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Discuss: Penguins edge Capitals for 10th win in a row

Mar 19, 2013, 10:21 PM EDT

penguinsfistbumpgetty Getty Images

In a game that occasionally reminded observers of why the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals had one of the NHL’s best rivalries, Pittsburgh narrowly edged Washington 2-1 on Tuesday. Let’s get to some talking points.

  • Rank your favorite streaks from the 2013 season so far. Which one do you prefer: the Chicago Blackhawks record-breaking point streak, the Penguins’ 10 consecutive wins or the Columbus Blue Jackets’ 11-game point streak (which also extended to tonight)?
  • Mike Milbury just said that the Sidney Crosby-Alex Ovechkin debate is “over,” with Crosby coming out on top. Is that true?
  • Is Pittsburgh’s defense for real?
  • Washington is now second-to-last in the East with 25 points. Can the Capitals make a late run and salvage a playoff spot?
  • Should GM George McPhee hold a fire sale instead? If so, which team could use red-hot Mike Ribeiro the most?
  • Finally, for Capitals fans who might be bummed out, here’s some evidence that we saw flashes of the “old” Ovechkin on Tuesday:

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  1. ironman721 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:26 PM

    Still March-ing! Let’s go Pens🐧❗ 10 strait!

    • ravenscaps48 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:44 PM

      Oh the infamous 50 minute effort… Well played, Caps… Well played

      • ravenscaps48 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:45 PM

        Good win, PGH… We certainly didn’t deserve it

      • ironman721 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:59 PM

        Sorry man, Ovi needs help. He can’t do it alone.

      • riehlg - Mar 20, 2013 at 1:46 PM

        ironman721 – That’s the problem, Ovi doesn’t make the players around him better. He doesn’t move the puck and just shoots shot after shot and unless he’s scoring, it doesn’t do much for the team. Crosby is playing with 2 undrafted players (Kunitz – 3rd in points, 1st in +/- and Dupuis). They are the highest scoring line in the NHL because of Crosby’s ability to see the ice and make passes. Ovi doesn’t have this. He sees only the net.

    • jpelle82 - Mar 20, 2013 at 11:17 AM

      pens do this every year it seems like. i wish it was in april and into playoffs for once…seems like they let their foot off the pedal going into the playoffs and find themselves trying to regain their identity once its too late. they streak at the wrong times i guess is where i’m going with this…they won 12 in a row then lost to tb in 1st round, they won 11 in feb/march last year and lost to phi in 1st round, less than 20 games left i hope they keep it going or at least play .750 hockey going into playoffs this time

    • ironman721 - Mar 20, 2013 at 6:09 PM

      Rehlg I totally agree. Being a winger not a center hurts him too but he really has no support even if he did pass. He is a good goal scorer but the caps are hurting for other good goal scorers to pass to.

  2. modellforprez - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    this must be the Gordon Staal Article? yes?

  3. JoeAvg - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    Give an assist to the crowd tonight on the game winning goal. It was their reaction to the Pens PK on the double minor that energized the Pens.

    • djamesbart - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:32 PM

      Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo (Heartbreaker)

      • grimlock410 - Mar 20, 2013 at 12:16 AM

        How pathetic is your life that you have to comment 15 times on a single PHT article.

      • andrewproughcfe - Mar 20, 2013 at 2:01 AM

        grimlock410 – Mar 20, 2013 at 12:16 AM
        How pathetic is your life that you have to comment 15 times on a single PHT article.

        ========================

        Says the guy who has time to count other people’s posts.

  4. djamesbart - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    I generally don’t like Cooke’s antics with the exception being when he is abusing the oncegreat8.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:20 AM

      I don’t think Cooke has had all that many antics. He did lose his cool there. No harm done. He’s 99th in the league in PIM and only has 26 this year…he’s done a good of controlling himself.

  5. steeltownpride - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    The real MARCH of the Penguins . Lets go for 11 on friday night against the Islanders .

