NHL postseason history is littered with the broken dreams of teams who lost lengthy overtime games. That being said, there are exceptions to the rule and if something unusual were to happen, the consistently weird 2012 playoffs would be the right time for that to occur.
The Washington Capitals fell to the New York Rangers 2-1 in triple overtime tonight and fell behind 2-1 in the series as well. For some, the series might as well be over, yet Braden Holtby ranks among the many who aren’t convinced.
A question of fatigue
If you ask me, the series could change on a dime if the Capitals win in Game 4 for a simple reason: fatigue. As you’ll see from this post and the box score, only one Washington player passed the 40-minute mark (Dennis Wideman). Contrast that with four New York defensemen (including Ryan McDonagh, who logged a ridiculous 53-plus minutes) and even one forward (Ryan Callahan) who passed 40 minutes and it’s not crazy to say that Washington might have a shot if this series goes long.
“The number of [cocaine] positives are more than they were in previous years and they’re going up,” Daly said. “I wouldn’t say it’s a crisis in any sense. What I’d say is drugs like cocaine are cyclical and you’ve hit a cycle where it’s an ‘in’ drug again.”
Daly said that he’d be surprised “if we’re talking more than 20 guys” and then touched on something that may be a problem: they don’t test it in a “comprehensive way.”
As Katie Strang’s essential ESPN article about the Los Angeles Kings’ tough season explored in June, there are some challenges for testing for a drug like cocaine. That said, there are also some limitations that may raise some eyebrows.
For one, it metabolizes quickly. Michael McCabe, a Philadelphia-based toxicology expert who works for Robson Forensic, told ESPN.com that, generally speaking, cocaine filters out of the system in two to four days, making it relatively easy to avoid a flag in standard urine tests.
The NHL-NHLPA’s joint drug-testing program is not specifically designed to target recreational drugs such as cocaine or marijuana. The Performance Enhancing Substances Program is put into place to do exactly that — screen for performance-enhancing drugs.
So, are “party drugs” like cocaine and molly an issue for the NHL?
At the moment, the answer almost seems to be: “the league hopes not.”
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.