Cover The Puck - Washington Capitals Hockey Blog

Mike Green's Mental Mishap

It's odd to think that Mike Green is suddenly the elder statesman on the Capitals blue line. It wasn't long ago that he was one of the 'Young Guns' that were primed to bring a Stanley Cup to Washington, we all thought by now. Green just celebrated his 28th birthday a week ago and he was paired up with the youngest player on the Caps blueline, Nate Schmidt.

As coach Adam Oates juggled both the forward lines and defense pairings for the first time this season, Schmidt could certainly look at this pairing as a promotion. Green had to take it upon himself to make sure the Capitals exited their own end before jumping up in the rush, but he was caught napping midway through the first period. This early error nearly cost the Capitals big time and could have changed the entire complexion of the game for the delicate Capitals.

The way the Capitals have played so far this season, another early goal when they were playing a beatable team evenly could have easily led to a collapse. On the brink of winning just one game on a five-game homestand, a blunder by the most experienced Capitals defenseman could have been a nail in the coffin early on. Green, goalie Braden Holtby and the rest of Capitals Nation lucked out.

Surviving the First Period

Washington survived the first period despite Columbus hitting iron on the play we've detailed. Coming out of the locker room for the second period, the Capitals got on the board with 2 goals in the first 8 minutes to take a 2-0 lead at home.

There's no way of knowing how the game would have played out had Columbus netted the goal just after the 10 minute mark of the first period, but it is a common theme in hockey that a road team must withstand the 10-minute onslaught of the home team. Columbus did so, and within 10 seconds of that mark, they could've taken the crowd and the Capitals completely out of this game.

Because of the critical timing and nature of Green's mishap, we've taken a closer look at this play that almost cost the Caps and put them in the position of playing catchup hockey yet again.

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Brian Kotler
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Brian Kotler of Cover The Puck

Plenty of people are writing about the Capitals these days, but not many are 'talking' or 'analyzing' the on-ice action. Statistics can only reveal so much. I've noticed that I'm always stopping the DVR and drawing on the TV screen with my fingertip showing my kids who should have been where and what could or should have happened.

So I decided to get some video software to do the same thing for you guys right here on this website. Problem is, combining and learning a lot of modern technology on the fly takes time. Mastering video and commentary to go along with the writing I do so well will take time. Just like a promising rookie, it will be fun watching the evolution.

A picture is worth a thousand words and a video can be worth a million. I'm here to condense those million words into 3-9 minute videos.