Odds and Ends

The second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs begins tonight. If you look at the first round stats, you’ll see Alex Ovechkin’s name prominently featured among the league leaders in several playoff categories.

He is tied for second in scoring with nine points, tied for second with four goals, and tied for the league lead with six power play points. Ovie had five assists, tied for fifth among first-round participants. His 32 hits are tied for fourth-most in the league. Ovechkin skated at average of 24:03 per contest, tops among all forwards in the league.

Except for his team’s result, it was a pretty good first foray into Stanley Cup play for the Caps’ star left wing. As I wrote in the Postgame Notebook on caps.com after Game 7, the history of similar stars points to great things in the future for both Ovechkin and the Caps.

Last night was a good one for both of Washington’s minor league affiliate clubs. The Hershey Bears got a vintage goaltending performance from Frederic Cassivi and an overtime game-winner from Alexandre Giroux to snap a six-game postseason losing streak and stave off elimination in their first-round playoff battle with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. The Bears now trail the series 3-1 and Game 5 is Friday night at Wachovia Center.

Jared Bednar’s South Carolina Stingrays advanced to the third round of the ECHL playoffs with a 2-0 whitewashing of the Gwinnett Gladiators on Wednesday night at North Charleston Coliseum in the deciding game of the best-of-five series between the two teams. Stingrays netminder Davis Parley made 33 saves to support the offensive contributions of Matt Scherer (his first goal of the playoffs) and Travis Morin (his eighth).

The Stingrays now await the winner of the Columbia-Texas series to determine their opponent for the next round of the Kelly Cup playoffs. Columbia downed Texas in overtime on Wednesday to force a deciding Game 5 in Texas on Friday night.

Here are a few more items of note from around the NHL:
Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk, Buffalo’s Jason Pominville and Tampa Bay’s Martin St. Louis were named finalists today for the 2008 Lady Byng Trophy. On Friday, the league will unveil the three finalists for the 2008 Selke Trophy.

The Avalanche and Red Wings have met in the playoffs five times before, all in the seven-year span from 1996 to 2002. Colorado won three of the five series and 17 of the 30 games. Patrick Roy started in goal for the Avs in every one of those games while Detroit’s goaltender varied from year to year: Chris Osgood in 1996, Mike Vernon in 1997, Bill Ranford (4 games) and Osgood (2) in 1999, Osgood in 2000, and Dominik Hasek in 2002.

Four current Red Wings and three current Avs played in all five previous Detroit-Colorado series: Nicklas Lidstrom (30 GP, 5-13–18); Darren McCarty (30 GP, 7-3–10); Kris Draper (29 GP, 0-2–2); Kirk Maltby (25 GP, 4-2–6); Joe Sakic (30 GP, 12-13–25); Adam Foote (30 GP, 1-3–4); and Peter Forsberg (29 GP, 12-16–28).

April 24, 1994 – Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Gary Suter tallied three goals in a 4-3 overtime win over the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game Four of their Western Conference Quarter-final series. Suter became the eighth defenseman in Stanley Cup playoffs history to post a hat trick, joining Bobby Orr, Dick Redmond, Denis Potvin, Doug Halward, Paul Reinhart (twice), Al Iafrate and Eric Desjardins.

April 24, 1996 – Petr Nedved of the Penguins scored at the 19:15 mark of the fourth overtime period to give Pittsburgh a 3-2 win over Washington in the third-longest (now fifth longest) game in NHL history. Washington’s Joe Juneau was stopped by Ken Wregget on the first penalty shot ever taken in overtime of an?NHL playoff game.

April 24, 1999 – Colorado Avalanche goaltender Patrick Roy, the NHL’s all-time leader for postseason victories, earned his 100th career playoff win as the Avalanche defeated San Jose 3–1 to take a 1-0 lead in their Conference Quarter-final series.

April 24, 2003 – After having upset the Detroit Red Wings in four straight games, the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim took the first game of their Western Conference Semifinal from the Dallas Stars with a 4–3 overtime victory. Petr Sykora scored the winning goal 48 seconds into the fifth overtime period. The 80:48 of overtime made it the fourth longest game in NHL history.

April 24, 2006 – Colorado Avalanche center Joe Sakic set an NHL playoff record by scoring his seventh career overtime goal in a 5-4 victory at Dallas in Game 2 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal. Sakic passed the legendary Maurice Richard, who notched six playoff overtime goals in his 18-year Hall of Fame career. Richard had held or shared the League record since March 29, 1951, when he scored his third career playoff OT goal to tie Boston’s Mel Hill.

