What a week it has been for the Washington Capitals! They finished up a long home stretch with a disappointing record: 3-5-1 (plus a road win against Boston). Prior to those 10 games, the Caps had enjoyed being known as one of the hardest teams to beat in their own barn. The final game of the home stretch, last Sunday against the Pens, went to overtime, where Sidney Crosby was the deciding factor in the shootout -- ouch!
Okay, on to bigger and better things. The Caps went on the road this week against Nashville and Philadelphia. Both games were very physical, both were low scoring affairs (final score of 2-1 for each in favor of DC), and both were just what the doctor ordered. The Caps ended a 4-game losing streak in Nashville with 41 shots on recently acquired Preds goalie Dan Ellis. The Preds effectively shut down the offensive powerhouse known as Alex Ovechkin, and held Alexander Semin to just an assist. The Caps came through with a big win, though, as Jose' Theodore came up big, holding Nashville scoreless after allowing a goal in the first minute of the game. The road wins continued in Philly, where the Caps sought to redeem themselves from their 7-1 trouncing there in December. This time, Ovi came through with a goal, along with Brooks Laich (the Caps' pseudo-captain in Chris Clark's absence). Theo was brilliant again, and the Caps' D was more impressive in these two games than we've seen in a long while.
We're loving the Caps these days as they show signs of maturing and readying themselves for the grueling play they'll face in the post-season. The real sign of what this team is made of will be apparent as they take on the 'Canes at home tomorrow and then set off on an extended road trip that will see them travelling through Buffalo, Atlanta, and Tampa Bay. Caps4Kids will be there and will try to get some great pix to share with you. GO CAPS!!!