Caps vs Lightning Pregame: The Ice Cheetah’s Scratch

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From Caps Instagram, which I want to call Capstagram, but I won’t.

The Capitals’ last game against the Tampa Bay Lightning was probably the best of the season, an encouraging 5-3 win over a good opponent on the road. Now the Caps are home, the winning streak is dead, and we look to claim another pelt from what might be the best team in the league.

Unless you’ve got tickets, you’ll be tuning in with me at 7 PM on CSN.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 13-10-5 51.2% 99.1 27.8% 75.9%
Tampa Bay Lightning 19-8-3 53.9% 101.0 18.3% 81.6%

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Capitals-vs-Lightning

It’s a peculiar character trait that, sometimes, after having tempted the Fates only to inexplicably emerge unscathed and victorious, one seeks not only to dare the test again, but to do so confidently, even buoyantly. I first knew this the moment after I went skydiving – solo, there were no tandems back then – and mere moments after touching back to Earth I eagerly began planning the next date to fling myself out of an airplane that was perfectly sound.

Such is my mood today as we head into our second tilt in a week against Tampa Bay. Tuesday’s match was a thriller, to be sure, and one that I’m not so sure we had all that locked up. We played like champs nearly the entire 60 minutes, and hooray, we won and bailamoed. Three in a row and we looked great.

But sometimes greatness is a quirk; or worse, a passing wind that blows in only to melt away into the uncaring ether. So poetry.

Hey, we’re going to the game tonight– for that and more I would lurve to see a repeat performance. But the Bolts are still a really good team– consistently so. They’re really just so infuriatingly consistent that I don’t feel like tempting the Fates further by mocking Tampa Bay as being a city so old that “boarding” nearly always appears next to the word “shuffle.” I mean, the GOP 2012 convention actually lowered the city’s median age for about a week is all I’m saying. But not tempting fate.

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Caps vs Blue Jackets Pregame: Take Karl to #TheBank

horton

Fresh off a three-win road trip, the Washington Capitals have returned home… to spawn …and then to fight the Columbus Blue Jackets. At 7 PM at Verizon Center, the Caps will play host the the beat-up Blooj, the league’s most injured team by a mile.

If the Caps keep playing like they have been, they should be able to get their first four-game winning streak since April of 2013.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 13-10-4 51.1% 99.2 28.8% 76.2%
Columbus Blue Jackets 10-15-2 46.3% 98.0 23.0% 76.3%

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Caps at Lightning Pregame: Top-Line Inertia

stamkosWalk

From the Spoked Blog

The Washington Capitals have won three in a row just once this season– from November 7 to 11. Suiting up in Tampa tonight against one of the best teams in the league, the Caps will have a chance to go for three again. It won’t be easy.

Catch us at 7:30 PM as we follow along, begging quietly for some top-line offense. Game’s on CSN, so Joe B better be wearing something pretty for me.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 12-10-4 51.7% 99.0 28.2% 75.3%
Tampa Bay Lightning 18-7-3 54.8% 101.3 22.7% 80.4%

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Caps at Devils Pregame: Jagr or No Jagr?

Ben Bishop, Jaromir Jagr

The Capitals won a tight, not particularly convincing road game on Thursday night. Tonight at 7 PM, the team continues its road trip with hopes of defeating the New Jersey Devils.

The Devils are a stingy team, best at suppressing shot attempts in both directions, so maybe practice your knitting during this one. It’s on CSN.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 11-10-4 52.1% 98.7 27.5% 74.7%
New Jersey Devils 10-12-4 48.8% 100.9 21.2% 74.8%

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Caps at Canes Pregame: Into the Woods

cam-ward

It’d be nice if the Capitals would win a hockey game. Oh, look. There’s a hockey game tonight. The Carolina Hurricanes, eh? They’re pretty bad; maybe the Caps can beat them.

We shall see at 7 PM on CSN-DC. This begins a 3-game road trip that could be impactful on the team’s playoff chances.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 10-10-4 52.2% 98.4 28.4% 74.7%
Carolina Hurricanes 8-13-3 51.5% 97.5 21.5% 83.3%

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Caps vs Canucks Pregame: Good News, Please?

nuts

Maybe it’s this head cold, but it seems like everything everywhere sucks right now. Hockey in general, the Caps’ PDO specifically, the weather, treatment of people who aren’t white guys, Detroit’s power grid, Aaron Sorkin’s Newsroom. It all just sorta sucks.

Tonight at 7 PM the Capitals have the opportunity to start making things a little better with a home game against the Vancouver Canucks. It’s on CSN-DC and Joe B promised to wear something nice for you.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 10-9-4 52.3% 98.1 28.8% 77.5%
Vancouver Canucks 16-7-1 51.7% 99.0 18.4% 84.2%

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Caps at Leafs Pregame: Don’t Play Down

carlyle

I really thought this dude would be gone by now.

The Caps have gone from playing the single worst team in the league, Buffalo, to one of the best, the Islanders, back to one of the worst, the Toronto Maple Leafs. Though they’ve got a better record than the Caps, that poor hockey club just cannot get its act together. Tonight at 7 PM on CSN and NHL Network, the Caps will play visitor to the Leafs.

This is one of those “don’t play down to a lesser opponent” situations. This is also one of those situations where you guys tell me “we are what our record says we are” and I roll my eyes.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 10-8-4 52.0% 98.2 28.6% 80.6%
Toronto Maple Leafs 11-8-3 47.8% 100.4 18.5% 84.2%

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Kathy Kmonicek

Photo: Kathy Kmonicek

For the most part, the Caps held their own at Nassau on Wednesday. Now, back home in the sub-.500 confines of Verizon Center, the Capitals face the New York Islanders again.

I’d be totally fine with another loser point, but the full two would feel even better for my turkey hangover.

It’s an early one, 5 PM on CSN, so get your shopping done now. I just did sold my soul and first born to Amazon.com, so I’m like 85% done my Christmas shopping already.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 9-8-4 51.3% 98.23 27.9% 80.0%
New York Islanders 16-6-0 54.0% 99.93 20.5% 73.8%

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isles

The New York Islanders are really good, and the Washington Capitals lost their last game to the Buffalo Sabres. The Caps’ best possession player is sidelined with injury, and the Isles are gonna start a goalie who is 100-percent comfortable going up against his old team.

This would be a big road win if the Caps can pull it off. 7 PM on CSN Plus. Your boy Chris Gordon will be covering the game for RMNB solo.

Team Record Possession PDO Power Play Penalty Kill
Washington Capitals 9-8-3 52.69% 98.22 25.4% 82.0%
New York Islanders 15-6-0 54.53% 100.14 18.8% 76.2%

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