield Says:

    I’m a Philly fan but I agree that the calls have been bad both ways. And I’m upset to see many of the Caps fans here saying all Philly fans are white trash morons incapable of objectivity. Do I want my team to win? Heck yeah. Would I like the refs to be more consistent? Heck yeah. Would I appreciate a honest acknowledgment that not all Philly fans are barbarians out for blood ? Heck yeah.

    And before you think I’m here to gloat, I’m only here to get a balanced perspective on the game. And since it’s playoff season, I’m just a wee bit hockey obsessed at the moment. :o)

    Our guys may or may not have won last night’s game on bad calls but we’re winning the series because so far, we’ve been playing better hockey.

  166. Jason Says:




  167. Joe Says:

    No, we are fans who enjoy seeing our team win.

  168. usiel Says:

    Jeez, some caps posters here need to brush up on internet 101 and ignore the trolling/baiting by some (not all) of the philly catamite trolls, heh.

    Officiating has be uneven not only in this series but in the others I have watched in this playoffs. Hell it was getting worse the last couple of weeks of the regular season but both philly/caps have to deal with the deck when it comes to the zebras.

    Its pretty obvious but typically the team that makes the least amount of mistakes is the one that will generally win. The caps have clearly made the most mistakes with their youth and inexperience and the flyers have cashed in on those mistakes and deserve their series lead. Last nights game was tough to lose as the young capitals probably played their best in the series and are starting to ‘get it’ when it comes to playing in the playoffs but hey thats OT. I just hope the caps come out on Saturday playing with the same determination and fans of both teams get a good game.

  169. doug Says:

    I agrre with you. I could hardly beilieve what I saw. Koslov would have made that goal, as he is great on the 1:1s had he not been tackled into the goalie (Is this football?). It should have been a penalty shot for him, even if he didn’t make it. I realize the Caps did not play a perfect game, and officiating is not perfect but does it always have to favor the team that is notorious for defining the “hit”? Thanks for the great article. It made me feel better about the game. BB was right. They did not deserve the fate they got.

  170. This is funny… It reminds me of that picture with the kid running in the Special Olympics.

    Hey, do Philly fans wipe their hands before they type or do they get Cheese Steak grease all over the keyboard?

    And to think, I grew up in PA… Does anybody actually move TO Philadelphia?


  171. Jason Says:

    no, nobody

  172. Jason Says:

    no, nobody

  173. Anthony Says:

    I was thinking of that picture too. I love it.

  174. Tom in FL Says:

    Now you all know why they call the place “Filthydelphia.” They are the worst fans in the world. They booed Mike Schmidt. This has nothing to do with who won and what calls were made or not made. I will even root for the Rangers over the Flyers. As long as the Flyers don’t win the Cup, the season is a success.

  175. notfadeaway Says:

    I just feel sorry for people who live in Filthydelphia. What a sad, ugly, pointless, stupid town… full of sad, ugly, pointless, stupid people.

    Last night’s game was 100% crap.

    The Flyers play 100% crap hockey, and for some reason the refs are being played like a fiddle.

    But you know what? No matter what happens tomorrow, the Caps are division CHAMPIONS, with a bright future — and the Flyers are just 8th seed chumps with a .01% chance of actually taking the Cup.

  176. acap1066 Says:

    I was happy to see that the Caps effort was back for last night’s game. As for the Philly fans who insist on insulting the Caps fans on our own board, just shows what you are mad of by what you type. You ruin good points by following the said points with insults. The officials were part of the game last night and arguably in the previous games. Being High School lacrosse official in the past, the best games that I officiated are the ones that I was not being an integral part of the outcome of the game. It is easy to get swept up in the game or over matched for the importance of the particular game. Looks like this is what happened last night. The officials made horrible and inconsistent calls. For this, they should be docked in their reviews by the NHL. Most leagues have a review process of their officials. Also, the Caps fans have a right to gripe and let out our frustration on a board related to our team. I would say get over it if this continues into Saturday. I am not going to go to the Flyers board and start insulting the Flyers team and fans and expect the same from courtiousness from the visitors from up north who decide to post hear. Facts are welcome, Insults are not and indicate who the person really is who types them. I don’t care what you say on your teams’sboards, it has no bearing/effect on me at all. To my last statement, these insults are why I dislike Philadelphia fans. I would think even less, and I kept the word hate from the last sentence only because of CHOP and the great work that happens there. The Philly fans will know what CHOP is, if not, just proves my point. For the CAPS fans, lets get it out of our systems today and focus on the game starting on Saturday.

