So it was a real case of cognitive dissonance to see this sight last night at Verizon Center.
Yes, it's Olaf Kolzig, not in a Washington Capitals jersey, but in a Tampa Bay Lightning jersey. No more Olie the Goalie for my Caps. Olie had spent his entire NHL career with the Caps, since being drafted in 1989. I felt bad when he left the Caps last spring, after being demoted/replaced/pushed out of the organization. Then again, Olie had clearly lost his edge; he was no longer the elite netminder that he had been. He lost his starter job to Cristobal Huet. The Caps caught fire and made the playoffs.
Business is business. Olie left town for Tampa Bay.
Sigh. The whole deal reminded me of 1994, the year that Art Monk -- Hall of Famer Art Monk -- was cut by the Redskins and played for the Jets for one year and the Eagles for one year. It just doesn't make sense!
Last night Olie returned to Washington.
It was weird. I mean, I own a Caps Kolzig jersey! Olie was my guy! But I gotta root for my team, not the former goaltender, no matter how much I liked him.
But I did join in the standing ovation during the Olie Tribute that the Caps put together -- how could I not? Olie won over 300 games for us! He was our beloved Godzilla.
But I also cheered when Tom Poti scored. And I cheered when Mike Green scored. And I cheered when Eric Fehr scored. And I cheered the loudest when Alex Ovechkin broke his nine-game scoring drought and scored.
And oh my, oh my, I was really glad that Brent Johnson was our goalie tonight. Thirty-four saves, some of which were amazing, especially after the Lightning woke up and decided to play hockey, earned him the Number 1 Star of the Game.
The Mighty 'Zilla has given way -- Heeeeeere's Johnny!