  6. djamesbart - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:39 PM

    Anyone remember the exact moment Sid ripped out Ovechkin’s heart & ate it?

    • theageofquarrel - Mar 20, 2013 at 5:45 AM

      Yes. It was the moment Sid picked up Lord Stanley’s Cup and raised it over his head.

      • bgrillz - Mar 20, 2013 at 7:56 AM

        And rubbed it in a little bit winning gold with his stick, while Ovy was getting his tramp stamp touched up in Vancouver.

  7. Stiller43 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:39 PM

    “Mike Milbury just said that the Sidney Crosby-Alex Ovechkin debate is “over,” with Crosby coming out on top. Is that true?”

    Its been over for a few years, buddy….

  8. ironcity6pak - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    Pens are the real deal, not just talent but all ayers are happy playing with each other. The pens are clicking on all cylinders, with Letang and Malkin out this proves they got each others back. This is the March of the Penguins. 🐧

  9. Stiller43 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    “Mike Milbury just said that the Sidney Crosby-Alex Ovechkin debate is “over,” with Crosby coming out on top. Is that true?”

    Its been over for a few years, buddy…..

    • djamesbart - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:43 PM

      So true I liked it twice

  10. Stiller43 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:51 PM

    Lol sorry for the double post, my app was givin me crap the first time.

  11. dznet56 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:51 PM

    Pens are hot to be sure. But it doesn’t matter how hot you are now. What matters is who’s hot in May. And the once great 8 should go back to KHL. He should read Derek Sanderson’s story about what happens when fame and fortune go to your head.

  12. jacketsfan7 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:53 PM

    As a pens fan ( ps I’m a blue jackets and pens fan , If my username mislead you ) I was at this game , I really liked the energy in the crowd , that’s what got us that goal by matty , both Martin and Niskanen have been amazing this season , but that penalty kill is what we needed , that team , that power play , that awesome defense , which lead to that GOAL , fleury was great too , and I just loved this game , but also I have to appreciate how the caps played , I don’t like the caps but I got a lot of respect for them , ovi scored a goal and the caps did not play bad at all , anyways the pens played great and we came out on top
    Go pens!

    • djamesbart - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:57 PM

      Man rule: ONE favorite team per league.

      • djamesbart - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:03 PM

        I did give you a thumbs up for such good sportsmanship tho :)

      • bethgoesglobal - Mar 20, 2013 at 5:47 AM

        Good thing Columbus is in a different league then genius!

      • djamesbart - Mar 20, 2013 at 11:29 AM

        Dear Beth,

        In the National Hockey LEAGUE the East & West are called CONFERENCES.

      • whatthepuck2012 - Mar 20, 2013 at 11:11 PM

        OMG this is why I don’t like to hear chicks talk sports.
        I’m a chick…I’m allowed to say that. :D

      • hockeyhome - Mar 21, 2013 at 8:53 AM

        @whatthepuck2012 – you probably shouldn’t say that chicks should talk about sports, ESPECIALLY if you’re a woman!!!! That just means that anything YOU say shouldn’t hold any weight!!!

        You shouldn’t crap on someone who probably just made a mistake/misunderstanding. I’ve read this chicks other stuff before and I think she actually follows hockey a lot and seems knowledgeable on a lot of different teams as well.

        I’m a Woman Too- am I Allowed to Say That?

    • bethgoesglobal - Mar 21, 2013 at 8:04 AM

      @djamesbart. Yes there is a EAST and WEST Conference and Columbus is in the West and Pitts in the EAST!!! That was what I was meant, but I do realize that comment was about one team per league so my bad.

      Surely a MAN has never made a mistake in a post!!!

      And for the record- I do still think you can support as many damn teams as you want!!!

  13. mario66sid87geno71 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    6 games 6 goals allowed, I could go on but that’s all that needs to be said. This D is for real.

