Last year Tampa Bay scored almost 90 percent of the time on the power play against the Capitals and tonight was no different as they scored three goals out of their six on power plays to defeat the Capitlas 6-3 in the season opener of the 2013 (2012 part lost) season. The lockout created a short preseason which resulted in sloppy play causing eleven pentalies total between the two teams.
Going into this game and this season the referees sort of got put in the same position as the NFL replacement refs from earlier this football season. This being because they were rushed into duty with only a week’s notice from when the lockout ended to the first game of the season. The referees are not the real story here but the players faced the same short preparation time.
Adam Oates made his head coaching debut for the Caps tonight, which was the team he played for back when he was a player. Oates who was hired by the team back in June 2012 faced a Lightning team he assistant coached for in the 2009-10 season. Last season Oates served as an assistant coach for the New Jersey Devils who went on to the Stanley Cup Finals but lost to the Los Angeles Kings.
Capitals winger Joel Ward scored two goals (one being on the power play) in the loss to the Lightning, it was the first time since March of 2009 that Ward had a two-goal game. Also winger Wojtek Wolski scored his first goal as Capital. As for the Lightning both Eric Brewer and Martin St. Louis each scored two goals, both of St. Louis’ goals were power play goals and only one of Brewer’s was a power play goal.
This season and tonight the Tampa Bay Lightning were celebrating their 20th anniversary of exsistence in the NHL. Also as a fun fact a member of the original Lightning team of 1992 (when they first came into the league) was playing in the game tonight, Roman Hamrlik. Hamrlik currently is the leader in games played in the NHL among active defensemen, he was the Lightning’s first ever draft pick being picked #1 overall in the 1992 NHL draft. Follow me on Twitter at @WesleyFball56.
About the Author
Written by Brendan Keelan
Former High School and College athlete (football, Wesley College)