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29 Comments on “Odds and Ends”

  1. Scai Says:

    Great piece by Adam Proteau of the Hockey News:

    “Dear 2007-08 Edition Of The Washington Capitals,
    This might be the toughest breakup letter I’ve ever written. But my affections for you and the way you’ve played the game were on the verge of rising to bunny-boiling heights, so in a way, I guess it’s a good thing the officials put the screws to you in Game 7 of your first round series against Philadelphia.”

    A must read for every Caps fan:

  2. CAPS FAN Says:

    Great article Scai…my feelings in a nutshell! And although it sucked to end the season on that note, I think a Pens-Caps playoff matchup next season after our boys have a Post-Season under their belts will prove to be even more entertaining than it would have been this year.

    I’m sad I won’t be around DC next season to watch these guys continue on their climb to greatness…thank God for Vs and the internet!

  3. Turk in Alaska Says:

    “April 24, 1996 – Petr Nedved of the Penguins scored at the 19:15 mark of the fourth overtime period to give Pittsburgh a 3-2 win over Washington in the third-longest (now fifth longest) game in NHL history. Washington’s Joe Juneau was stopped by Ken Wregget on the first penalty shot ever taken in overtime of an?NHL playoff game.”

    After the initial shock that the season was over I immediately thought about this event in Caps history. On my way home, (had to watch the game at the local ice rink) I thought… This season wasn’t bad at all, not in any respect. Would I have liked them to knock off the Flyers and send their fans home crying, hell yes! But, we got the opportunity to watch our Young Guns grow up in that series.

    As I pulled in the driveway and got out of the truck the Alaska spring sun blasted me in the face as if to remind me that the future is indeed bright for us Caps fans.


    PS, As a long time Caps fan the anguish I felt on April 24, 1996 far outweighed that of which I felt Tuesday night.

  4. dumpnchase Says:

    You’re right, Turk. That one hurt bad and for a long time. I remember sitting down next to Steve Kolbe for the start of the third period and he said, “Next goal wins this series.” He was right. And injury got added to insult a game later when we lost Pat Peake.

  5. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    For those of you who doubt my hockey knowledge… Yes, I wrote this before game 7. The final score was 4-3 Flyers for those of you who missed the game.

    Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    April 22, 2008 at 8:52 am
    Ok, here it is, my prognosis of tonights game…

    The Caps have been facing elimination the last two games, proverbial “backs against the wall”, and to their credit, they’ve come out with more fie than the Flyers in the last 2 games. The Flyers were able to match the intensity at times during those games, but they needed a 60 minute effort and that didn’t happen. I also credit the Caps for making neutral zone adjustments in this series to eliminate the long break-outs by the Flyers that were leading to odd man rushes in the first 3 games.

    Now tonight, we get to see the heart of the Flyers; how they react when their backs are up against the wall for the first time. Unfortunately I’m not sure what to expect. This is a completely different team than last year with a mix of new and young players. From what I saw last night, I am giveing the Caps a puck and a half in this game (1/2 for home ice advantage calls). The Flyers will need to score at least 4 to win this game, Biron will have to stand on his head again and Huet will have to have anm average or bad game. I just hope the game is as fun to watch as the first 5 (last night was not fun for me) and I still wouldn’t be surprised if the Flyers came through. I’m a strong believer of ebb and flow in a series and with the Flyers playing their worst game of the series last night, the flow tonight should be in their favor.

  6. Mike L Says:

    That game in 1996 hurt a lot mostly because of what transpired that night and afterwards. Consider that in that 4 OT game, one of the Penguins got ejected from the game for jumping Todd Krygier from behind and missed most of the 2nd, all of the 3rd, and all 4 OTs. That player was Mario Lemieux. The Pens winning the game tied the series at 2-2 and the only skater on either team that had something resembling a full tank two nights later was Mario…

    To add injury to insult, with Pat Peake’s injury: He played exactly one game after that injury nearly 2 years later and that was it for his career. I think he skated one shift. When I spoke to him at an event last season, I asked how it was, and he said he’s had over two dozen operations on the foot and ankle, and it still not right. It was as scary an injury as I’ve seen, other than the bloody horrors that Clint Malarchuk and Richard Zednik had… (ironically both former Capitals…)

  7. Dick Says:

    phily voice,

    you are an annoying little terd. can’t you find something better to do with your life than spout off on an opposing teams site? I mean really, get a life dude.

  8. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Sorry Dick. I feel obligated to be here. All of the Caps fans swore I wouldn’t come back to this blog after game 7, but I am a man of my word. Most of them never returned but I’m still here.

