Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Lightning Are Back In Town

An odd note that I came across on the internets last night. Apparently, the ice in Tampa wasn't going to be ready for the morning skate because the circus just left town. Which led to the following twitter comment from JaspersRink (a Caps centric blog):

Circus has been in town since Koules/Barrie took over. RT @TarikElBashir Ice might not be ready for the AM skate. Circus was just in town.

One of the few comments on twitter that made me laugh out loud.

With that being said the Caps do roll into town led, as always, by their new captain Alexander Ovechkin. There will be a lot of pressure on the Lightning blue line to contain the Russian sniper and his cast of secondary scorers.

Not only is the offense on a role it looks like they have a stable netminder in rookie Michal Neuvirth. The AHL playoff MVP from last season has stepped in for the injured Semyon Varlamov and posted a 5-2 record with a .928 saver percentage in his last 7 games.

His play has been so exceptional that veteran netminder Jose Theodore has become expendable and his name is starting to pop up in trade rumors. With Varalamov hoping to be back soon it appears the Caps will go down the stretch with two youngsters in the net.

Of course the looming stat for this matchup is that the Caps have beaten the Lightning 12 straight games. In this day and age that's a ridiculesly long losing streak.

So how do the Lightning win? It's not nuclear science. Stay out of the penalty box, back check, limit the bad passes, shoot often, play responsible in the defensive zone. That's it, that's all there is.

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