WASHINGTON - The NHL almost could not have scripted the 2015 Winter Classic any better. Cheap New England Patriots Jersey
.From the time the Washington Capitals and Chicago Blackhawks took the ice at Nationals Park, through a fly-over by F-16 fighter jets, an Alex Ovechkin goal and the drama of a late winner by Troy Brouwer, Thursdays game was a showcase of top-of-the-line hockey.Its a celebration of our game, Capitals defenceman Matt Niskanen said.It was a celebration of the good and the bad. The only thing that hurt the majesty of the afternoon was a series of late penalty calls that contributed to the Capitals 3-2 victory and left a sour taste in the mouths of Blackhawks players.A questionable hooking penalty on Jonathan Toews in the games final minute paved the way for Brouwers goal with 12.9 seconds left.I dont know how much that play deserved a call there, how much it had to do with maybe us getting a few more opportunities on the power play previously in the game, Toews said. Its not a good feeling especially with the excitement, the hype and the energy that surrounded this whole thing leading up to this game.For more than 55 minutes, this was a game so well played it wouldve been a thriller no matter the setting. Sun played a role on at least one goal, but the ice was so good the teams were able to race up and down like a track meet.Washington waited four years since the Capitals visited the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2011 Winter Classic to host this event. Despite concerns about sun glare, it began on time because captains Ovechkin and Toews and Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford gave the thumbs up during pre-game warm-ups.For us, the primary issue, if there was to be an issue, was player safety, commissioner Gary Bettman said. Once we were comfortable that that wasnt going to be an issue, everyone decided, I decided, it was time to go and play on time.Unlike past Winter Classics, there wasnt a sloppy feeling-out period. Eric Fehr scored on a breakaway early, his third outdoor goal in his second Winter Classic to become the NHLs leader in that category.The teams switched ends at the 10-minute mark of the first period to make it fair given the sun glare. Not long after that, Ovechkin scored on a rebound and Patrick Sharp answered for the Blackhawks on a power-play goal that Braden Holtby couldnt see because of the sun.Even if that goal, and perhaps Brandon Saads in the second period that came after an odd bounce off the end boards, would only have happened outdoors, thats part of the deal in games like this.When the elements werent a factor, the facts of hockey came into play. The Blackhawks got 1:31 of a five-on-three power play in the second period, but Duncan Keiths stick broke at the blue-line and they got zero shots on net in their best chance to take control.The mentality today was just shoot the puck and things happen, but on a five-on-three, its not the same mentality, which probably didnt help us, Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. When you dont score on five-on-threes, you generally dont win and that ended up being the result.A late penalty on Niskanen, a borderline boarding call, gave Chicago another opportunity. There were two seconds left on that power play when Toews got his stick across the body of Capitals centre Nicklas Backstrom.I dont really think at any point in the game the refs are looking to give an easy one to a team, Washington defenceman Karl Alzner said. Its bad timing for them, good timing for us.When Saad slashed Ovechkin on the ensuing penalty kill, the puck was free for Brouwer to turn around and fire it past Corey Crawford. It wasnt picturesque, but the former Blackhawks winger will take it.Im not sure where it even went in, but I heard the noise of the crowd, heard the noise of the guys on the ice, Brouwer said. It was one of those where you know the time, you know the score, and youre just trying to get a puck on net, and thankfully it went in.For the Blackhawks, it was hard to take.Regardless of what happens, you never want to lose in the last minute of a game or you never want to be scored on in the last minute of a period, forward Ben Smith said. Its tough to swallow, for sure.Brouwer was playing with a heavy heart 11 days after Clint Reif, an assistant equipment manager for the Blackhawks and a friend, was found dead at his home. Brouwers father, who had a stroke two years ago, was also among the 42,832 in attendance and sent him a congratulatory text message after the goal.The Vancouver product won the Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2010 and scored a late winner during the Capitals memorable playoff series against the Boston Bruins in 2012. This was still special.Ive had some good moments in my hockey career, but this one, with all the intangibles, that played a part in it, Brouwer said. My parents being able to come into town, playing against my former team, this being the first goal that I scored against my former team and the dramatic fashion at the end of the game of how everything played out, its going to be a memorable day, a memorable event.There were plenty of memorable images, including before the game when players entered around a replica of the U.S. Capitol Building and a giant American flag