Chalk up another crazy game in this series between the Caps and Penguins as Washington rallied from a 3-0 deficit. Here are some notes from after the contest:
*Tom Poti did not play in the final 45 minutes because of a groin pull. No word on the severity, but Bruce Boudreau said he was stretching it during every stoppage of play until he was removed.He will be re-examined tomorrow.
*Tomas Fleischmann had the hard hat on after the game. When Bruce Boudreau decided to shuffle his lines, Fleischmann moved up the second line with Michael Nylander and Alexander Semin while Eric Fehr skated with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom on the top unit. Flash, Nylander and Semin all had a goal and an assist, while Fehr ended up with a pair of assists in his season debut.
*Ovechkin and Boudreau had plenty of praise for Matt Bradley, who went to the dressing room for stitches after his fight with Paul Bissonnette but would return in the third period.
“It takes a lot of courage when you don’t get the best of a fight and he’s out there blocking shots and playing if as nothing happened with stitches and a cut nose,” Boudreau said. “We really commended him for having the courage to come back. When guys see that, how can you sit there and not give it your all when the other guy is begging to come back and play?”
*Ovechkin didn’t have any points for the second straight game and third time in four, but the Caps still have 17 goals in four games. Offensive depth is not an issue for this team, which is a 180-degree change from the beginning of last season.
*Ovechkin seemed to spending too much time worrying about hitting Evgeni Malkin and didn’t put a shot on net until there was 45 seconds left in the second period. He had four more in the third, and Boudreau said he was trying to keep Ovechkin’s line away from Malkin’s so he wouldn’t focus on hitting his Russian “friend.”
“When Pittsburgh and Washington play they have their own little inter-war,” Boudreau said. “Maybe sometimes you do get focused on doing one thing.”
*Don’t know if it was on camera at the end of the game, but Ovechkin and Crosby met at center ice after the game and had to be restrained. Needless to say they weren’t discussing post-game dinner plans. Crosby set up the first two goals of the game, but was also a non-factor in the third period and finished as a minus-3.