a disappointing end to a pretty good game and a fantastic season. there's a tonne that could be said, but i dont have the stomach to engage in a full blown postmortem and can offer only a few thoughts:
- obviously i didnt like the call on kapanen's goal much. i understand the nhl's rationale and justification of the call, but the play looks awfully similar to one that went against the caps in the last regular season game of the season where fleishman hit a tampa defender into ramo. if the right call was made according to the rulebook, i think the rule book needs to be at least revisited with respect to two issues. 1) a player has to make an effort to not to make contact with an opposing goalie, so shouldnt a player have to make an effort to not make contact with an opposing player when such contact will reasonably, if not obviously, create contact with an opposing goalie? isnt this at least something we need to think about? is there that much of a practical difference from thoresen running over huet in that context and thoresen running over mossison who, thoresen knows, will then hit huet? 2) this is the kind of play that probably needs to be reviewable. i am hell bent against expanding video review to penalties or offsides or icings, etc, an idea that is so preposterously dumb that even the good folks at the nhl are not likely to consider it. but when we're talking about whether or not a goal was scored, im not sure i see a distinction between revieweing whether or not the puck crossed the line (or was kicked in or knocked in with a highstick, etc) and reviewing whether or not goalie interference occurred on the play.
- you cant complain too much on the poti call. obv the refs put away the whistle in the third (a move i agree with) and once the caps got away with the erskine non-call, they almost had to call poti. i think both plays were trips, the difference being that erskine did what he did to prevent a 2 on 1. poti had no reason to get so aggressive there, he was in good position, the caps were in no danger. but poti played great all year and all series, so what can you do. tough break for a seemingly good guy.
- caps came out and dominated early which they needed to do. 5 on 3 goal, long stretches of domination in the phi zone, including a mammoth shift by the fourth line against the richards and timonen group. that was a huge shift, one of those where it's only a matter of time before the flyers take a penalty. wash was able to change forwards with the puck still in the zone. boudreau would have done well to get ov's line out against a tired phi group. instead, as he never seems to do clever li'l matchup things like that, he put backstrom and semin out there. semin ends up taking a very lazy and stupid hooking penalty as the puck exits the offensive zone, and the flyers, of course, score on the ensuing pp. the game changed from that point. fucking semin. gotta take the good with the bad i guess.
- ovechkin must have had nightmares of that glorious chance he had in the slot before dishing off to an unlooking federov. wow, that's a great place to shoot when you're the best sniper in the game.
- one has to imagine that slava bykov has already called ov begging him to be on the national team for the world championships next month. ov's gotta be pretty spent at this point, but i imagine it'll be tough to say no, especially given the number of quality russians ruled ineligible to play.
- interesting decisions remain regarding some of the team's ufa's (huet and federov) and rfa's (green and eminger), as well as what the deal with varlamov is. should be a fairly busy offseason for mcphee and the team, but one that at least can justifiably be viewed with optimism for the future.