Capitals 6, Canadiens 5 OT
WHEW! I don't know about anybody else, but I'm out of breath after last night's game. I swear this team is trying to kill me! Say what you want about the Caps, but boring, they ain't. That had to be one of the greatest games I've seen in a while....or at least partially.
Yes I have to admit it...I turned the damn thing OFF after that fourth goal. Not that I was feeling too good after the second goal. I'm sure there are a lot of other Caps fans watching that felt the same way. So I went upstairs and called it a night, lamenting to Mrs. Blueliner about what happened. She looked at me like I was crazy. Our conversation went something like this:
"How come you're not watching the game?"
"Because it's now 4-1. It is over."
"Well how much time is left?"
"About a period and a half."
"Plenty of time...they've come back before."
"Yeah but, dear this is the PLAYOFFS....that kind of thing doesn't happen in the playoffs." Looking back, I feel pretty stupid for saying that, simply because I have an overdeveloped knowledge of hockey history. For the best example of such, I give you the following:
So anyway, I go back downstairs after about 25 minutes for something to drink. Just out of nothing else but morbid curiosity, I turn on the game again. Comcast just happened to have their cavalcade of commercials on. I figured it was intermission, so I waited (and waited) through that. Finally the game came back up---it was indeed intermission, only the score was 4-2. Apparently, Nicklas Backstrom had scored while I was away. I started to feel even more like an ass when I saw the replay. So I figured I'd stick around and give it another shot.
Little did I know what I was in for.
So, three minutes in Ovechkin pounds one in to make it 4-3. I'm finding myself paying more attention at that point, obviously. I have to apologize if I'm coming off as jaded here, but I've seen this team collapse too many times in the postseason to get my hopes up too high. But right then and there I decided to make the commitment to stick it out whatever the outcome. Seven minutes later, Backstrom gets his second to tie it up! Who says this is a one-man team? So ten minutes to go and anything can happen. The play begins to slow up a bit and I'm thinking, "OK here we go again to OT." Not a minute after that the slippery SOB Tomas Jagr, er Plekanec slides one in with two minutes left. I wanted to turn it off and go back upstairs but I figured one goal down with two minutes to go is a heck of a lot better than several down. And that's when the magic REALLY happened.
The clock is winding down. I'm losing hope and thinking, "well at least they can say they battled back and carry that into Game Three." It's getting close to pulling Varley (the goalie) and making one last rush. I'm looking and I hear Joe Beninati say that AO had been slashed and the ref's arm had gone up. Okay this is cool, we get to end the game on a power play. Although it can also be bad because the other team can just fling it down the other end towards your empty net. So Backstrom picks up the puck and darts across the red line. What's this? The Montreal defense is LETTING him across? All right, fine...we'll take it. He crosses into the zone and dumps to John Carlson, who trailed the play. Carlson takes two steps to his right and lets a zinger go towards Halak...AND IT'S IN! I hear a voice from upstairs, "Gee honey, I take it they tied it up again?"
I'm out of my seat...but there's a catch. There's over a minute left to go and anything, and I mean anything, can happen. Fortunately the last ticks of the clock go by without too much of an incident. I collapse into my chair and turn towards my computer, oblivious to the tired collage of commercials. Fifteen minutes later they drop the puck to begin again. OT again in two games? Yeah...too unreal. Backstrom loses the faceoff, but Les Bleu, Blanc et Rouge do nothing with it. So Nicklas grabs the puck, crosses the line again and this time he lets a wrister go...AND HE SCORES!
If the wife was asleep, I'm sure I woke her up with the yell I let out. I swear I saw it happen a few times in the regular season but I never thought it would happen in the playoffs. It took a good half-hour for me to calm down after that. So when I finally went upstairs to call it a night, the wife gave it to me good--she let me know what a jackass I was for doubting. Happily, I have to say, as she is a lot of the time, she was right.