  14. mordock57 - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:06 PM

    Best penalty kill I’ve seen this year. You just KNEW if they got through it a goal would be soon to follow. The momentum was palpable. As someone already mentioned… 6 goals allowed in 6 games. The defense is playing stellar. Both goals… scored by defensemen, with our best scoring defenseman not even playing… Damn, I am loving this. :-)

  15. mario66sid87geno71 - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:06 PM

    1 st team in NHL history with a ten game win streaks 3 years in a row. Love this team!

  16. csilojohnson - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:12 PM

    Ovi needs to learn how to score from anywhere other then the left circle. Its a testament to his shot he still scores on it. (even though they cycle the puck as long as it takes him to sneak over there)
    Great game. Go Pens!
    Great run by the Jackets. Should be a very good rivalry in the future.
    Rooting for Bob. He is killing it in net. Im sure Flyers fans are wondering why Homer didn’t pay him instead.

  17. mp1113 - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:13 PM

    Great game, depressing as a caps fan. Had to score on that 4 minute power play. I think everyone knew that the pens would score if they killed that penalty. Glad to see brooks and Orlov back though and Holtby had another great game.

    • bethgoesglobal - Mar 20, 2013 at 6:05 AM

      Despite the loss I think the Caps did look pretty good tonight. It was a solid effort in a very energized building. I’m excited to see the way this team is developing under Oates; if they can re-sign Ribero I think we could see some really good things from the Caps next year.

      As for Milbury, that guy is just a jacka**. He has never had a good thing to say about Ovi in the best of times so his comments did not come as a surprise. However, I do agree that Crosby has proven to be the better play maker. On the other hand I think Ovi’s game has changed a lot over the past few years- he has become a lot more physical which gives him something that Crosby does not have. There is something to be said for durability though and Ovi certainly has won that battle.

      I also believe that Ovi’s game is beginning to come around again. He has been showing some really good stick work and sazzy skating recently. I think Ribero has been a really good influence and could be credited with Ovi’s improved vision on the ice recently- another reason why tying him up before the trade deadline should be a priority for GMGM right now.

      I have no real hope that the Caps will make the post season this year and while that is disappointing I think the Caps are continuing to make strides towards the ever- elusive Stanley Cup. (we can always take solace in the fact that this was really a half season year)

      • hockeywithdrawal - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:36 AM

        I didn’t think they played bad either. And I agree completely on Milbury – of all games to get someone else in the booth, NBC really should have taken the opportunity to make Milbury a healthy scratch for this one. No one in Pittsburgh wants to hear his sh*t, and I’m taking it that very few Caps fans want to either.

      • tbell1980 - Mar 20, 2013 at 9:26 AM

        Ovi is a shadow of what he was. He’s stopped his one move of coming down the right boards, crossing to the middle and shooting. Now he just sits and waits in the face-off circle until the players who are cycling the puck find him. He USED to be physical, until he was thought to be taking HGH or whatever he was taking to get huge. Talk about Sid being physical…. i don’t see Ovi chipping in shots in the crease, or posting up in front of the goalie. Sid is heads an tails about anyone else in the league, let alone Ovi. Ovi’s not even in the top 5. He’s a poor excuse for a captain, he’d be a great Robin to someone’s Batman.

        Go Pens

      • bethgoesglobal - Mar 21, 2013 at 7:38 AM

        “heads an tails about anyone else in the league”- learn to write bro!!!

        and you may need to learn to read too- I said that Crosby has proven to be the better play-maker, so chill.

        Also, if you watched the Caps more often you would see that Ovi has been playing closer to the net, as well as taking shots from both the center and the RW this season. As I said- he game is improving- he still not close to what he was 5/6 years ago, but improvement is improvement and it’s nice to see.

      • valoisjoeybfeld69 - Mar 20, 2013 at 2:36 PM

        Say what you will about Milbury, but, when it comes to Ovi, what was he to say? Ovi has always had great offensive skills, but he’s always been horrendous without the puck. Ovi doesn’t understand positional play at all. He is a one way player and a one trick pony. When it games to the finer aspects of the game he is completely immature. Period! Who would build a SC team around Ovi?