  177. Tom in FL Says:

    I have to apologize after reading all the posts. Filthydelphia is not totally devoid of intelligence. That Wrenfield person seems intelligent and reasonable. Everyone else, especially Philly Voice of Stupidity, can lift their manhole covers and go back down into their tunnels.

    I will admit the Flyers have played better than the Caps, due I think to inexperience on the Caps part. I won’t persom=nally complain or not about the officiating. I will point out though that the Versus announcers last night made a very clear point that the refs *totally* missed the two highsticking non-calls to Bradley and Semin and totally botched the calls on Jurcina and Kozlov. I rarely hear network announcers so blatently call out the refs, so I will assume there’s some truth to all that. I am guessing most of you watched your local broadcasts, so maybe you didn’t hear the Versus people to get maybe an objective, fair view. The one (non) call that I found most unexplainable was the high stick to Bradley’s face. How could two refs and two linesmen both miss that play? (The linesmen can tell the refs if they see a high stick.) Maybe this game proves that the NHL needs three refs per game, because the two from last night only had one eye between them.

    That said, the Flyers have still outplayed the Caps. Biron has played very well, and that I didn’t really expect. Should the Caps bow out, I will immediately begin rooting for Montreal. At least the colors match. I also have no problem rooting for the Devils, but they might be gone. I can’t root for the Penguins. If Pitt and Filly play for the Eastern crown, I will just root for the West.

  178. fashi13 Says:

    To Huh? and Any other Flyers fan doubting Richards Dive last night, just check the tivo, at 15:19 of the first Richards broke in and Eminger got his stick on him just barely and immediately let go. Richards tumbled to the ice like he had just been taken Anally by Briere(Oh wait, that was 2 years ago in the playoffs), If Flyers fans are gonna call the Ovie tumble in game 3 a dive, then you just have to call what Richards did an even bigger dive. I tend to think they both embelished their falls(Richards a little more), and that neither dived since there were actual penalties. The Trip/Slew foot on Ovie being was much worse and more obvious then Emmys baby hook. This is just another example of You guys who mouthed off not being the least bit objective. I call a spade, a spade, whether it goes in the Caps favor, or not. Just like Most Caps fans just need to shut up and move on as far as the penalties, some of you flyers fans need to remove your heads from your partners ani, open your eyes, and be honest about what is actually going on out there. And Flyers Voice of Reason, way to back down when I called you out. You are the epitome of the internet tough guy, I will be at the game tomorrow and would gladly honor any wager, if you had the balls to step up. Just as I figured, you crawled back in your hole. Next time your mommy lets you use the dial up, Don’t.

  179. Wrenfield Says:

    Tom in FL, thank you. I appreciate the consideration. In return, I will say that Ovechkin is a force to be reckoned with which is why our boys are working so hard to contain him. The comments I’ve heard from our players after the games seem to indicate respect for his considerable talent. And Green, that guy makes me nervous every time he’s on the ice. He’s something…

    The bad calls seem to be consistent across the League. I’ve heard rumblings in various places that calls are being missed, bad calls are being made, and there’s no consistency in how the penalties are called. Since we’re all unhappy, I have to think that maybe all things are equal…I’m still admittedly biased toward the Flyers, though.

    fashi13, I watched the game three times and still don’t see that Richards took a dive. I thought he was genuinely hurt by the high stick. Again, I am biased so I could be wrong.

