One might have assumed my lockout-induced honeymoon period would last longer than four days.
Greetings from the StruggleBus. Last night’s Capitals home opener looked a lot like their season opener in Tampa Bay. As in: I reminded myself that the upside to losing is ticket prices stay low.
The Caps are not, by any means, the only team aboard this bus. They are not even surprising. Very early in this abbreviated season, the Flyers are having a breakdown as well.
Philly has a league high -8 overall goal deficit. Their goaltending problem is a problem, but not if they can’t score.
The Rangers also bought a ticket for this ride. They’re 0-2, gave up 6 goals to the Penguins and pulled Lundqvist in the 2nd period. Tonight they rematch against Boston, who beat them 3-1 in the first game of the year.
People expect a lot from Philly and NY – rightfully so. What about Carolina?
The Hurricanes have scored 2 goals, while giving up 9. That is not the #11 we were hoping for down south.
It’s too soon to panic, right? Teams are just shaking off the rust, getting their legs underneath them. We hope. The Caps issues last night were reminiscent of last season – bad outlet passes, no one in front of the net, sloppy entering the offensive zone – but magnified. They’re operating under a new coach and a new system, with new guys on the ice.
Well, not all new guys.
But some. The Caps called up Tomas Kundratek on Monday to replace Jack Hillen, injured in the first game.
HELLO. Also, how did you get on the ice when I’ve never heard of you? Originally a Rangers prospect and most recently of the Hershey Bears, Tomas played 5 games for the Caps in 2011-2012… while I as on my actual honeymoon. That explains it. No one aces every class in the first week of school.
Out west, the Kings, Flames and Coyotes are all winless thus far.
No one wants to raise the banner and get spanked, but it happened in LA. The Kings had real goal-scoring issues all of last regular season, and have just three on this one. The Coyotes have scored 7 and still lost both games.
I wouldn’t make it long as a Caps fan if I got down about every few bad games. What about you other fans? Are these growing pains, or symptoms of a larger illness? The Rangers and Flyers aren’t in danger of losing butts in seats over a shaky start. The Kings can ride the Cup train for a bit. Calgary will obviously be fine even if they’re bad. The Coyotes obviously won’t even if they’re great. The Caps weren’t full last night, and tickets for tomorrow start at $23 on StubHub. Those are middle-of-the-season, ennui-and-frustration prices.
Not what we want to see squashed on the windshield of our shiny new season.