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Washington Capitals

Take Your Time Ovechkin

Washington CapitalsAlex Ovechkin is listed as questionable for the weekend games against Minnesota and New Jersey, but do the Caps urgently need him back? Without him the Caps are 3-1-0 and, despite a loss to the Devils in the first Ovechkinless game, have looked pretty good.

One of the key questions was whether Alex Semin would step up in the absence of Ovie, as he seemed to be the natural replacement. However the Russian was poor through the first three games, recording no points and was criticised for taking three silly penalties in the Devils game. And although he showed great improvement in Wednesday night’s shootout win over the Islanders, with two goals, one after just eight seconds, Semin did not played as well as was hoped.

With Ovechkin out, the Capitals’ defense was expected to tighten up, but the team continued in their offensive mentality, and it worked, emphatically highlighted by the 7-4 win over the Panthers at Verizon Center. The games without Ovechkin have also shown team’s point-scoring depth when needed. Rookie Mathieu Perreault who was called up from Hershey managed a goal and two assists, and Thomas Fleischmann has provided a few goals having only recently returned from injury.

It has really been more a case of the more fringe players stepping up in Ovechkin’s absence, than any of the Caps’ other stars, as they see a chance to, like Perreault did, grab the headlines. So the signs are good in Washington as we top the conference despite playing four games without our top player, and even if he is not back for the weekend games, I will still be confident of the Capitals pulling another couple of wins out of the bag.

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One comment for “Take Your Time Ovechkin”

  1. I have been quite impressed with how Washington has performed without Ovechkin. Honestly, I thought you would see them slump a little. That’s a good sign for all the Cap fans.

    Posted by pittpenNo Gravatar | November 13, 2009, 8:28 pm

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