This was one of the toughest weeks yet but undeterred at The Program...we trudged on like troopers. So now we will present our Fab 4 commercial free brought to you by Woodchuck Hard Cider. And now the 4.......
4th cider -- Alexander Ovechkin (Washington Capitals)
You know it is rare when AO gets 12 shots on net, has 2 goals and an assist, and is a +3 -- and that only gets you a fourth cider!! That can only mean there were some even more sizzling performances. Is that bacon I hear cooking? Ovechkin had 10 points in 4 games this week which means he will get a call from the NHL saying he is one of their weekly stars come Monday or so. An awesome night by AO with only one flaw...he got stopped in the shootout.
3rd cider -- Joey MacDonald (New York Islanders)
He is capable of this quite often actually. 38 saves on 40 shots and a constant barrage of near misses will get you on here...even above Ovechkin. But MacDonald was amazing even when he gave up 2 Ottawa goals late in the third. They had to be perfect shots to beat them and sure enough they were. In the final minutes, MacDonald stopped several big blasts from Filip Kuba at the point and a big stop on Heatley in the final moments to preserve the win. In a night filled with some surprisingly solid goalie performances, MacDonald gets my nod!
2nd cider -- Evgeni Malkin (Pittsburgh Penguins)
Yep! He had a goal, 3 assists and was a +3...add in the two power play points and I was a very happy camper and so were a lot of fantasy owners and Pens fans as well. Anyone that can pass like Malkin is a treat to watch and Jordan Staal cashed in on two of those feeds. The funny thing last night was Crosby (1 assist) pretty much was held in check but Malkin was too much for Buffalo. His size and speed like a great NFL running back tired them out late when it counted. The only way to sometimes stop Malkin is resort to a little trickery or hope he gets sick.
1st cider -- Nicklas Backstrom (Washington Caps)
5 point night! That is all you really have to say. Really I thought he should have been in the shootout...he could have faked an imaginary pass that would have found its way in the net. That is how great Backstrom is with the puck. Normal moves are mundane and extraordinary moves are routine. The thread the needle pass everyone will talk about with under a second to go in regulation that set up Ovechkin was pure artistry. I still don't get how he got that puck in that area. That was designed too. Ovechkin and Backstrom go together like ham and cheese and now that they have cranked up. Get ready for the ride! Backstrom is a worthy first cider choice this morning!
There were so many tough choices this morning from last night's action but here is a video from somewhere in Saturday Night hockey. Just had to show this again.