      • bethgoesglobal - Mar 21, 2013 at 7:52 AM

        I was saying that Milbury is completely biased when It comes to Ovi. I’m not sure he has EVER had anything good to say about him! When it comes to commenting on OVI, Milbury should leave his thoughts to himself and let someone with a little more objectivity speak.

        As for the actual play of Ovi, you should look to my other posts on this article. I think you’ll see that I’m pretty fair when it comes to players abilities. So chill out!

        And as for building a SC winning team around him- when the Caps signed him long-term their probably wasn’t any other team that wouldn’t have done the same (except of course the Pens who have Sid). Ovi earned that status early on- anyone would have built a team around him back then!!

      • bethgoesglobal - Mar 21, 2013 at 8:09 AM

        I should probably also remind you ( @valoisjoeybfeld69 ) that it was Ovi and not Sid who won the Calder Trophy in their first season. Again- who wouldn’t have built a team around him then.

      • valoisjoeybfeld69 - Mar 21, 2013 at 3:51 PM

        I disagree w/ you about anyone signing Ovi as a franchise player. Ovi was never anything more than a flash from the moment he came into the NHL

    • blackfoot11 - Mar 20, 2013 at 9:07 AM

      Great game by both teams last night. Having Orlov and Laich back in the lineup had a noticable impact for the Caps and Laich was actual getting top line minutes in the 3rd. The turning point was definitely the 4 min PP, the Caps failed to capitalize and the Pens made them pay. Still SMH that Alzer chose to fall to the ice in attempt to shot block Niskanen, instead of challenging him, but Niskanen put a hell of a shot past Holtby. Good hockey is good hockey and the Pens are playing it right now. Good luck in the postseason Pens fans as I hope my Caps will get it together in the offseason.

  18. jacketsfan7 - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    @djamesbart I like all teams , it’s just where I live I see the pens and the blue jackets so I like them the most and thanks

    • bethgoesglobal - Mar 20, 2013 at 6:59 AM

      You don’t have to justify your support of any team regardless of which conference or division they are in. I’m a born Caps fan who lives in Minnesota and is now a Wild fan too. I also like the Preds, Blues, and Sabres (i don’t know why, but…)

      I think we both like hockey- so root for any team you feel like whenever you feel like it- a good game is a good game- Like the Caps/Pens game last night :)

      PS- looking forward to seeing the Blue Jackets in the east next year- looks like they’re on the right track these days

  19. capsfan19 - Mar 19, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    Firesale. This franchise needs to be realistic, yes the fanbase will be pissed, but its time. It was a great bunch of years to get to the playoffs but id rather be better suited for next season.
    It was a good game by both sides. Too bad about 97% of pens fans fail to realize it, half are suckin the milk from crosbys teet and the others prob arent even watching. ;) yes im salty deal with it. “Ohhh caps fans are so mean waaahhhh”

    • crashtheboards55 - Mar 20, 2013 at 12:09 AM

      You should be salty. The Pens have owned the caps since ’91 playoffs. And your fanbase isn’t exactly loyal. Pretty pathetic actually. You can hate on Crosby all you want. The fact remains that ovechkin isn’t him and never will be. I do think the caps are just a few players away from being serious contenders.

      • valoisvipers - Mar 20, 2013 at 12:21 AM

        Yeah the Caps are close all they need is 6 top 6 forwards and 4 top four D-men and they are there.

      • theageofquarrel - Mar 20, 2013 at 5:51 AM

        The thing is, they have had great teams. They just do what they have always done, either lose to Pittsburgh or just flat out choke.

      • bethgoesglobal - Mar 20, 2013 at 6:49 AM

        That couldn’t be farther from the truth! I don’t know nor do I really care what the specific tally is between the two teams in the last 20 years, but since the Pens last Cup win in 2009 the Caps have Dominated them and consistently beat the Pens in the their own house.

