Sunday, April 6, 2008

C-A-P-S!!! Caps! Caps! Caps!

After completing one of the most improbable comebacks in NHL history, the Washington Capitals have an opponent for Round 1 of the playoffs. The Philadelphia Flyers, victors against the mysteriously absent-minded Penguins today, will take on the Caps in what should be a very physical series between these two rugged teams.

The Caps and Flyers played to season split this year:

Nov. 2: Flyers 3 at Capitals 2
Nov. 23: Capitals 4 at Flyers 3 (OT)
Jan. 13: Flyers 6 at Capitals 4
Feb. 6: Capitals 4 at Flyers 3

From a physical standpoint, the teams match up quite well. Heavyweights Donald Brashear and Riley Cote, who Georges Laraque recently called the toughest pound-for-pound player in the NHL, could meet up a couple of times to set the tone of the series. Both teams feature a couple of pests as well... the Flyers with Scottie Hartnell and Steve Downie (if he gets a jersey) and the Caps with Matt Cooke. The Capitals are rounded out by John Erskine and Matt Bradley. The Flyers also have Mike Richards and Jason Smith to provide a physical spark.

If Daniel Briere gets healthy, it will be interesting to see if he and Alexander Ovechkin continue their on-ice feud. Two years ago, Ovechkin boarded Briere while he was a member of the Sabres. The very next game Briere speared Ovechkin in his groin. Ovechkin went on to say that he challenged Briere to a fight but was declined.

While the physical side of the series will play a role, the deciding factors will be goaltending and special teams. And while both teams have been hot as of late, the playoffs are uncharted territories for many players involved, especially those on the Capitals.

No schedule has been issued as of yet. When it comes out, it will be posted here.

1 comment:

XFactor said...

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