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The Noon Number: Hold On

A look at some recent - and costly - lapses.

Arizona Coyotes v Washington Capitals Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

.600 - The Capitals’ win percentage when leading games after two periods, which puts them in the bottom-third of the league in that department. The Caps have been up after the first two periods five times this season (which is about average) and were off to a good start when it came to holding those leads, having won their first three such games.

They’ve faltered of late, though, with two of their last three losses coming in games in which they were up after 40 minutes - including an unacceptable regulation loss Saturday night, where the Coyotes’ game-winner was scored with under a minute left in the third.

Not surprisingly, their inability to hang on to a lead has tracked along with their ongoing injury woes, and their offense has slowed as games go on (to say nothing of overall goal production, which has fallen off a cliff as well). The Caps have scored just three third-period goals over the last six games, and two of those were in the same game (the win over the Predators in Nashville).