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The Narrative: Slow Starts, Neuvirth and Laughton

Three things we're talking about today when we're talking about the Caps

Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images

1. As we've touched on repeatedly, the Caps played an 82-game regular-season and came out as the League's 13th-best first period team by score-adjusted five-on-five Corsi-For percentage (50.3), 18th-best by five-on-five goal differential (-5) and 25th-best by five-on-five penalty differential (-10). If you'd expected that to change when the playoffs started, apparently you'd have been wrong - it's been an issue through four games (they've been outshot 53-30 and have taken nine penalties in the four opening stanzas) and was again last night:


2. The Caps' inability to put any real early pressure on Michal Neuvirth allowed the Czech netminder to get into a game-stealing groove, and that's exactly what he did:


3. In what was the scariest moment in a Caps game (or just about any game) in quite some time, Scott Laughton took an ugly spill into the end boards during the first period and had to be stretchered off the ice:

Great news, of course, and we hope he makes a full and speedy recovery... and has better luck with his health when he faces Washington in the future: