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Stafford Hockey Club • View topic - I like that, and obviously not move around
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Postby officialsbaseball » Mon Nov 19, 2018 3:41 am
CALGARY , Alberta (AP) — Pheonix Copley went the distance for his first NHL win.The Capitals‘ backup goaltender stopped 27 of 30 shots in regulation and overtime, plus three of four in the shootout, as Washington beat the Calgary Flames 4-3 on Saturday.The 26-year-old backup from North Pole, Alaska, a community near Fairbanks, was making his third career start and his fifth NHL appearance Saturday.“I’ll remember this one for a while,” said Copley, who was mobbed by his teammates after Nicklas Backstrom scored the shootout winner.“Obviously the first win means a lot, so it feels good. It wasn’t an easy game. They came back and it was good everyone kept battling.”Matt Niskanen, Jakub Vrana and T.J. Oshie scored in regulation for Washington, which has won two of three on its Canadian trip.Matthew Tkachuk, Travis Hamonic and Elias Lindholm had goals in regulation for Calgary, which lost its third straight. Johnny Gaudreau had two assists to reach 200 for his career.Sean Monahan scored for the Flames in the shootout. Mike Smith turned away 24 of 27 shots in regulation and overtime.Smith repelled T.J. Oshie and John Carlson in the shootout, while Copley held off Tkachuk , James Neal and Gaudreau.The Flames trailed 2-0 early in the first period and 3-2 late in the third. Coach Bill Peters liked his team’s recovery from a 9-1 drubbing at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins two days earlier.“That’s probably as hard as we’ve worked from start to finish as a group,” Peters said.“We didn’t get down. The bench was real good. Lively and vibrant. Lots of positives, but we would have liked to get the extra point.”With Smith pulled for an extra attacker, Tkachuk tipped in a shot by Rasmus Andersson with 1:27 remaining to pull the Flames even.“Obviously you don’t want to let something like that affect you,” Copley said. “There’s still a lot of hockey left and big moments in the game.”Calgary had a power play 15 seconds later when Kuznetsov put the puck over the glass for a delay-of-game penalty, but the hosts couldn’t generate the winner.Copley hoisted the Stanley Cup with the Capitals last spring when he was called up from the AHL for the postseason, even though he didn’t’ appear in any playoff games.Braden Holtby will get the majority of the starts for the Caps this season, but Copley had some prep for Saturday. He played in a shootout loss to Florida on Oct. 19 when he relieved Holtby after the first period.“Cops made some great saves back there,” Backstrom said Saturday. “It was nice to get this one for him and get this one off his back.”The Caps went ahead 3-2 with about three minutes left in the second period when Niskanen threaded a shot through traffic to beat Smith glove side.Vrana opened the scoring midway through the first period. Kuznetsov turned a turnover into a two-man rush and dished to Vrana, who beat Smith stick side.The league’s best power play struck at 14:27 when Oshie backhanded a rebound over Smith after Ovechkin’s wrist shot.Fifteen second later, Gaudreau’s shot deflected off the leg of Hamonic for the defenseman’s first goal of the season. Hamonic missed eight games with a broken jaw suffered in the season opener.The Flames drew even on Lindholm’s power-play goal with just over three minutes left in the first. The Swede one-timed a cross-ice pass from Gaudreau for his seventh goal this season.NOTES: Flames forward James Neal was hit hard into the boards in the first period. He skated to the bench favoring his left shoulder, but continued to play.UP NEXTCapitals: Get four days off before continuing their Canadian trip at Montreal on Thursday.Flames: At Toronto on Monday in the first of back-to-back road games. Victor Hedman refused to go to sleep without a contract.A full year before he could become a free agent, the hulking No. 1 defenseman told his agent he wanted to sign a long-term extension with the Tampa Bay Lightning the first day he could. Hedman put pen to paper on an eight-year contract well before the sun went down.”It was never a doubt,” Hedman said that day. ”Staying in Tampa was the No. 1 priority.”Patrice Bergeron felt the same way when he signed his second , third and fourth contract with the Boston Bruins. Like Hedman, Bergeron