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About Last Night: Capitals 5, Panthers 4

Florida came back from two goal deficits on two different occasions but fell to Washington.

Friday, 02.28.2014 / 10:50 AM ET / News
By "Hockey Pat" McGrath  - FloridaPanthers.com
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About Last Night: Capitals 5, Panthers 4
Florida came back from two goal deficits on two different occasions but fell to Washington.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT is the morning-after recap of last night’s Florida Panthers game produced by “Hockey Pat” McGrath, a lifelong Cats fan who previously wrote for the Florida Panthers themed blog “TheRatTrick”. It is a followup to Hockey Pat’s hilariously informative gameday article: THE LOWDOWN.

The contents of ABOUT LAST NIGHT and all opinions expressed therein are solely those of Hockey Pat and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Florida Panthers or Sunrise Sports & Entertainment LLC. Having said that, if you find yourself laughing or smiling as you read ABOUT LAST NIGHT, feel free to thank us. We accept thank you notes, tweets and ticket purchases.

CAPITALS 5, PANTHERS 4

Cheer up, it’s Friday:

The Florida Panthers and the Washington Capitals put on a show at BB&T Center last night in both teams’ first game back since the Olympic break. The back and forth game had the Capitals leading 4-2 heading into the third period but the Panthers made a spirited comeback to tie the game at four midway through the final stanza. Unfortunately Florida could not hold on as Alex Ovechkin scored his league leading 41st goal of the season with less than five minutes left to put Washington up for good.

The 5-4 loss may not have been the desired result but that’s okay, I’m not going to let it get me down. We have plenty of reasons to smile today; it’s Friday, the Panthers have a packed March with 17 games, an exciting trade deadline is just around the corner and Game of Thrones starts back up in 49 days.

Before we completely move on, let’s take a brief look at what you may have missed from last night.

Play of the Game: Thomas robs Green

It is fair to say that Tim Thomas is not the most conventional goalie in the world. With his unique style, Thomas has the ability to make plays that you would rarely see from any other goalie in the league. This was in evidence last night when Thomas robbed Capitals defenseman Mike Green on a breakaway. Check out the video:

The save, along with the new headgear Thomas was rocking caused quite a stir on twitter…

Fun with twitter

Tweet of the game:

Always nice to see the Celebs coming out….

Olympic impact

In yesterday’s pre-game Lowdown, I took a few shots at Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom for the way their respective Olympics came to an end. The duo made me eat my words with their performance on the ice last night as they each tallied a goal and two assists. Ovechkin’s goal came with just 4:17 left in the game and proved to be the game winner. Maybe next time I will just keep my mouth shut.

Ovi Defensive Breakdown

Onnnnn the other hand, if you have ever wondered how Ovechkin can be leading the league in goals yet still be a -17 check out this highlight of Brad Boyes’ third period goal.

From :05-:08 we see Ovechkin do a slow, flat-footed loop towards his defensive blue-line. At this point it looks like the Caps may have gained possession of the puck so it makes sense that the offensive thinking Ovechkin would be looking towards the other end of the ice. The Caps however turn the puck over and who should end up with the goal? Brad Boyes, the player Ovechkin left uncovered as he glided towards the neutral-zone.

Boyes’ goal tied the game 4-4 until Ovechkin scored the game winner about six minutes later, his 41st goal of the season. So….I guess the lesson here is, as long as Ovi keeps putting up the G’s, he can get away with shirking away a few of his defensive responsibilities.

Tripping off the Power

In my “10 Questions” for the rest of the season I mentioned the Panthers’ power play as an area to watch. The Cats got things off to a good start last night as they managed to find the back of the net on one of their man-advantages.

The Panthers came out with a bit of a different look as the team had big 6’6” Jimmy Hayes posted up in front of the net screening Braden Holtby. The change worked out as Drew Shore got a power play goal firing the puck through Hayes’ legs and past a visually impaired Holtby to bring the Cats to within 4-3.

Hayes did not receive an assist on the play but his presence in front of the net was the key to the goal.

On a side note, Shore was my selection for last night’s “Young Gun” Lead Pipe Lock of the Night, so this is me patting myself on the back.

Two for Baby Boyes

Brad Boyes and his wife recently welcomed a new baby into the family and what did the proud father do last night? He went out and scored two goals (his 16th and 17th of the season). The pair of goals gave Boyes 28 points on the season and helped him leapfrog over Scottie Upshall for the team scoring lead. Boyes’ two goals in honor of his new baby is the most impressive sports performance for a little’un since Kramer and Paul O’Neil.

That about wraps things up for Panthers-Capitals. The Cats will be on the road for a back-to-back this weekend against the Blue Jackets and the Islanders before stopping in Boston on Tuesday. Enjoy your weekends everybody, we’ll still be here when you get back.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - MTL 77 47 22 8 203 174 102
2 x - NYR 75 47 21 7 228 177 101
3 x - TBL 77 47 23 7 249 201 101
4 PIT 76 42 23 11 210 190 95
5 NYI 77 45 27 5 235 215 95
6 DET 75 40 23 12 220 206 92
7 WSH 76 41 25 10 223 188 92
8 BOS 76 38 25 13 201 196 89
9 OTT 75 37 26 12 218 203 86
10 FLA 76 35 26 15 190 207 85
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 75 36 35 4 207 232 76
13 NJD 76 31 33 12 168 194 74
14 CAR 75 28 36 11 174 204 67
15 TOR 76 28 42 6 198 244 62
16 BUF 76 21 47 8 148 255 50

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Huberdeau 73 13 36 9 49
N. Bjugstad 72 24 19 -7 43
J. Jagr 71 15 26 -2 41
J. Jokinen 75 8 33 -2 41
B. Boyes 73 12 23 10 35
A. Ekblad 75 11 24 11 35
J. Hayes 66 18 13 -5 31
A. Barkov 65 14 17 -1 31
B. Campbell 76 3 22 2 25
B. Pirri 43 20 2 5 22
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 26 17 12 .921 2.33
A. Montoya 5 7 2 .888 3.08
 
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