        In the previous 3 seasons the Caps have a 9-3 record over the Pens of which they won 5 of the 6 games in Pittsburgh.

        I any event the Pens have not OWNED the Caps in recent history, despite their sweep of the Caps this season. So check yourself

      • theageofquarrel - Mar 20, 2013 at 10:01 AM

        The Penguins are 30-19-0 all time in the playoffs against Washington. 126-107-16 against them in the regular season. So yeah, keep thinking they don’t own them.

      • hockeyhome - Mar 21, 2013 at 8:32 AM

        @theageofquarrel – she said in RECENT HISTORY!!!!!!! and I’m actually surprised at that all time record- would have thought the Pens would have been much better than they have been. The Caps have been a average team nearly their entire existence yet the Pens are just over 50-50 with them- I would say that actually makes this argument over “Owning” the Caps even less valid!!
        126-107-16 doesn’t seem like Domination me!! +19 in the last like 35 years- Please, spare me.

    • tomahawk12 - Mar 20, 2013 at 7:52 AM

      When I think of Caps fans…mean or salty doesn’t even come close. Try crybaby…As a Pens fan living in D.C., I hear many hockey excuses/rationalizations when it comes to the Caps by their fans and the media. Such as your post referring to being happy making the playoffs?

      That’s a major difference between the two fan bases…happy with making playoffs?

      The way I see it, the so called rivalry with the Pens is largely one sided being fueled by the jealousy of Caps fans.

      Yes, it was a good game. But before jumping on Pens fans, at least have the fans/team to back it up and quit showing your “sour grapes” Caps fans are known for around the league.

      • hockeyhome - Mar 21, 2013 at 8:43 AM

        I think when your team has never won a cup and only made it to the finals once- you’d probably being saying/doing the same thing. Fans need to say what they say to help them feel better about their team and support their team- in good times and bad.
        If your precious Pens had the same history as the Caps you’d probably say whatever you could to show your support.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:46 AM

      You’re entitled to be salty – I would be too! That was the 269th sell-out crowd in a row, though, and I’m thinking the rest of the city was probably watching (actually ratings could have been a little low…it was, after all, JUST the Caps :) )

      Sorry you’re upset and salty, anyway – I dont’ think any of us think that you’re mean, just stupid :)

    • theageofquarrel - Mar 20, 2013 at 9:05 AM

      Stop swallowing Ovi’s baby batter and you won’t be so salty

  20. jdvalk - Mar 20, 2013 at 12:23 AM

    Capsfan, McPhee is the one that needs to go before any fire sale happens. 15 years in his first crack at GM is long enough.

  21. crashtheboards55 - Mar 20, 2013 at 12:53 AM

    @valoisvipers I know. It was just a little bit of sarcasim.

    • valoisvipers - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:18 AM

      Sorry Crashtheboards, I missed your sarcasm.

  22. joewilliesshnoz - Mar 20, 2013 at 1:11 AM

    Let’s not forget, the Flyers suck !

    • mordock57 - Mar 20, 2013 at 5:24 AM

      Who could forget? They’re still at the bottom of the division and don’t even know what .500 looks like.

    • theageofquarrel - Mar 20, 2013 at 5:49 AM

      Shhhhh my good man. We don’t want to encourage them.

      • ironman721 - Mar 20, 2013 at 6:57 AM

        We are Pens fans. We are better then that. If we win the cup, then we 🚮 talk.

  23. mj1818 - Mar 20, 2013 at 6:50 AM

    Capsfan19: were you not sucking from ovechkins teat a couple years ago? Now you’re saying firesale. All fans are the same. Easy to hop on board when things are good but quick to criticize, want change and ask for firings when things aren’t goin their way. Whaaaa

  24. obnoxiousDCfan - Mar 20, 2013 at 7:08 AM

    @theageofquarrel

    I am not making any excuses for the piss poor play by the Capitals or dropping an egg against the bolts in the 10/11 playoffs, but your post is pretty dumb considering that in the last 12 years, the Caps have only lost to the Pens in the playoffs twice. I wouldn’t call consistently going to game sevens “choking”, but that’s probably because I’m a fan of the team. While I would have loved to see one or more of those turn into a championship, at least they are a constant playoff contender. I’ll take that over being an Blue Jackets fan and watching my team make the playoffs once in 13 years, any day.