wanted to stay with the organization that drafted and developed him for as long as possible while taking less money to surround himself with enough talent to win.Now each player is on the road to joining an exclusive and growing club of players who reach 1,000 games with one team. Over the past week, Chicago’s Brent Seabrook and Washington’s Alex Ovechkin became the 49th and 50th players in NHL history to play their first 1,000 regular-season games with the same organization, and that group will welcome many members in the next several years as franchise building blocks lock in to long-term deals.”You’re going to see it more often now,” Capitals defenseman Brooks Orpik said. ”Just the way the CBA is and the way the bigger names probably don’t move around as much as they did in earlier years.”Next season alone, longtime Seabrook defensive partner Duncan Keith and Bergeron are expected to join the one for 1,000 group, with Minnesota captain Mikko Koivu and Los Angeles captain Anze Kopitar in reach of the milestone before the end of 2018-19 if they stay healthy. San Jose’s Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Joe Pavelski, Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin and Chicago’s Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews aren’t far behind as this era of long-term stability produces a parade of silver-stick ceremonies for one-team foundation pieces.”If you’re playing 1,000 games in one organization, you have to be a certain level of player,” said agent Kent Hughes , who represents Bergeron. ”It’s really significant because you’re talking about a series of contracts and we’re in a cap world and in order for that to happen in a lot of cases, I think there needs to be a little bit of give and take on both sides.”In Ovechkin’s case, it was a $124 million, 13-year contract signed in early 2008 that then-NBA commissioner David Stern told Capitals owner Ted Leonsis he’d live to regret. The only regret now for Leonsis is not signing his face of the franchise for 15 years, and Ovechkin said if he could turn back time, he’d sign for 16 years.Ovechkin is an anomaly in today’s NHL, where contract lengths were capped at eight years in the last round of collective bargaining talks. Since that CBA went into effect in January 2013, 33 different players have signed eight-year contracts – 28 of whom re-upped with his original team.”It means a lot to any player to get off their career and say, `Well, look at this, I played 1,050 games with one team – my whole career, I’m one of the few,”’ said agent Peter Wallen , who counts one-team players Hedman, St. Louis forward Patrik Berglund and Colorado captain Gabriel Landeskog among his clients. ”The only reason you will stay there for 1,000 games is that’s because you’re in the playoffs every year, you know your GM is giving you the opportunity to go deep in the playoffs and they want to win the Stanley Cup.”The other most-recent players to reach 1,000 games with one team – Los Angeles’ Dustin Brown, Detroit’s Henrik Zetterberg and New Jersey’s Patrik Elias – all lifted the Stanley Cup, while Daniel and Henrik Sedin went to the 2011 final and were part of a perennial contender in Vancouver. It’s a delicate balance for teams between paying stars their value and maintaining roster flexibility to contend for several years.”It’s difficult because you can’t let that key player go while he’s in the prime and you have to keep him content,” Hughes said. ”If the player doesn’t work with you, then it becomes more and more of a challenge to find a way to remain competitive.”Yet the one-team, 1,000-game players should keep piling up with the likes of the Flyers’ Claude Giroux, Devils’ Travis Zajac, Bruins’ David Krejci, Kings’ Drew Doughty and possibly the Islanders’ John Tavares – if he re-signs this summer – on pace to hit the mark. Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeny Kuznetsov could follow Ovechkin as the only players to get to 1 ,000 with the Capitals after none did it in the first 40-plus years of the franchise’s history.”Organizations want to build a core group maybe, and that’s maybe why it’s so common these days that more guys stick with one team,” Backstrom said. ”For me, personally, I like that, and obviously not move around. But sometimes you can’t control it, either. I feel like we’ve been fortunate here that we’ve been here a long time, so I’m happy about that.”—
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