  9. Dick Says:

    ok, we got it, yhou came back, whoopdie f’n doo. you are a hero, You now have our permission to leave.

  10. Jason Says:

    hey voice the score was actually 3-2 hockey brain. we said you wouldnt be hare past game 7 if you lost. we all knew full well you would be here if you won. instead of talking shit before the game you post ridiculous shit under other names, then come back to gloat for 2 days after the fact. and then you said goodbye and that you were going to the montreal website….. so….. go

    i think you are afraid you will lose to the habs so you linger where you have already won. will you go the montreal boards if you win there?

  11. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Ok, I’ll leave now. Gotta eat anyway and get ready for the big game tonight. I will stop back tomorrow with my thoughts on tonights game.

  12. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Hi Jason,

    Great to hear from you again. What are you watching tonight? 30 Rock? Can you tape for me? I’ll be watching the game…

  13. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    4-3, 3-2, what’s the difference. A win is a win and I was never much of a stat man. Like I said before I forget about the game after it’s over.

    Look out Habs, Orange Crush is in the house!

  14. Jason Says:

    dont come back tomorrow youre really just a horrible sport nobody here wants anything to do with you.

    i dont care about stats, i just found it funny that you decided to repost something you wrote to reaffirm something that is wrong.

    as far as re-qouting ourselves…i got something for you

    Jason Says:
    April 24, 2008 at 4:45 pm

    instead of talking shit before the game you post ridiculous shit under other names, then come back to gloat for 2 days after the fact. and then you said goodbye and that you were going to the montreal website….. so….. go

    i think you are afraid you will lose to the habs so you linger where you have already won. will you go the montreal boards if you win there?

  15. Jason Says:

    there was never even any reason for you to post on either of the last 2 articles, you just stay here.

    and on this one, i mena really. you just retype a previous post.

    you dont even have anything to say we already know we lost, move on dude

  16. Jason Says:

    oh one thing. do not post your thought on tonights game here. there are both phily and montreal sites for that. we dont care about 2 other teams.

  17. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    My first post on the Montreal blog… Enjoy.

    Hello Habs fans. My name is Philly Voice of Reason. I just moved over hear from the Caps site. I spent a week on there trying to talk sense to Caps fans. I am now here to enlighten you. I’ll start by saying I don’t really know if the Orange Crush will win tonight or Saturday, but they will win one of the first two games. We are fired up and ready to take it to your guys so I hope you are ready for it.

    By the way, what’s the deal with rioting after game 7 of the Boston series.? How about acting like you’ve been there before. After all, it was only the first round, right? Didn’t you guys win the cup a few times? What should we expect the next time that happens?

    Anyway, after that shameful, embarrasing fiasco, I don’t want to hear any bad thing about Philly on here.

    Well about 20 minutes to game time. Gotta go.

  18. painkiller72000 Says:

    PVoR: Buy a Porsche!

  19. Turk in Alaska Says:

    Vogs, was that when Pat Peake went heal first into the boards behind the goal? He never came back after that injury right?


  20. Tom in FL Says:

    I have gotten past rooting against the Flyers just because of their fans. I actually thought the Flyers played a very respectable game. It’s not like we lost to a crappy team. Also, if the Flyers beat Montreal, it tends to make the Caps look better. One hallmark of those old Caps teams was they always seemed to lose to the eventual Cup champion.

    Zetterberg for Detroit just scored on the prettiest give-n-go you could ever see. I lived in Detroit as a kid so rooting for the Wings as the back-up is no problem at all. It just only feels about 10% as good as when your real team wins.

    I am pleased in a strange sort of way that my 22-year-old daughter feels so down. She has joined the fraternity.

    Detroit just scored again. It looked kinda lucky but it’s the kinda luck you get when you are really good.

    Honestly, the Red Wings are the model team for the Caps. They’ve always won just from being better. I rreally hope we can keep Federov around for one more year. I think it would be like having another assistant coach on the team.

    In another weird way I’m almost relieved the Caps lost. It’s like almost the supreme hockey god came down from the iceberg and said we had been given enough for this year and must wait for next year for more.

    My hopes for next year:

    105-110 regular season points
    win the Southeast Division
    win at least the first round of the playoffs
    take the second round to seven games and/or one that one too

    The Cup can wait for the following year.

  21. Tom in FL Says:

    THEY SCORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    One minute left and the refs finally see clear to call a penalty on the Flyers! And Kovalev scores! And it’s overtime! OK, honestly, I’m wanting Montreal! The heck with that, “The Flyers beat us so it looks good for us if they advance” stuff!

