Ah, the home opener for the Washington Capitals was finally here! A sea of red clad, rabid fans had been waiting a long time for the team to return to the ice at Verizon Center after a long – too long – hiatus.
Funny thing was how healthy and rested the players looked. They looked groomed, and some had tans? Big contrast to game 7 of the playoffs last year, when they were banged up, bearded, hollow-eyed, pale and drained.
Well, it’s a new season, and this one starts like the last ones:
Some differences though:
- Neuvirth in net – not bad, started out shaky but righted himself. But what about Varly? not a good sign that he starts the season hurt, I mean, “not 100%”
- Rookies in key positions – do #74 Carlson and #27 Alzner really count as rookies still? MJ90 centering the third line and looking (mostly) good
- Fighting – and I don’t mean just Bradley either. By the time the fighting cleared, there were only 10 players or so left on the Caps bench
- Multi-point games for multiple players. Basically, if you didn’t get a point and/or a fight this game, then what are you doing taking up a roster spot?
Where does this leave us? Has the team answered all the questions from last Spring’s early and unceremonious booting from the payoffs? We shall see. In the meantime, the quest to bring the Cup to Verizon begins … Let’s go Caps!