Saturday, December 22, 2007

Alex S. on the Rise

Instead of dwelling on the unpleasant business of a 5-2 loss to the Canadiens (still only the third regulation loss of the month, the same count as those critically acclaimed New Jersey Devils and Buffalo Sabres, fewer than those critically worshipped Pittsburgh Penguins and New York Underachievers Rangers), let’s look at the subtle re-emergence of Alexander Semin these past few games. It’s an emergence that could well lead (back) to multiple-goal games and another 30-goal season pace. Even if a pesky ankle won’t allow for the putting up of the nearly gaudy numbers we saw last season, we could still yet see renewed prowess from the (other) young Russian, bringing about that much-discussed secondary scoring threat that is needed to take some opposing defensive pressure off of Alex Ovechkin.

We’re in the midst of a grand Semin point-scoring streak here. Three games, three points (2G, 1A). Modest, perhaps, but nonetheless something to celebrate from a player of 70-point potential who has been slowed by the aforementioned annoying joint for the entire season. Another possible contributing factor: the annoyance Semin must feel towards EA Sports, for the fact that they still cannot pronounce his name correctly in their otherwise ever-improving line of NHL video games. No doubt that Brooks “Lack” Laich can relate to this injustice.

Tonight’s game is perhaps more important than a late-December game vs. the Islanders should be, but regardless it’s a win the Caps need to continue to gain ground in the East. We feel good about this one, though, because if there has been one constant in Bruce II’s brief interim reign, it’s that the teams rebounds nicely from lackluster efforts and bad losses.

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