WASHINGTON - It did not take long. Try only 1:17 into the first for the sea of red to explode. Alex Ovechkin found the net, sounded the horn, and the Maple Leafs never had a prayer in this contest.
Oh, and M-V-P chants were screamed by the capacity crowd. Imagine being called MVP after 77 seconds.
That is how great Ovi is.
Washington used three goals in each of the first two periods to cruise to a 6-4 win at Verizon Center Saturday night.
The Caps did what the Caps did best in Northwest D.C. - score early and often. Last season, Washington started the season 18-1-1 at Verizon Center, by scoring early, thus getting a lead they would not relinquish.
Last night was no different.
After Ovechkin scored his third goal of the season, newcomer Mike Knuble recorded his first goal in his #22 Capitals jersey with 10:48 remaining in the first period.
To make matters worse for Toronto, who lost in their home opener two night prior in overtime to Montreal, Brooks Laich had a breakaway, and tallied his third goal of the season.
In the second, a new goalie, but the same result as the first - three more goals for Washington.
Toronto managed a goal to cut the lead to 3-1, but Washington answered quickly, with Alex Semin scoring his first of two goals just a couple minutes later.
Another newcomer, Brendan Morrison, scored his first goal as a Capital 10:42 into the second.
Semyon Varlamov made his first home-opening start in D.C., and through two periods, he stopped 24 of 25 shots.
Up 6-1 entering the final 20 minutes, the defense relaxed, a little two much, and the Leafs scored three times. Though the Caps failed to score in the final period, the game was over before it really began.
Varly made three saves on six shots in the final frame, but his 27 saves were a plenty to pick up the victory.
The crowd was electric and the game was incredible to witness in person. Offensively, Washington looks unstoppable, but the defense cannot play two periods and expect to cruise to wins all season long.
The game is 60 minutes, and the D needs to stay on point for every second.
The Capitals hit the road Tuesday for Philadelphia, in what will be Knuble's first game back at the Wachovia Center and against his old team, the Flyers.
The puck drops at 7 p.m. and can be seen nationally on Versus.