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Preseason Opener: Period One Overview

We're through one period, and the Caps lead 2-0. In the team's first preseason game, it's more important to focus on what's going on than the scoreboard. Here's a few things I've noticed:

Brandon Sutter has looked very promising in the defensive zone. He had no trouble sticking with the shifty and skilled Michael Nylander. He hasn't looked out of place at all. He also had a scoring chance on a Chad LaRose saucer pass, but was unable to deflect it out of the air while charging the net. It would have been a beauty if he had gotten stick on it.

Jakub Petruzalek has had a couple chances, the best being a give-and-go with Matt Murley — who was also good throughout the period —that left Caps goalie Simeon Varlamov out of position. But Petruzalek misfired a bit and put the puck into Varlamov's side — a break for the young netminder.

• The Joni Pitkanen-Joe Corvo power-play pairing is promising. Pitkanen has looked good throughout the period, in both ends of the ice.

• While he was beat twice early, Cam Ward has settled in. He denied Tomas Fleischmann his second goal of the period on a breakaway stop. Fleischmann had gotten behind Corvo.

• An end-of-the-period flurry by the Canes didn't end in a goal, but it showed off Sutter's offensive skills — he had two good chances, and LaRose had a good opportunity on a loose puck as well. The shots at the end of the period: 18-8 in favor of Carolina.

Note: I'll try and recap the second, but right after the third I'll be heading to the locker room to talk some of the team.