Washington Capitals v Philadelphia Flyers

Discuss: Flyers hold on despite Capitals’ comeback attempt


The Philadelphia Flyers had the lead all night, never relinquished it, but a third-period comeback by the Washington Capitals sure made for an interesting finish.

The Flyers managed to hold on for a 6-4 victory over the visiting Capitals on Wednesday on NBCSN, moving into sole possession of second in the Metropolitan Division. The Capitals remain fifth in the same division.

Let’s discuss:

  • What a wild third period that was. The two teams combined for five goals, with Washington scoring three times to make it a one-goal game, providing for an exciting finish in the final meeting of the season between these division rivals.
  • It’s become clear this season that these two teams do not like each other. A line brawl broke out in the first period of tonight’s game. Shame they don’t play each other again this season.
  • Alex Ovechkin hasn’t hit the 50-goal mark since the 2009-10 season. On Wednesday, he scored his 44th of the season. Looking like he’ll get back to the half-century mark once again.
  • Still on the Ovechkin front: He threw a massive hit on Flyers’ forward Michael Raffl in the second period. Perhaps a high hit, too?
  • Not a great night for goalies. Philadelphia’s Steve Mason gave up four goals on just 25 shots. Braden Holtby was pulled in the second period for Washington, giving up four goals on 18 shots.
  • Quite a night for Claude Giroux. He had a three-point night, including a pair of goals and now has 11 points in his last seven games.

GM says Blue Jackets are ‘off the rails’ right now

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On Monday, PHT discussed the Columbus Blue Jackets’ troubling start, even if it felt like it may be too early to raise concerns.

Apparently Blue Jackets management is a little shaken by the second 0-3-0 start in franchise history, however.

Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen shared his shock and dismay with the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline on Tuesday.

“I’m surprised how, in just five days, we’ve gone from a very confident group to something that’s the opposite of that,” Kekalainen told The Dispatch on Tuesday. “Our confidence, our game … it’s off the rails right now.

Maybe losing to the Buffalo Sabres stings a little bit extra?

Kekalainen said “there’s no excuse for how we played in Buffalo,” pointing out that every team in the NHL is a “good team.”

Indeed, just about every squad boasts some dangerous weapons if they catch an opponent sleeping.

Portzline goes deeper on Columbus’ recent history of stumbling out of the gate, but consider the foreboding stretch coming up.

Next four games: Three out of four at home
Eight games following that: Seven out of eight on the road.

As you can see, winter is coming for Columbus, so they best get things together. All things considered, this is the right time for a wake-up call.

For bonus chuckles, here’s a photo of Kekalainen on a railing.

via AP

Personal reasons: No Ovechkin for Caps tonight

Alex Ovechkin
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Alex Ovechkin won’t play for the Washington Capitals on Tuesday because of personal reasons, the team confirmed.

He entered the building considerably later than usual, but his presence at least opened the door for the possibility of No. 8 suiting up against the San Jose Sharks.

Instead, the Capitals will face the hot-starting Sharks without Ovechkin (personal reasons) and Nicklas Backstrom (injury).

That’s a tall order, yet it’s also an opportunity for Barry Trotz to prove his system is a difference-maker … and that the Capitals have the young players to take up the mantle when the big stars are out

This is how Washington’s forward lines may look tonight:

No, the Capitals have not shared details regarding what his “personal reasons” might be, by the way.