Caps (roller) coaster

So, I've watched all the games since my last post (including the final two periods against Philly).  And boy, has it been a mixed bag.

The last two against Philly weren't too bad; not great, but not nearly as bad as the first.

The attempt at the season sweep against Pittsburgh was not good.  They looked unready in the first, and incapable through the second and third.  Malkin just being outright dominant did not help matters.  He missed a couple of the earlier meetings with the Pens, but I can't remember if he missed them all.  Regardless, he was easily the best player on the ice for that one.

The Carolina game... Man, the Caps again just looked unready for the first period.  I remember, a few years ago, repeatedly complaining that the Caps let themselves fall behind, then played like demons to win or tie.  By the time I'd watched this game, I was feeling like they were back in that mode.

And then cam Toronto and Columbus, and the difference in those two games, versus the three previous, was night-and-day.  Really, both were dominant games.

Scoring-wise, I guess most of the difference was secondary (or tertiary) scoring, because OV and Backstrom have continued their torrid points pace, and are now tied for the league points record (by themselves, after last night; before that, it was a four-way tie).  But the bigger difference is in possession numbers.  The three losses came with abysmal possession numbers.

I don't know where they're going from here, but it certainly looks a lot more encouraging than it did a couple days ago.

One factor in there is that two trades were made.  Gleason was brought in to round out the top six on defense.  I'm not thrilled with it, but he was cheap and will probably end up getting Green more minutes.

The other leaves me a bit less sanguine.  Glencross was brought in from Calgary, and is costing a second and a third pick in this year's draft.  I'm not terribly happy with his numbers, especially the drop in his possession numbers (and goals) this year and last.  The plan seems to be to put him on the second line with Brouwer and Kuzya.  I guess the pair of breakaways that the line got, last night, is encouraging, even if neither resulted in a goal.

Glencross has generally been used in a shut-down capacity, and that's part of why I'm not thrilled.  There's just no room for him on the first or third line, and those are the lines that face the toughest opposition.  Anyway, I think that was too much to pay for a so-so rental player, but not horribly so.

I hope he ends up contributing.  Next up will be Minnesota, on Thursday; hopefully the good numbers will continue (and maybe Dubnyk can have an off-day).  Go Caps!

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