The Washington Capitals looked stylish for their big outdoor game against the Carolina Hurricanes. But they played terribly. They were methodically dismantled by a superior team in front of 56,961 fans, a national television audience, and a clown named Jake Owen.
Two minutes into the game, the Canes scored with their first shot: a deflection from Jesperi Kotkaniemi. The Canes scored three in the second half, starting with Paul Stastny alone up front, in the middle with Martin Necas in power and ending with Teuvo Teravainen on the run.
The Caps played apocalyptically poorly in the third quarter, but Tom Wilson got a no-angle goal to break the shutout.
Caps lose 4-1. Awful.
capitals appearing in the stadium pic.twitter.com/kRWndMt2Oq
— nice tweet pete 🌮 (@peterhassett) February 18, 2023
- Wow, those t-shirts sure looked good. Much better than the one in Carolina, where the numbers on the jersey were not readable on television. I didn’t like their helmets either.
- What else non-game related can I talk about? Oh the dog. The dog was great.
WHAT A PUP DROP 🐶 @RipkenTheBatDog crushed! #SeriesStadium
🇺🇸: @ESPNPlus ➡️ https://t.co/LLngxnSfEF
🇨🇦: @Sportsnet ➡️ https://t.co/cfcKyr3OOi #NHLonSN pic.twitter.com/WCppPVCECB
-NHL (@NHL) February 19, 2023
- People often say:we don’t deserve dogs”, but they are wrong. We invented dogs. We saw big, scary wolves and for ten thousand years or whatever we turned them into pugs. We deserve dogs.
- Jake Owen? More like Jake NO-wen Pimp of two names.
- well ok I give up. Hockey bullets now. The Caps weren’t massively outshot in the first half, but they couldn’t generate good chances up front. The offense is still absent.
- The Caps had a good chance on a power play once when dylan stromewho doesn’t normally play to man advantage, made some noise in the paint.
- Matt Irwin he lost his man on Kotkaniemi’s goal. nick jensen lost all object permanence in the Stastny goal.
- tom wilson he returned to action after missing seven games with a lower-body injury. He scored the third of his season (only nine games) from the top line, which was the best line on the team.
- Unlike the Johansson-Backstrom-Sheary second line, who were abysmal, unplayable, execrable, vehicular clown, rear end, post-Cliff Metallica, bad.
- Ian posted a story earlier about how the Caps said they were going to win this game for Ovechkin and all. “We want to get a win for our captain, for O.” They failed spectacularly. If I were Ovechkin, I would be insulted by this effort.
- When a team is trailing, you generally expect them to control the game better and have more offense, a combination of their desperation and the other team’s conservative play. Instead, Washington played just as poorly in the third quarter, just endless cascades of misses in the one zone Carolina allowed them to play. You have to hope they just give up, because if that’s what they look like when I’m trying, they’re garbage.
@rmnb a belichickian look pic.twitter.com/ofCQGQYfuk
— Mateo Kory (@mattymatty2000) February 19, 2023
The Hurricanes simply outperformed the Capitals, but even when you account for the huge gap in available talent, the Capitals still underperformed. Even his healthy lines, unaffected by absences, were terrible. Even if their expectations were already low, the team went lower. This was a total collective failure. It was a terrible hockey game. I am diminished by having seen it. I am a sadder and smaller man than three hours ago.
The excellent Athletic reporter Tarik El-Bashir he said this “was supposed to be a big week in terms of helping general manager Brian MacLellan figure out what direction to go at the deadline.” The Caps lost every game, most in humiliating fashion, none worse than tonight. There are two directions the team could go at the deadline, and the other is wrong.
headline photo: @kkmortier