Power Rankings Roundup: Week 16

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 24: Mathieu Perreault #85 of the Washington Capitals celebrates with teammates after scoring his third goal of the game against the Boston Bruins at the Verizon Center on January 24, 2012 in Washington, DC. Washington won the game 5-3. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

Our weekly temperature-taking of the mainstream media's opinions on the Washington Capitals.

Outlet This Week Last Week What They're Saying
13 15 The Capitals helped their cause entering the break by plucking three-out-four points in games against Pittsburgh and Boston.
13 12 Surprising fact: Sunday's 4-3 loss to the Penguins was the first time this season that Alex Ovechkin had three points in a single game this season.
16 13 Weekend losses to Carolina and Pittsburgh (in overtime) suggest reports that the Caps are back might be slightly premature.
15 14 The Caps have shown some resiliency after having lost Nicklas Backstrom (concussion) and Mike Green (abdominal surgery). They’ll need production from their best players (Alex Ovechkin, Alex Semin) when Boston visits Tuesday. Ed. note: No they won't.
12 11 Caps have East's most impressive home record (17-6-1), but still struggle on the road (8-13-2)
14 11 What a weird week. The Caps lose 3-0 twice to the Isles and 'Canes, win 3-0 vs. Montreal, then lose a great game in OT vs. Pittsburgh. They still look close to breaking out.
15 14 They blew a win Sunday in Pittsburgh, and have to play their next three without Alex Ovechkin, who was suspended Monday by the NHL for his hit on Zbynek Michalek. You want to applaud Ovie for his old-school, rough-and-tumble style of play. On the other hand, you can't condone that kind of hit at all, and now it puts his team at a disadvantage right when it was starting to show signs of life again. It's just been that kind of season for the Caps, but they do remain in the East's top eight, which is better than a couple weeks ago.
17 18 Think the Caps miss C Nicklas Backstrom? They're averaging 20.4 shots per game in the last eight, going 4-3-1 in that time. Tough to be a high-scoring offence without generating more shots than that.
Key Injuries: C Nicklas Backstrom (concussion), D Mike Green (groin).

Click on logos for links to full power rankings.

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