Today begins our daily Hershey Bears Spotlight, the newest addition to the blog. We know you all are already going through withdrawals after yesterday’s final day of Caps Dev Camp so we decided to give you some more information on the guys from camp that will be heading to Hershey for the first time this season as well as those returning from the previous season.
First up we have one of our personal favorites here at FiCP; Connor Hobbs who played defense wearing #7 for the Bears since last season. Connor was drafted in the fifth round of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft #143 overall and continued to play for the Regina Pats in Canada for two more seasons following the draft.
In total Connor played for the Pats for three seasons before coming to the Bears; breaking multiple records during his time there including goals in a single season by a Pats defenseman and points in a single season by a defenseman in the WHL.
Connor is a hard hitting guy who throws his body around in all the right ways and has the speed to get him where he needs to be. To us he is the Tom Wilson of defenseman. Last season he posted 61 minutes in penalties, accompanied by three goals and 13 assists Impressive for a defenseman in his first season with the AHL. These numbers do not truly reflect his abilities though due to a wrist injury that sidelined Hobbs for seven weeks.
We expect to see Connor again for training camp in September as he demonstrates his abilities with the full Caps team.
This game was a little dull at points, making Caps fans wonder if this would be a night of celebration or another disappointment. As you know by now the Caps pulled out a 3-0 victory over the Canucks and Braden Holtby played a huge part in that. He was Stellar in net and looked more solid than in his past few appearances. Goals came from the likes of Ovechkin, Williams, and Wilson. Holtby earned his 25th NHL shutout,
By now you all know how much we love our photos here at FiCP, but sometimes we have a few too many photos to put into a gallery on the site. That being said we have decided to share our galleries via Flickr! We are so excited to share all our wonderful photos with you in a simpler format that everyone can view, even from their phones.
Please leave us feedback, we would love to know what you think we can do to improve or any other photos you might like to see. We will be moving all our previous galleries to the Flickr page this coming week and we hope you will enjoy taking a look back at this season’s best photos as much as we do.
As always feel free to use any of our photos and share with everyone if you like what you see.
Thank you to everyone for the continued support, we would be nowhere without you all.
First Things First: Celebrating Alex Ovechkin; Family Matters
On January 14th, the boys were back at it. After having a few days off, the Washington Capitals took on the Vancouver Canucks at the Verizon Center. The Great 8 was honored with a pregame ceremony dedicated to reaching his 500 NHL goal plataeu. A video of NHL greats and Hall of Fame inductees saying kind words of congratulations and encouragment was shown before Ted Leonsis presented Ovi with a gold hockey stick engraved with his career milestones on the shaft and his historical 500th goal on the blade. Ovi’s mother and father were on the ice with him for this special occasion, along with his fiance Nastya Shubskaya. Yet again, the Verizon Center erupted with applause and cheers for Ovi. After an awesome moment for the Ovechkin family, there was still a game to be played…ON TO THE FIRST PERIOD!Continue reading “Caps-Canucks Win: Crazy for Kuzya”
The Washington Capitals came back home from a nail biting overtime victory in Madison Square Garden to take on the Ottawa Senators at the Verizon Center. After a beautiful save from Braden Holtby in conjunction with Nate Schmidt, Alex Ovechkin was all too happy to end the game on his own terms and bring the Caps home with the victory and 2 points. After scoring goals 498 and 499 in New York, everyone knew how important this next game could be to Ovi and Capitals history.
In the chase…
On the edge of his milestone 500th NHL goal, Ovi was shooting pucks galore! He had 7 shots on goal in the first period alone. However, he just could not get the puck into the back of the net. Caps fans did still get to celebrate, though. Here is how the first period shook out:
-Justin Williams scored his 13th goal of the season, assisted by Andre Burakovsky. Not to be outdone, TJ Oshie got one past Andrew Hammond for his 15th of the season. Oshie converted on the powerplay thanks to an assist from Evgeny Kuznetsov.
-Bobby Ryan was the first to be called for a penalty, being whistled for interference. This penalty would end up leading to the Caps second goal of the evening. During a face
off, Tom Wilson and Max McCormick get matching unsportsmanlike conduct penalties with McCormick getting an addtional two minutes for roughing. Dmitry Orlov would also be called for a cross-check and Ovi got caught hooking.
-Caps lead 2-0
Oh Captain! My Captain…
With a few seconds left on the Ottawa powerplay, the Caps started the second period a man down. Just as the penalty to Ovechkin expired, Nicklas Backstrom got the puck and tossed it up to Ovi who was exiting the penalty box. As the crowd rose to their feet, Ovi shot the puck and PING!! He hit crossbar. A few more penalties were committed by both sides. The last infraction was by Mark Stone, who was called for tripping. Caps to the powerplay! You can feel it. This is it! In front of his home crowd, Alex Ovechkin blasted one past Hammond. There it is. NHL career goal number 500. The Verizon Center erupts!! Alex is swarmed by his teammates as the entire Caps bench empties onto the ice, nearly crushing a referee in the process.
History has been made. The Great 8 becomes the 43rd player in NHL history to score 500 goals and also the 5th fastest player to do so. You can breathe now…
Here is how the rest of the second period looked:
-Mike Hoffman got Ottawa on the board with his 20th goal of the season, unassisted. Zach Sill collected his own garbage to get his first goal as a Washington Capital and second of his career. Dmitry Orlov got his 4th of the season, assisted by Nate Schmidt. Closing out the second period was Alex Ovechkin and his 500th NHL goal. This was also Ovi’s 25th goal of the season.
