Saturday, November 15, 2014

November 14th Devils 1 - Capitals 0 at Verizon Center, Look Ahead to Tonight's Game in Saint Louis

As has been well chronicled over at Japer's Rink and The Peerless Prognosticator, last night at Verizon Center we watched a game that ended, unfortunately in a "No Point" night for the Capitals.  That of course meant that this morning if you checked the NHL standings the Capitals are once again "on the wrong side of the bubble" with a mere 17 points in 16 games, fourth in the Metropolitan Division and a 4-5-1 record in their last 10 games.  So that's something I'd sum up as "unfortunate" .. unfortunate indeed as the Caps didn't play poorly last night, loosing 1-0 in regulation on a poorly considered chance taken by Braden Holtby on a night when otherwise he did more than what should have been required by him to secure two points for his team - notch a 0.964 SV%.

 It was a night when I hated being right.  Yesterday musing about the game, I figured that it might take something like  this, in fact I wrote:
"... or fail to play their game well a full sixty minutes, or Corey Schneider has a totally "lights out" night the Devils could win this game so the Caps cannot fail to play hard and smart for all sixty minutes."
In fact that's what happened last night, the Caps slowed their game to New Jersey's 33 1/3 RPM speed and the New jersey team defense and Corey Schneider had a "lights out night" as a result.  It really did only take one mistake and that was because the Caps let NJ dictate the pace of play and didn't score, not even on four power plays.  It hurts more because had the Caps won they'd be 5-4-1 in their last 10 and still on the "right side" of the bubble.  There's really  not much more to be said.  The team knows they needed to want it more and to have worked both smarter and harder against New Jersey.  The good news is the Caps don't have a lot of time to dwell on last night's game as they take on the Saint Louis in the first of a three game road trip tonight under the arch just across the Mississippi River.  The Blues are a red hot 9-1-0 in their last ten games and sit atop the Central Division with 23 points and 9 ROW.

The Peerless is calling for a 3-2 Caps victory.  Me I'm just hoping, hoping for a Caps 2 point night of any kind.  I do think the Caps could win but the Blues are rested after beating Nashville, 4-3 on Thursday.   I just don't see this being a low scoring affair though there's too much offensive talent on both sides of the ice.  The Caps need it more, I hope they want it more and continue to play well.


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