The Capitals were lucky to get out of HSBC Arena tonight with a point, as the Sabres defeated Washington 3-2 in overtime on a Thomas Vanek goal.
The Caps opened the scoring with a bomb off the stick of Karl Alzner after Alexander Semin collected a flubbed clearing attempt by the Sabres and dished it to the wide-open rookie on the point. The Sabres would find their equalizer of the stick of Steve Montador halfway through the second frame off a similar play, as the top line failed to clear the puck and suffered the consequences. The Sabres took the lead five minutes later on a power play goal by Thomas Vanek after Tom Fleischmann was sent off for one of three double minors the Caps would take on the night. The visitors battled hard in the third period, but were continually denied by Ryan Miller, who made his return after missing six games. But the Caps were eventually rewarded, as Jason Chimera found Nick Backstrom alone in the slot, who ripped a shot bar down on Miller to equalize for the Capitals. After Backstrom took another high sticking double minor, the Caps were able to kill off the ensuing power play into overtime; however, Vanek struck again with exactly one minute left in the extra frame as he dangled through the entire Washington defense and deposited a backhander into the cage for the game-winner.
A really lackluster game by the Caps. They lacked production from their top line and looked out of sorts all night. Better get the ship righted quickly, with a contest tomorrow afternoon.
Braden Holtby was great. The rookie was the reason the Caps were able to salvage a point out of the contest. Holtby looked calm and made several spectacular glove saves throughout the game to keep his team in it.
Caps are right back at it tomorrow in DC as they welcome the Thrashers to Verizon Center. Game time is scheduled for 5 P.M.
Welcome to Caps 'Round the Clock, a blog covering the Washington Capitals and the NHL. In season, I update the Blog after every practice and on game day with Caps news and information, and then provide a recap and analysis after each contest. I also write a periodical Prospect Watch and weekly feature pieces on the state of the Men in Red and other things Capitals. And of course, I will post videos and tidbits from around the League and offer my two cents as the season wears on. In the offseason, I write a Report Card for each player, and will keep you updated on all the news about the Caps through the summer. I'm glad you're here, and hope you come back!