-Dmitry Orlov was called for holding and Mark Stone was called for tripping.
-Caps lead 5-1
After a barrage of goals in the second period, my 7 year old godson decided to be the peanut gallery stating that “Otto-pilot is just not working…” As the third period commenced, you could see that this was still the trend for the Senators. A few minutes into the third, Tom Wilson decided he wanted in on the action and ripped one past Hammond. Not long after, Ovi decided “Why stop now?” and scored his second of the night. As the final minute wound down, the Caps faithful cheered and stood for a standing ovation to salute their beloved team. A fairly quiet period (on the ice anyways), here is how the 3rd looked:
-Tom Wilson got his 3rd of the season, assisted by Jason Chimera. Ovi scored his 26th goal of the season, assisted by Backstrom.
-No penalties called. Refs decided to let the boys play…
-Caps win 7-1
On the end of their lengthy road trip, which was finalized with back to back games, the Caps kept up with their winning ways. They are now 32-7-3 with 67 points. The Capitals lead their division by 16 points, and their conference by 13 points. Ovi leads the league with 26 goals and we all know, he will not stop there. Don’t forget, half off Papa John’s tomorrow and FREE WINGS at Chili’s.
Up next, the Caps have a well deserved three days off. Their next game is at home against the Vancouver Canucks at 7pm.
By the way, it’s John Carlson’s birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CARLY!!
From practice at Kettler Ice Plex to the final horn at Verizon, the Washington Capitals played today like a team that wants to keep on winning. And win they did. They soundly beat the Montreal Canadiens—the Atlantic Division’s first place team 3-1. With this loss, the Habs slip to second place in their div. Not too shabby a day.
In the beginning of the game, Jay Beagle had a nice chance but could not put the puck in the net. Then Evgeny Kuznetsov deflects a Nate Schmidt shot and the Capitals are on the board first at the 6:45 mark of the first period.
Tom Wilson and Jarred Tinordi drop the gloves at the 12:12 mark, receiving matching five-minute majors. Then, after Daniel Carr goes to the box, the Caps’ second power play chance was better than the first but alas no goal.
A little roughing occurred when P.K. Subban expressed displeasure with Jason Chimera. Jay Beagle, with a beauty of a goal, doubles the Caps lead 1:30 into the second period, 2-0 Caps.
This bring Chimmer’s season goal count to 10 and the number of Caps with double digit goals to six.
But 24 seconds later, Carr got the Habs on the board, 2-1 Caps. Later in the period, Nicklas Backstrom went to the box for slashing on P.K. Subban and there was question of if Subban embellished. He did not get a penalty but Caps fans would boo him for the rest of the game.
11:15 into the third period, Jason Chimera sped by the Habs and put one past Condon, Caps up 3-1. We even saw our first “embellishment” penalty when Montreal’s Paul Bryon took a dive on Brooks Laich’s interference penalty. There was much chatter on Twitter about this one!
Before the period was over Alex Ovechkin would take a puck to the forearm but all is believed to be well with him. Hit by a shot from his teammate Matt Niskanen, according to CSN-DC.
The Canadiens pulled Mike Condon for the extra attacker with 2:21 left in the game; however, it didn’t help them. The Caps extend their winning streak to seven games with a 3-1 victory over the Canadiens.
The three stars of the night went to: Jay Beagle, Tom Wilson, and Nate Schmidt.
Salute to our Military
Tonight the Washington Capitals honored retired Colonel Richardson for his service.
The Russian Troyka: Ovechkin, Orlov, & Kuznetsov. Who scores first and who has the most points by the end of the night??
Game time is 7 pm From Air Canada Centre in Toronto. Braden Holtby is at one end; Jonathan Bernier at the other. Bernier is hoping to get his first point in the win column tonight. He is in for Leaf’s number one goalie James Reimer who is out with a lower-body injury.
The Leafs will need to defend against their old nemesis Alexander Ovechkin and the new brut force the Caps have unleashed in two other Russians: Evegeny Kuznetsov and Dmitry Orlov. In the meantime, the lower two lines are showing that they too pose a threat to opposing teams. Keep a watch on these guys.
Who to Watch:
Joffrey Lupul who has registered 22 points in 20 games against the Caps.
Can Dmitry Orlov extend his scoring streak?
Can the Caps make it five in a row and take their first win for this road series?
Justin Williams: Two points to go to reach 600 career NHL points
Karl Alzner is two games away from 400 consecutive games.
The Caps took an optional skate this morning at Air Canada Centre in Toronto in prep for a 7 pm game against the Leafs. They are there and we are here…so we give you some shots from previous practices to tide you over.
Tidbit for Tonight
The Leafs have a pretty incredible PK streak going. They haven’t let the opponent score on the PP in five games. They currently rank fifth in home powerplay percentages and have successfully held back the Caps in the past. Let’s hope we are ready for their defense should we pull in a PP.
Toronto Press has pegged hometown boy Tom Wilson as an “enforcer” and the “best agitator” in the NHL. All this to mean that Tom will have to watch his back as the Leafs are likely to try and draw him into some fights to get him off the ice tonight. Not that he doesn’t already have a target on his back!