was unfurled on the ice. After the puck was dropped at 1:30 with a perfect temperature of just over six degrees, there was Ovechkin jumping into the glass to celebrate his 18th goal of the season.But by the end, Capitals fans added another by tossing their seat cushions in the air to celebrate Brouwers goal. Its a local tradition that dates back to a Washington Redskins NFL playoff game in 1991 down the street at old RFK Stadium.The Capitals became just the second home team to win a Winter Classic, joining the Bruins, who needed overtime to beat the Philadelphia Flyers in the 2010 event at Fenway Park.You definitely want to win a home game like this, said Fehr, a native of Winkler, Man., who has become something of a Winter Classic hero after scoring twice in the 2011 game. You dont want to let your fans down.Even if Blackhawks fans walked to the exits with their shoulders slumped a bit from a stinging loss, Smith said it was an honour just to be a part of the Winter Classic. Bettman was, as usual, satisfied with how the event turned out, and he had reason to given the level of play.I know they get compared one outdoor game to another: theyre all unique, theyre all different, theyre all special in their own way, Bettman said. I dont know what peoples expectations were for our event here today, but the Winter Classic here in Washington couldnt have been better from a fan experience and an entertainment standpoint.Barry Trotz was coaching his first outdoor game and sure seemed to enjoy the whole experience. That extended to his post-game news conference.Ive got the first question, Trotz said. Did anybody have any fun? Yeah, Im having a lot of fun right now.Notes — Blackhawks forward Kris Versteeg left the game in the third period with an upper-body injury and did not return. Quenneville said Versteeg could be out for a bit but said the team would know more Friday. ... Capitals defenceman Brooks Orpik not only played but led the team in ice time (24:44) just three days after suffering what looked to be a scary knee injury. Orpik had been considered a game-time decision. ... Billy Idol performed before the game, Gavin DeGraw during the first intermission and then Lee Greenwood during the second.---Follow @SWhyno on Twitter. Cheap NFL Jerseys
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. The Predators announced that Rinne had been cleared for the next step of his recovery after meeting with doctors earlier Monday. Coach Barry Trotz said a meeting was planned for later Monday to set a weekly plan for Rinne.Bell Medias TSN and RDS have reached a comprehensive new media rights agreement with the United States Golf Association (USGA) that extends the networks long-term partnership with the USGA - making TSN and RDS the exclusive Canadian broadcasters of the U.S. Open through to 2022. The expanded partnership was announced before TSN and RDS begin their exclusive Canadian coverage of the 114th U.S. Open on Thursday. Beginning in 2015, the new eight-year agreement includes extended Canadian coverage across TSN and RDS platforms for the U.S. Open, U.S. Womens Open, and U.S. Senior Open Championships, as well as the USGAs national amateur championships. The new expanded deal includes the following: - Every U.S. OPEN round broadcast on TSN and RDS - A comprehensive suite of digital assets for TSN, RDS, and Bell Media platforms - Radio broadcast rights for TSN Radio and Bell Media Radio stations "The U.S. OPEN is one of the preeminent golf championships in the world and has been a key component to our coverage of the biggest events in sports," said Stewart Johnston, President of TSN. "Were thrilled to work even closer with the USGA executive team on this new and expanded partnership as we elevate Canadian coverage of USGA events across all of our platforms." "We are truly excited about extending and expanding our relationship with TSN and RDS and are eager to work more closely with them to showcase and promote the game of golf in Canada," said Mike Davis, Executive Director of the USGA. The agreement further solidifies TSN and RDS as the home of golfs marquee championship events, with a slate that includes all four of golfs Majors - The Masters, U.S. Open, The Open Championship, and the PGA Championship, as well as the Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup, as well as a series of PGA TOUR events. 114th U.S. Open on TSN The 114th U.S. Open returns to the historic Pinehurst No. 2 Course in Pinehurst, NC with a star-studded field that includes defending champion Justin Rose, 2014 Masters champion Bubba Watson, Rory McIlroy, Adam Scott, Phil Mickelson, and Canadas Graham DeLaet. TSNs live coverage of all four rounds begins Thursday at 9 a.m. ET and concludes with the Final on Fathers Day, Sunday at 11 a.m. ET. TSN subscribers can also watch live streaming and on demand coverage of every round from the U.S. Open via TSN GO. TSN Digital platforms deliver bonus online coverage from the U.S. Open - coverage that goes beyond the television broadcast. Fans can live stream this bonus online coverage on TSN.ca, TSN GO, or the newly launched TSN Golf app. TSN also surrounds its live coverage of the U.S. Open with the multi-platform highlights listed below. Cheap Denver Broncos Jersey
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