    I will also say that the Capitals played some darn fine hockey last night and the Flyers were lucky to have won last night’s game.

  180. fashi13 Says:

    Wrenfield, I’m not talking about the Semin highstick on Richards, that was no dive. I’m talking about the begining of the game, 5 minutes in, Emmy barely touched him with one hand on his stick and Richards went down like a ton of bricks. Again, I didn’t call it a dive, I don’t think he or Ovie dove, but if Flyers fans are gonna call Ovie a diver for his “embelishment” then there is just no way they can’t say the same about Richards on that play with Eminger.

  181. Wrenfield Says:

    fashi13, I’ll take a look. I find it hard to believe that Richie would embellish or dive. He doesn’t strike me as that type of guy…my mistake on which play you were talking about. I don’t know all of your guys names and I got the two plays confused.

    Tom in FL, I was at the game and so have to rely on my own eyes or those of my husband. I’ll admit there are things I miss. The hooks have to be pretty blatant for me to catch them. Which is why I get so upset when they’re not called. If I see them, then there’s no way the refs didn’t see them.

    Also, for the record, I don’t live in Philly. I live in South Jersey and am a Flyers fan. Is it wrong that I was rooting for the Rangers to take out the Devils? I didn’t like Philly’s chances against the Devils. I’m not counting the Caps out but I’m trying to realistically evaluate our chances. If we can beat the Caps, then I think we have a chance against the Rangers. The Flyers are hot and cold against the Devils and it’s mostly been very cold…Pittsburgh/Flyers (if that happens) is going to be bloody. They just don’t like each other…

  182. John 74 Says:

    I don’t get it. Through the first 3 games you guys had a lot of non-calls. Let’s not forget the Grammy winning performance from Ovechkin when his toe accidentally touched Umberger’s. This is hockey, you can watch any teams at any time and see bad officiating. You can’t expect the officials to win the game for you!
    There have been bad calls or non- calls going both ways. Its not that one sided.
    You need to remember that players are going to do anything they can to try to give their team an advantage. There is a lot at stake now!

  183. Sparrow Says:

    Ben from Washington Says:
    April 18, 2008 at 7:19 am

    Caps got some bad breaks, yes, but everything balances out over the course of the series. None of the calls or non-calls led directly to goals, so it’s a wash in the end.
    Just to give you a better understanding of the game…
    If the Caps were not stuck in their zone defending the bad calls, maybe they would have been in in the Flyer’s zone scoring goals!
    Nothing in hockey is a “wash”!

  184. Jason Says:

    i dont personally think that a non-call on goalie interference on a play that goes on to end the game is a wash…but thats just me

  185. Dan, Jr. Says:

    I was really surprised to see this kind of post from you, Mike. It’s definitely not sour grapes, and it’s hard to imagine you’ve been able to hold it back for so long. Anyone who’s read your blog or listened to your podcasts knows how you always refrain from blaming referees. You might not be blaming them for the Cap’s loss this time either, but you’ve pointed out some glaring inconsistancies that decent people wouldn’t deny. It’s amazing how different people see things.

    Referees are human (well, most of them). But, it’s sad that we are left checking ahead to see who’s officiating the next game as much as who’s going to play, be a healthy scratch or still on IR. They should be made more accountable and face consequences for their bigger mistakes since those mistakes can change a game’s outcome sometimes.

    Ovechkin is not a diver. He is the greatest hockey player in the league. We Cap’s fans know he is a decent, respectable person. All intelligent life forms who have witnessed the behaviour of Danny Briere, know that he is a wuss, scum, and toatally undeserving of any respect at all. While the fans of the Washington Capitals can be proud of our entire team, Flyers fans can’t possibly honestly say the same about theirs.