    Let’s just say that if tonight’s refs had been there for game 4 or 7, then maybe it would be Caps vs Pens tomorrow night! But we can’t think that way ‘cuz maybe Cornwallis is saying if there’d been a different ref at Yorktown then maybe those soccer players would have won!

    Although I love and respect Benjamin Franklin (especially when he’s adorning my pocket) the rest of Philly can eat my cheesesteak!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Let’s go Habs!

  22. Turk in Alaska Says:

    Tom, seriously dude… you and Philly need to go get a room somewhere so you can mouth kiss and make-up. I don’t see why both of you have to come into every new post Vogs makes and crap all over his blog. Wait, you posted your address before didn’t you? Maybe you guys can hook up and have a tickle fight.

    It’s over, and you guys need to find someplace else to fling your fecal matter. It was funny, now it’s just getting old.

  23. Tom in FL Says:

    Habs win le guerre! Viva le Habs! Sacre bleu! Le refs et too le eyeballs! Penaltee de la est viva le Habs sacre le disc viva le habs viva no surrender!

    Flyers sacre le bosch viva la penaltee sacre morte!

    Viva Napoleon! Viva la red wine! Viva Canadien! Viva la doritos chips because I’m eating them!

    Cheesesteak is la Bosch.

  24. Tom in FL Says:

    Turk: Thanks. I respect your opinion.

    Tom in Florida

    Stop by if you want next year, as I posted my house is open for Caps fans coming through for road games.

  25. Turk in Alaska Says:

    If I find myself in Florida next year I just might! 😉

  26. Philly Voice of Reason Says:

    Well tonights game was the third in four nights and 3 different cities for the Flyers and they still outplayed Montreal. After all the hype I’ve heard about Montreal, I fully expected them to win easily tonight. Based on what I saw, this series should be easier for the Flyers to win than the Caps series. Montreal is supposed to be faster than the Caps but it didn’t seem that way tonight. Montreal is definetly not as big or physical as the Caps. The kneeing call against Richards in last 2 minutes of regulation that led to game tying goal was clearly a shoulder check. Had it not been called, Flyers probably would have won based on the time left. The rest day tomorrow will work well for the Flyers and I’m very optimistic about our chances on Saturday. If we win on Saturday, we will win this series.

  27. Tom in FL Says:

    Turk: Make it a point to get out of Alaska next winter and get a couple weeks in Florida! Even the absolutely worst winter day here is like 60 degrees! Sometimes it is a little colder than that but then this past winter I think I put on the heater for like three nights! One night it was like bitter, bitter cold like maybe 35 at night so I covered my lemon and lime trees with blankets and put the Christmas lights inside the blankets and put the pool thermometer and went out at 4 am to make sure it wasn’t too cold and it was like 40 degrees so the trees were OK. It was a really crappy feeling when they announced the forecast being so cold kinda like when the Caps are down 3-on-5 and then you get the broken stick. Anyway the Flyers got the broken stick tonight when they were already down and it just seemed like this weird karma was involved.

    There’s a Jimi Hendrix special on VH-1 now and it’s really odd but if you think about it Jimi Hendrix was to rock maybe what Alex Ovechkin might end up being to hockey. This is a comparison that maybe very few people can comprehend but I have that feeling nonetheless. It has to do with doing things exceptionally when no one else has ever even done them before.

    Let’s just hope Alex doesn’t take an early game misconduct like Jimi.

  28. Mike L Says:

    What I expect hope for (and realistically expect next year for the Caps):

    1) Out of the gate to not be 6-14-1 again, perhaps something more like 12-6-3 in the first 21.

    2) Establish a lead in the Southeast early in the season and then slowly pull away with a record of 49-25-8, good for 106 points, which would win the Southeast and also win a 1 or 2 seed in the conference. Admittedly, part of that gaudy record would be built upon having more games against Atlanta, Tampa Bay, and Carolina. The only team that appears to be headed in the right direction in the Southeast other than Caps right now is Florida.

    3) Karl Alzner establishes himself as a front-runner for the Calder Trophy.

    4) In the playoffs, the Caps move at least to the conference final to play either Montreal or Pittsburgh. Whether they win or not depends on injuries, and who is in goal

    As for a long term expectation, I fully expect that by 2011, the Caps will have won at least one Stanley Cup.

  29. Jason Says:

    those are very reasonable expectations. if we had started w/ a 12-6-3 this year we would have been 1st in the conf.

    not to mention w/o battling our way into the post season we can be fresher.

    i heard the huet’s are house shopping but wasnt supposed to say anything

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