It took a knee on knee collision, but our good friend with a mighty shot and a scary beard has finally had a performance worthy of his highly lucrative contact offer he’s sure to receive. It’s not like he’s been slacking so far this year, but without a doubt Shea Weber has up until last night been overshadowed by Ryan Suter’s flashy play so far this year. Suter has been more physical and normal, and has been shooting more. (Hey, we’re all for more shots on this team)
Shea Weber going into last night was leading the team in plus/minus (begin griping about me mentioning that stat), but not much else blew you away about Weber’s season other than the minutes those two play. Until last night, that is.
Shea Weber and Alexander Ovechkin are two of the absolute best in the world. It’s not even debatable, those two along with Nicklas Backstrom, Mike Green (injured, get well soon), Ryan Suter, and the incomparable Pekka Rinne have put on some classic games over the last few seasons. Even in the Olympics Weber and Ovie were pitted against each other.
Both play a similar physical game; both hit like a train, and create space. Ovie doesn’t win as many fights and Shea breaks jaws, but that’s just splitting hairs.
We all know about Shea’s temper. You cheap shot him, and God help you. At times this costs the Preds (see: The Dallas game last spring, Shea takes a boarding call and the Stars win it on a PP goal.) and other times he just happily lays out people in scrums (see: The Columbus game in February where he dominated the game, got boarded by RJ Umburger, and took out his frustrations on poor Fedor Tyutin who dropped like John Mayer after another line of blow.) It’s entertaining at times, and it’s scary. Ryan Kesler’s life flashed before his eyes after he crashed into Pekka Rinne in game 6 of last year’s playoff series.
Last night, Ovechkin lined up Weber with a knee on knee collision, something he’s been known to do before. No call was made on the play. From that moment on, Shea Weber became the scary SOB we’ve come to know and love. Ovechkin was held to 0 goals, and 4 shots, and was witness to the electric game winner from Colin Wilson and Martin Erat. Weber and Suter were on the ice for all 3 goals, and gave the Caps fits all night.
Between the two, Weber seemed to play the better game the last two outings. That’s not to say Ryan Suter was bad, but Weber seemed to be the more level headed and less reckless. Odd, given their history… but we’ll take it.
And with Brett Wilson being officially announced today as another investor, Shea Weber could be wearing the C for a while. At least, those of us in gold hope so.