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*** 2021-22 Playoffs Opening Round: Washington Capitals (WC2) at Florida Panthers (A1) - (FLA WINS 4-2) ***


WSH vs FLA  

8 members have voted

  1. 1. Caps or Cats? You make the call!

    • 1- Capitals in 4. Ovie is healthy, is a monster, and everyone else on the team become monsters too. Florida is skinned alive!
    • 2- Capitals in 5. Wsh takes it to Florida, Panthers grab a win, but find out real quick the playoffs and regular season are NOT the same.
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    • 3- Capitals in 6. Each team dictates the pace, each come out with wins because of it....but the Caps don't need a full series to upset Mr. President Trophy Winners.
    • 4- Capitals in 7. Thrilling series that features everything, including the lowly WC seed ousting the highest point getters. Would Ovie and his Caps be on their way to Lord Stanley then??
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    • 5- Panthers in 4. Washington are back to being regular season competitors. Nothing more than an annoyance to the Cats.
    • 6- Panthers in 5. Capitals try but the Panthers laugh at their feeble attempts at greatness.
    • 7- Panthers in 6. Washington gives as good as they get, but Florida won't be denied, certainly not by these wild card dudes.
    • 8- Panthers in 7. Cats get a close call scare...Capitals looked like they would ruin their run, but Florida, with the dozen home ice fans behind them, pull out the distance series win!

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Posted (edited)

801593943_wshvsfla.thumb.jpg.16e8dfd88721aa9e607536109084b55f.jpg

 

Season Series:
Panthers won it, 2-1-0

President's trophy winners vs a team that seemingly just barely hung in there to grab a spot (though the competition below them was sub par to say the least).
On paper, perhaps, this match favors entirely the Florida Panthers, but since games aren't played on paper (would be tough to skate on, I'd imagine), the Caps feature some elite veterans, including the likes of Alex Ovechkin and Niklaus Backstrom, who would love nothing more than one more Cup before the sun sets on their careers.

Question marks abound for the Caps however....health to star players, stability in goal, their ability to shut down and defend come crunch time, just to name a few.
Florida is young, fast, and hungry, and have even picked up some grizzled vets along the way between this year and last, who want to be the NEXT Florida based champion.
And have the MONSTER offense to possibly back that up!

Capitals CAN pull an upset here, but man, will lots of things have to go right for them, and players be at their peaks. 
Florida does seem susceptible to pressure on their defense, and Sergei Bobrovsky has been far from a playoff giant during his career.
But are the Caps the team to take advantage of any of Florida's deficiencies?
That is why they play the games.....and if there is one series where I can smell a big upset most acutely, this one is it.

Washington vs Florida and the NHL Playoffs.
Series talk here!

Edited by TropicalFruitGirl26
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The Superbowl, World Series, NBA Championships, World Cup. Nothing even comes close to the Stanley Cup Playoffs. 

Postgame show said Beninati lost his voice.  But yeah, COVID not gone.  Most of the time I care for my elderly mother in the Midwest who is immunocompromised.  We’ve both taken 2nd booster.  Still, I mask everywhere, since if I get it, she’ll get it and likely not survive it.  When I go to a Midwest grocery store or pharmacy, I’ve been in a small minority of The Masked recently.

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Very close series to call. I think it goes 7, and in double OT, a goal by Giroux seals the series W for the Panthers. It's literally THAT close. FLA in 7.

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Caps have been so damn streaky these past months.  “Life is like a box of chocolates.”  What we gonna get?

 

Despite the good road trip to NE Canada and the American Southwest, things fell apart starting 3rd period first game back against Leafs.  Dismal in twin losses to NYI, then so-so NYR finale.  They surely haven’t been maintaining good habits in the final week.  I think we get more of that despite good pushes here and there for parts of the games.  Can they get re-acclimated to 60 minutes of sound play most nights?

 

And Backstrom.  Sooo.  Slow.

 

And still many signs and occasions this year of being unable to withstand opponent pressure late in the 3rd period.  (They nearly played OT in Calgary after scoring an empty netter, e.g.  Not a one-off of being flustered late, either.)
 

Ovie or no, I say sweep with one being an OT loss.  So with better luck in that game it could be 5, but I’ll bet 4.

 

 

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My brain says "Florida Panthers"....best points team in hockey this season. Monstrous offense. Killer hitters. Good goalies. Fast skaters.

But my gut feeling says, THIS match up reeks of "upset special".
Everyone seems to be selling Washington short...and truly, based on some of their play this season, I can see why.
They've had ample opportunity to wrest the first wild card from Boston and even pass up Pittsburgh for the M3 slot and did neither.

