Henrik Lundqvist’s foe at the other end of the ice changed, but the result does not. “King Henrik” proved it didn’t matter who started in goal for the Washington Capitals today, because he would have beaten either of them.
Now the Caps are starting at an 0-2 defecit and the scene shifts to Madison Square Garden on Monday for Game 3. There have been 37 teams come back from an 0-2 hole, but few have lost the first two games at home.
On to some notes/quotes from the aftermath here at the Phone Booth:
* Neither Bruce Boudreau nor Varlamov offered any details about how or why or when the coach decided to make the switch. Boudreau also didn’t say who start Monday in Manhattan, but it is hard to imagine that it wouldn’t be Varlamov (though it was hard to imagine it wasn’t going to be Theodore in this game).
* Boudreau said his team “got frustrated” in the second period, and he addressed it during the intermission and the team re-focused. The Caps clearly spent too much time worrying about getting in extra shoves after the whistle and the officiating in the middle period instead of trying to score a goal.
* Alex Ovechkin had a great chance with six minutes left but hit the crossbar. Otherwise, it was a pretty quiet game for him. It was his pass that was defelected and led to the only goal of the game.
Both he and Alexander Semin seemed to be having trouble controlling the puck at different points.
* Speaking of Semin, he took two offensive zone penalties and wasn’t much of a factor. Viktor Kozlov missed an open net early in the game and also took two penalties. It wasn’t a great day for Russians, or at least for the ones of legal drinking age.
* Varlamov said he was nervous, but “not like in Montreal for my NHL debut when my hands were shaking.” He also said the delay to start the game (because one of the nets wouldn’t sit properly on its moorings) bothered him a bit.
* Boudreau said he felt Ovechkin was interfered with when he tried to get back on the Rangers goal.
* This is the first 1-0 playoff loss in franchise history.