Photo: Scott Taetsch/Getty Images
Sunday’s 6-1 victory over the rival Pittsburgh Penguins was exhilarating in every way for the Washington Capitals. For defenseman Martin Fehervary, it was good to get on the scoresheet, but it meant even more to dedicate his opening goal on Hockey Fights Cancer night to his late mother Gabike, who passed away in 2009 from lung cancer.
Fehervary opened the scoring with a shorthanded beauty to give the Capitals an early 1-0 lead. It marked his second goal of the season.
2 on 1 shorthanded beauty! pic.twitter.com/7rJ5Lnk6Qq
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) November 15, 2021
Forward Tom Wilson, who earned the primary assist, was asked in postgame media availability about that two-on-one moment with Fehervary. “He honestly didn’t even look at me,” Wilson said. “Once I passed it to him, he was shooting it the whole way, but I love it…He’s got a really great shot. That’s twice now I’ve given it to him and he just buried it, so I’m completely fine with that.”
Wilson called Fehervary “one of our best players” Sunday night. “He was flying. Looked like he was playing forward at times he was up the ice so much. He is an awesome kid and we kind of joked around at the first intermission there. Heck of a shot… that’s huge,” he added.
Fehervary told the media that he knew he could score instead of passing the puck back to Wilson. “It was [a] great play by Tommy…I just hit it, so I’m happy.”
Even though it was a dominating win over Pittsburgh, the 22-year-old said that the team can “still be better” in certain areas, noting the first period wasn’t up to par, but they performed stronger in the final forty minutes. Fehervary mentioned his confidence is “definitely” strengthening in each game.
On Penguins captain Sidney Crosby essentially throwing him to the boards, Fehervary said, “I don’t know…I don’t even know what I should talk about it…I don’t care. We’ll see next game.” Crosby was not given a penalty on the play.
Crosby taking out some frustration in his return to the lineup. Pens down 5-1 to Caps pic.twitter.com/zHD40mg7OW
— Brady Trettenero (@BradyTrett) November 15, 2021
Head coach Peter Laviolette said Fehervary’s goal was “really nice,” adding, “Jumping up on the play like that…great shot…that got us off on the right foot. Defensively he’s been really good…he skates really well, he’s physical in the battles, and that’s where I think you notice him in a game like [Sunday night] …his game really shined through.”
On a different note, Sunday’s game was the Capitals’ annual Hockey Fights Cancer night—sharing and honoring stories of those currently battling cancer, survivors, and tributes to those who lost their fight. Fehervary dedicated his goal to his mother Gabike, who passed away in 2009 from lung cancer.
He took to his Instagram story and shared a video of his goal. “I really miss you,” he wrote.
Screencap/Video: @martin.fehervary/IG Story
Fehervary spoke in an interview with Bratislava media outlet SME during the 2018 World Championship in Copenhagen and discussed his upbringing in Bratislava, Slovakia, the loss of his mother Gabike, the importance of family, and his passion for the game of hockey.
“It was difficult for every member of the family. I had a beautiful relationship with my mother. It was not easy to go through that period, especially for my father. We were on our own. Father and three children. My brother was fifteen, I was nine, and my sister, I guess, was six. He did great. He raised three great children and took great care of us. We have come to terms with it, it’s over, but we can still feel it.”
You can read more about Fehervary’s interview here.
By Della Young