But I can't help but think the old bulls on the Caps still have enough fuel to give the newbie Cup contending Panthers a shock. A big one.
Gonna vote with my gut instead of my brain on this one.
Vanecek and the Washington defense play insanely well (that sound you heard was all the Caps' fans jaws collectively drop :shifty: )

Gonna pick the SAFE "in 6", but picking the UNSAFE winner, the Washington Capitals. You heard it hear first...now, to see down the road how well THIS post ages! ;) 

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Goalies: :panthers:

Defense: :panthers:

Offense: :panthers:

Special teams (PP/PK): :panthers:

Coaching: :capitals:

Mental: :panthers:

Experience: :capitals:

Robustness: :panthers:

Depth: :panthers:

 

I'm about to go for the upset, but the Cats may be a bit too strong: Cats in 6.

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I think Aaron Ekblad may return for the cats in this series.  

Even 80% Ekblad makes them so much better defensively, pushing everyone back to their " traditional" slots. 

Chariot will be lower in the rotation and he should thrive. 

I think the cats poor defensive numbers,I think 3rd worst of playoff teams?, would be significantly better had he been available. I expect them to tighten up with Ekblad back and playing decently.

 

The Caps are tough and have some dudes who can fill it up. And Ovechkin, I mean,  They are a 100 point 8 seed... so they aren't a gimme.

 I picked FLA in 6 though because I think they're the deeper team and they learned from last year's war of a series v TBL.

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Picking a Cats Sweep (like I have) is +540 on Fan Duel.   Picking Caps in 6 (TFG can plead “diminished capacity” or some such later 😁) or 7 are both +880.  
 

Well I look forward to my $5 turning into $32.

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6 minutes ago, SaucyJack said:

And…opening goal of the series to consummate gentleman Tom Wilson.  I’m sure hearts are warmed everywhere!

 

Obviously very early, but the Capitals so far, look very sound defensively, not giving Florida too much to work with in the offensive zone.

Now with the lead, let's see if Washington changes anything up. So far, so good, but Florida scores in bunches, so Washington best not count on sitting on any leads.

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20 minutes ago, TropicalFruitGirl26 said:

Now with the lead

Couldn’t hold it, even for a period.  Hard to call this yet.

 

I’m not sure what it says that The Network puts NHL playoff ice hockey on the ESPN channels, and cornhole (I jest not) on the ABC mothership.

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13 minutes ago, SaucyJack said:

Couldn’t hold it, even for a period.  Hard to call this yet.

 

I’m not sure what it says that The Network puts NHL playoff ice hockey on the ESPN channels, and cornhole (I jest not) on the ABC mothership.

 

I despise what ESPN the corporation has become in general...in particular how they treat hockey.
Don't get me started on those guys...

Oh NBC Sports, oh Pierre McGuire, oh Doc Emerick, how I miss thee... (stop laughing dammit!) :shifty: 

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Wow...holding by both Florida and Washington, but somehow the Caps get nailed for it.

I've been flipping between this game and Pit-NYR so not sure if this is a trend for this game, but just wow.

Should have let that go, or call both guys.

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Florida's Ryan Lomberg is either a ballsy pest, or plain stupid...actually going after Ovechkin who is twice his size.

I am betting he is the uber pest and would be willing to take a hammering to get Ovie off the ice.

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It’s nice to see a dude in the stands wearing a Bondra jersey ahh good times well maybe not so good but exciting and hope-filled.   Retire that 12 jersey!

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1 minute ago, SaucyJack said:

It’s nice to see a dude in the stands wearing a Bondra jersey ahh good times well maybe not so good but exciting and hope-filled.   Retire that 12 jersey!

 

Always great to see fans, TRUE longtime fans, do stuff like that.
I feel that way whenever I see a Minnesota Wild Brian Rolston sweater, or a Tampa Bay Lightning John Cullen or Chris Gratton one!

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Just now, TropicalFruitGirl26 said:

and now have the lead 3-2,

Give ‘er up, Warroad Minnysota!  “Osher” gittin’ ‘er done in Sunrise Flawda!

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1 minute ago, SaucyJack said:

Give ‘er up, Warroad Minnysota!  “Osher” gittin’ ‘er done in Sunrise Flawda!

 

Sorry, my Google translator doesn't seem to be working :ph34r: 

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“Your honor, RE: the charge that picking a Panthers sweep proved ludicrous, my client pleads ‘not guilty’.”

 

”On what grounds, counselor?”

 

”Your honor, my client was temporarily of unsound mind whilst making his playoff predictions, unduly influenced by Capitals performance in the final week of regular play.  Our case is built upon my client’s ‘diminished capacity’ during this relatively brief period of days preceding post-season play.”

 

”Defendant, you realize you won’t get your 5 dollars back, no matter what the court decides.”

 

”Um, like, wha…what happened dude, where am I?”

 

”Counselor please control your client.”

 

”Hoo boy.”

 

[curtain closes]

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  • TropicalFruitGirl26 changed the title to *** 2021-22 Playoffs Opening Round: Washington Capitals (WC2) at Florida Panthers (A1) - (FLA WINS 4-2) ***
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