  186. John 74 Says:

    If you can’t see it as a dive, then you have to see it as a good bit of embellishment. Players are going to do anything they can to give their team an advantage.
    You can say whatever you want to about Danny Briere, but the fact is he leads the league in playoff goals.
    So scum or not, he’s a good hockey player. Have you ever watched Crosby play for the Penguins?
    Hockey is not about who is nicer or more respectable. I mean c’mon Donald Brashear played for Philly for a number of years before going to Washington.
    You aren’t crying about the way he plays anymore are you?

  187. txcapsfan Says:

    For better or worse what I have seen throughout this series they officials have let each team play their own game. Unfortunately the officials are/have been/ and will continue (no signs through 4 games its goign to change) to call the games this way.

    What this does is cause a distinctive advantage for the Flyers as more minor/major infractions are overlooked because that is “their game” where as if we (the Caps) throw a hard check it draws an instant penalty, and yes say what you want this has been the case throughout the series. It is what it is. The Flyers have been gifted the series because of this and that is why it has been said over and over again in the boards and blogs all over the net. Yes officiating is horrible across the league, but does this justify the bad calls in this series (How many other missed calls have drawn blood in the playoffs?)

    Seems to me that most of the questionable calls are not in the highlights especially those thrown up by the NHL which means this will never be corrected.

    There is, based on the NHL rules, a serious disparity in the calls and the type of calls based on the way teams games are being checked by the officials read the rulebook and that is fact. The only thing that keeps coming up from the Flyers fans is that the “Ovie” dive is the penalty that is missed. How can the 1 call you all find versus a series I can find be a balance of the game.

    It has been proven time and time again that officiating dictates games (this is why rules get changed) See the Avery rule addendum to the 2007-2008 rulebook.


  188. acap1066 Says:

    Good first period. Hope the Caps can keep this up. Mulberry (sp?) said that the Kozloc interference was “brutal” when they were talking about Goaltender interference and the calls being made. Just remember, from a former official from lacrosse, a no call can be a disadvantage to the team the was infracted against and therefore changes the game. Looks like there have just been too many mistakes by the officials league wide. Hope NHL cleans this aspect up in the next rounds no matter which team makes it.

    I like the intensity that the Caps have shown during the first period and hope they don’t have a second period melt down. Ovie finally looks in a groove and should be dangerous for the reminder of the game. I like the fact that he is finishing his checks with all other Caps.

  189. Dan, Jr. Says:

    John 74,

    I’ve always like Brashear. I actually liked the Flyers when they had Brashear, Roenick, Hanzus and a few other great players. Briere is a very talented player. But, he’s also a dirty jackass. And don’t get me started on Crosby.

    To me, hockey is about respectability and dignity. I guess I shouldn’t expect that from a lot of current Flyers fans. I’ve liked a lot of teams, because I like hockey. I don’t have to like the dirty players or their repulsive teams. I’m a fan of any player or team that plays good aggressive, but clean hockey. That’s why I’m still a fan of the Capitals, Avalanche, Sharks, etc. Meanwhile, I currently hate the Flyers, Ducks, Penguins, etc. I like people, players and teams I can be proud of. I’m embarrassed to have fellow hockey fans as ignorant of reality as you.

    Good day sir.

  190. Sombrero Guy Says:

    Wow. I never had respect for Philly fans, and now I have even less. The fact are the facts. Even the Vs announcers called out the refs for missing the high sticks and for the bogus penalty calls against the Caps. If someone calls out poor officiating, its not “crying” its just telling it like it is.

  191. Sombrero Guy Says:

    Seriously. Are flyers fans really trying to call that a Dive by Ovechkin? He got hit leg to leg, which spun him around and the “triple axle” was an attempt to shoot the puck towards the net. If you call that a dive, you probably have never played hockey, and definitely have never been hit leg to leg.

  192. Rhino40 Says:

    I agree 100% that the officiating in Gamne 4 was abominable…in more ways than the obvious ones.

    Sure, we deserved to be shorthanded for too many men (again) in the third period of Game 4–it was a dumb mistake for us to make.

    That said, I don’t think we deserved to get scored on during the ensuing penalty kill.

