Alexander Semin’s answer didn’t really come in words as part of an interview through interpreter Dmitry Chesnokov. His answer to being a healthy scratch earlier in the week came 5:23 into the Capitals’ win over the Winnipeg Jets, a wrist shot past Ondrej Pavelec.
Semin played 18:25 and was a plus-2 player Wednesday night. Was he motivated by being in the press box earlier in the week?
“Of course I wanted to win. I wanted to play great,” Semin said. “But at the same time I don’t think I changed anything. I just played my game, went out there and played exactly like I did before the game.”
Even beyond the wicked wrister created from an Alex Ovechkin pass, drew understated praise from his coach when asked about being pleased with Semin’s game.
“Yes. Very much,” coach Bruce Boudreau said. “I thought he played a really good game.”
Asked about this being perhaps his best game of the season, Semin gave thanks for snapping his seven-game stretch with minor penalties.
“It’s actually not important whether it was my best game or not,” he said. “The most important thing is that we won. And I’m just happy that I didn’t pick up a penalty.”
Semin and the rest of the Caps. He has 14 minor penalties this season, by far most on the team. Boudreau said the seven straight games with penalties made the decision to scratch him.
At least one teammate was proud of how Semin responded.
“It’s huge. It shows his character. No one likes to sit out. I know when I sit out I’m pretty pissed off,” Jason Chimera said. “It’s good for him. You could see he had a little more jump in his step tonight, which is great to see. I think that was his best game of the year because he skated, he hustled, he made some big hits and kept pucks going.
“There was no turnovers. He kept the puck deep the whole time, which is great. So kudos to him. He had a great comeback game and it’s good to see.”