Believe it or not, the Washington Capitals have plowed through nearly a quarter of their schedule already (didn't Rookie Camp end, like, last week?). And for Caps fans - who wake up this morning to see their team atop the Eastern Conference standings (and with the League's fewest regulation losses) - most of the first quarter of the season has been pretty enjoyable, at least from an entertainment standpoint.
How so? Besides the ever-entertaining cast of characters donning the red, white and blue on a nightly basis, the Caps have been in every game they've played and have kept fans on the edges of their seats... when they're not standing up cheering goals, that is (and at bargain prices, no less).
Consider that the Caps have played just over 1,097 minutes of hockey this season. For a shade over 223 of those minutes, they've had a lead of two goals or more and have been down two goals (but never more) for just under 14 minutes (including last night's stretch of 6:48 down a pair). What that means is that approximately 20% of the time this season, the Caps have had a cushioned lead, 79% of the time they've been either up or down a goal or tied, and just over 1% of the time, they've been behind by more than one Alex Ovechkin one-timer or Alex Semin laser.
The team's win percentage in one-goal games leaves something to be desired, but the Caps are a combined 6-0-0 in games decided by two or more goals and are one of only five teams yet to lose a two-goal game, one of only two not to get blown out by three or more, and the only one not to be beaten by two or more yet this season.
So while the Caps still have a lot to work on as a team, one thing they seem to have down pat is keeping their fans engaged game-to-game... even if some of that late-game excitement is self-created (and not in a good way).