    Please forgive my ignorance, but am I the ONLY person who saw Poti pinned to the back boards by a Flyer, moments before Philly got the tying goal late in regulation of Game 4?.

    And if it wasn’t my imagination, isn’t that a penalty known as “Holding?”

    I’ll admit here and now that I have not been following the game since infancy. I started watching in my late 20’s and playing in my late 30’s.

    Anyhoo, it seems to me that the correct method of executing a power play is:

    1) Move the puck around,
    2) Get traffic in front of the net,
    3) DRAW the other team’s penalty killers out of position,
    4) Shot the puck and (hopefully) put it in the net.

    I honestly don’t see where “have your extra man pin one of the opponent’s penalty killers to the boards behind the net” fits into this formula.

    Help me out here…


  193. acap1066 Says:

    I am so happy that the Caps held on to win the game today. However, I hated how they either played tight or changed how they played for most of the 3rd period. Once again, the Flyers had too much space to skate and shoot. Give credit to the Flyers they came out to play in the 3rd period. Hopefully, it is the Flyers turn to play tight in Game 6.

  194. notfadeaway Says:

    Again, terrible officiating today. It was the only reason the Flyers weren’t out of the game by the time the 2nd was over. A missed call as Kozlov is tackled in the offensive zone during a period where the Caps were DOMINATING play.. then the (correct) slashing call sets up the ridiculous call on Fedorov, and a gift for the Flyers… this after they had gone 24 minutes or so with only one shot.

    How does the team that is getting so completely outplayed get rewarded with the same amount of power plays?

  195. Funkyglovefacewash Says:

    Another solid performance from the Caps, even better than the last game but we did take our foot off the gas a little in the 3rd. In Philly they can’t let up for even one shift if there’s to be a game seven. Now that Caps are back to playing the way they can, they could force a game seven but they’ll have to really bring it next game. I would also like to apologize to any innocent readers I may have offended in my earlier post. I’m not ashamed of taking the low road so much as I am of my choice of insults which were both homophobic and sexist. For the record, I respect every person regardless of their sex, race, religion or sexual orientation as long as they show that same respect to all others. Go Caps!

  196. Jason Says:


    hey maybe we should all go on to a phily blog and fight their fans

  197. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Can you clarify who won for me?

  198. John 74 Says:

    Dan Jr.
    Reality check. Have you been watching Semin play? He’s been punching everyone he can after the whistle blows.
    I too am an avid hockey fan. Not so much a Flyers fan. But hockey is hockey.
    I’m from Delaware. We don’t even have a hockey team. I watch any game televised no matter who is playing. Quite frankly I get more Caps games than any other team.
    I’ve been playing hockey for a long time, and every team I’ve ever played for or played against for that matter, has at least one player like that. Some are just more obvious than others.

  199. Dan, Jr. Says:

    Dear John 74,

    Reality check for you, sir. It’s quite obvious that your statement about Mr. Semin is a rather large exageration. Personally, I’ve never seen him or any other Washington Capitals player sneak around a scrum and sucker punch someone in the back of the head. I can not bring myself down to a level where I would have respect for a player that has on at least a few occaisions, also speared innocent players in the genital area.

    That clear enough for you, John Boy!

  200. Dangerfield Says:

    Anybody notice that Upshall’s goalie interference was almost identical to Kozlov’s the game before? Further proof that refs suck at both ends.
    Needless to say, the next game will be difficult in hostile territory where Flyer’s fans go ballistic at every inconsequential play. It’s best to take them out of the game early (if it’s possible to take them out at all) by hitting everything in orange and black. Just like today.
    Huet has been getting better and looking more confident as the series goes on. OV’s bound to break out sometime. Right?
    p.s Umberger looked like a complete fool trying to goad Brashear. You could tell he was scared. Brash been around long enough to just wait until next season to answer the call.