    If any of those playoff appearances ended in one Stanley Cup victory, this season would be completely different. The Caps would be an “Elite team having a bad year”, not “Washed up! Fire sale now!”.

    They need to keep McRib and get GMGM out, now.

    • theageofquarrel - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:04 AM

      Capitals = also rans. How did you enjoy seeing Gonchar win the Cup with Pittsburgh? I bet you cried and stomped your feet cursing the Pens.

      • hockeyhome - Mar 21, 2013 at 8:47 AM

        You’re kinds and a-hole aren’t you.

      • bethgoesglobal - Mar 21, 2013 at 9:01 AM

        Yes I think he is an a-hole :)

  25. vcupats - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:07 AM

    Capitals hockey: We do everything but win games. (coming from a Caps fan)

  26. jazzyherb - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:11 AM

    Cooke is a former Capital also

    • theageofquarrel - Mar 20, 2013 at 8:16 AM

      Yeah but Gonchar was a long time Cap. Cooke spent about 5 minutes there.

  27. capsfan19 - Mar 20, 2013 at 9:31 AM

    I agree mcphees gotta go. And yes firesale because its just time. This franchise needs to be seriously cup contenders, not just a perenial playoff apearance team. And im not just jumping ship because things are going bad morons. Listen to ANYONE talk about the caps they say the same thing, things need to get shaken up. Go ahead look try and read between the lines and say im another dumb or wrong caps fan. This guys not a bandwagon fan… Between all the highs and lows i wish i was! Maybe id sleep better at night :p.
    But it is frustrating, i see a perfect parallel in the canucks (yes they won an additional presidents trophy, and yes they actually made it to a stanley cup final that year), buthad extremely dominate few seasons along with some legitimate chances at a cup. But right now per last season and now this? We’ve been on a serious down trend. You’d have to be pretty dumb not to see that.
    Id much rather deal with agressive philly or boston fans before id deal with pens fans and theyre high horse garbage. “We’ve only been dominating the washington capitals since our introduction into the nhl” come on with that garbage.

    • sportsfreak13 - Mar 20, 2013 at 10:02 AM

      Soe

    • sportsfreak13 - Mar 20, 2013 at 10:06 AM

      Sorry. 10 straight wins has left us a little cocky. . In all seriousness last nights game was fun and I’m looking forward to the capitals regaining form under Oates so this rivalry can be like it was in 09 when both teams were really clicking.

  28. jdvalk - Mar 20, 2013 at 10:08 AM

    Tomahawk12, what I’d be jealous of is the ability to earn a living in the market where my teams are from. Judging by the scores of Penguin ex-pats in DC, sucks to be you…

  29. djamesbart - Mar 20, 2013 at 11:40 AM

    Weird how Caps fans don’t mention Elmer Fudd.
    Seems Mr Boudreau wasn’t the problem after all (Coach of the Year candidate?!?)

    • ravenscaps48 - Mar 20, 2013 at 11:51 AM

      I have always said thatt BB was not the problem. The problem is Ted Leonsis

  30. phlyerzpwnu - Mar 20, 2013 at 9:16 PM

    Caps had about 9 and half minutes of PP time and Ovi was on the ice for 8 and half minutes of it…he looked dead tired towards the end of the 4 min PP, where I don’t think he got off the ice until about 20 or so seconds left in it…No wonder the Pens scored right at the end of it…they were done. so dumb. nice piece of coaching there or a super stubborn Ovi. Im guessing it was Ovi not wanting off the ice.

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