The Washington Capitals looked every bit the jet-lagged visitor capping off a back-to-back on Tuesday night, watching a fourteen-game point streak die and getting shutout for just the third time all season. Curse ye, vexing Canada!
Here's Tuesday night's Plus/Minus:
Plus: With this regulation loss, the Capitals drop their first game in the originally-designated sixty minutes in fifteen games, falling to 12-1-2.
Minus: Poor stick discipline, the hallmark of tired teams and soon-to-be unemployed porn stars, plagued the Capitals tonight.
And now, this...
Ten more notes on the game:
1. The Washington Capitals finished their 6-1 blowout of the Carolina Hurricanes around 9:30 PM on Monday night. Would they be ready for a tilt against the Ottawa Senators some scant twenty hours later, nearly 600 miles away? (Spoiler Alert: No.)
2. The Capitals went to the power play just thirty seconds into the game. But then Ottawa’s Chris Kelly suffered unto Washington the ultimate embarrassment: a shorthanded goal. It was 1-0 Senators.
3. Then, just two minutes later in front of the cold and probably vaguely poutine-smelling Ottawa crowd, Bobby Ryan ripped one past Philipp Grubauer to make it 2-0 Senators.
4. The vaulted Capitals penalty kill, the third best in the league before tonight, then sacrificed a dinger to the Ottawa onslaught, as Zack Smith popped home a setup on the man advantage.
5. Prayers and crystals out for Dmitry Orlov, who caught a high stick in the face from an Ottawa ruffian that looked.....well, I ain’t sayin’ he meant to do it, but I ain’t sayin’ he ain’t meant to, either. Orlov was visibly shaken up, but would return to the game.
6. That would be it for the scoring, and the buzzer would sound on a 3-0 shutout for the home team.
7. As Alan May pointed out on Twitter, the Capitals really missed Jay Beagle in this game, who was out with an illness (presumably allergic to second-rate national capitals). Chandler Stephenson got the jersey instead, proudly rocking the number eighteen as our own dear Craig Laughlin did. As “Locker” said on the air, “There’s a lot of goals left in that jersey!” Here’s hoping Stephenson gets a chance to pot some.
8. Philipp Grubauer performed with mixed results in the start, and though he gave up three goals, saved at least two or three genuine, honest-to-God breakaways as well. He’s still one of the top ten backup goalies in the NHL, in my personal opinion.
9. The Capitals took entirely too many stick penalties in this game. Would you believe it? It’s hard to win games when you’re playing with one fewer player than your opponent. Each bad poke check, each ill-timed stick lift, is two minutes played at a significant deficit. That matters.
10. The Capitals still sit high atop the Metropolitan Division, and the ass-end of a back-to-back is prime territory for a sneaky whuppin’.
Welp, the fourteen game point streak finally came to an end tonight, but the second half of a back-to-back in a logical place to stumble. Next up is the New Jersey Devils on Thursday at Prudential Center.