  201. acap1066 Says:

    Upshall’s goalie interference penalty was an absolute joke like Kozlov’s penalty was the previous game. I am happy that the Caps benefited from this joke call. I thought it was also interesting what the Flyers coach said about the officiating in this game from the article in the Washington Post today. Apparently he forgot that his team benefited from the same type of bad calls in the previous games. With this said, the NHL better start cleaning up these officials calls quickly.

  202. FlyeredUP Says:

    hey notfadeaway,

    good god are you still crying about not getting enough penalty’s called in your favor. News Flash –you had 7 penalty’s called in your favor to our 4 — CAPs won. what else do you cry babies want! We deserved every penalty with possibly the exception of the interference on Upshall bur he’sbeen such an AVERYesk player in the series he probably deserved it for some other penalty that was missed. Don’t worry your season ends Monday no matter how the calls go!
    I’m flyered UP!

  203. John 74 Says:

    Dan Jr.
    I’m not sure which player you are referring to. But I’m losing respect for a player who drastically embellishes. He then throws a good hard clean hit, but that’s not enough he then proceeds to grab the man’s legs and tries to throw him over the wall and into the bench. It was very funny, but not necessary.
    I’m sure you didn’t see that one either.
    Hockey players wear a cup, because it is a very nasty game and people will get hit in the groin on occasion. Look at what happened to Thoreson. He almost lost one of his nuts.
    This is the playoffs and emotions run high. Players will sometimes do things that aren’t always the best decisions.
    My point is; if you can’t handle it maybe you should try the BALLET!

  204. acap1066 Says:

    Here are some facts from

    Times short handed in the regular season:

    Flyers: 388
    Captials: 349

    Only nine teams out of thirty had fewer total time shorthanded during the regular season than the Capitals. Only two teams had either the same amount or higher in times short handed during the regular season. By looking at these numbers (facts), the Flyers tend to be shorthanded more often than not. Game 6 fits this model/trend. The Flyers coach and fans shouldn’t be surprised.

  205. Philly Voice of Reason Says:


    Look up how many penalties Cote and Downie had during the season. Cote played one game in this series so far and Downie hasn’t played at all. I think Cote had over 220? Maybe that has something to do with why the Flyers have less penalties in the playoffs?

    By the way, speaking of Cote, if he does play tonight for Knuble, he will bitch-slap Brashear if the score allows it.

  206. Kris Says:

    Now THAT was a comeback! What a team! From the coach, to the MVP, to the secondary scoring, to the Energy Line, to Huey; the Caps were impressive. By my count this team has come from behind to win 17 times this year.

    Based on their performance all season and especially the last two games, I’m not surprised by tonight’s result. But I am impressed, because the Flyers didn’t take a period off, they didn’t panic, and they didn’t give up. Philly played a great game, it just wasn’t great enough to stop the even better play of the very determined Washington Capitals.

    I can’t wait till tomorrow night. Rock the Red.

  207. fashi13 Says:

    Oh Philly Voice of Reason, good thing you crawled back in your hole and didn’t bet. Thats ok. You shouldn’t gloat until the series is over, especially one this competative. Here’s to a hell of a game 7.

  208. Dangerfield Says:

    What else did you expect from Don “Fat Pig” Koharski? I mean, talk about holding a grudge, No goaltender interference? A weak, weak penalty in Game 7 OT? Hmmm. So much for the NHL wanting Crosby vs. Ovechkin, eh?

    Take away Biron and it’s a blowout. Too bad “woulda, coulda, shoulda” means “next year”. But in the words of Pierre McGuire, “Lookout Eastern Conference. Here come the Washington Capitals!”

    See you next year.

  209. Steve P Says:

    The NHL will never be a first-tier league, like the NFL or MLB, due primarily to horrible officiating.

  210. […] I said, I should be pretty upset. Especially after what sounded like a poorly called game four (no comment from me – I didn’t see the […]

  211. Camila Says:

    whoah this blog is magnificent i like studying your articles. Stay up the great work! You know, lots of persons are searching around for this information, you can help them greatly.

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