The red-hot New York Rangers came into Verizon Center riding a five-game win streak on Wednesday night, but they left the building with a losing streak after being handled by Alex Semin and the Caps 4-1.
Semin scored twice and Troy Brouwer netted the game-winner in the second period to lead the Washington Capitals over the Eastern Conference-leading Rangers. Marcus Johansson also scored for Washington, starting the scoring in the first period.
Following Johansson's opening goal, Brandon Dubinsky tied the game at 1-1 for the visiting Rangers at the 17:16 mark of the first period when he ripped a wrist shot past the glove side of Vokoun...
Sleepless in Seattle? More like listless in Buffalo for the Washington Capitals the day after Christmas.
Buffalo jumped on the Capitals early with four first period goals from Jason Pominville, Matt Ellis, Christian Erhoff and rookie Brayden McNabb's first NHL tally in route to a 4-2 win over the visiting Caps at First Niagara Center.
The Sabres scored just 51 seconds into the first, keying a period that would doom the Caps despite righting the ship in the second and third by pulling within two. Those goals came from Matt Hendricks, his first of the season late in the second, and Alex Ovechkin on a powerplay in the third.
In the past three games, the Washington Capitals have mustered just three total goals. In that same three-game span, the NHL's leading goal scorer Steven Stamkos has managed four tallies.
The Caps' hunt for offense won't get any easier when they welcome the Nashville Predators to town tonight. The Predators allow just 2.59 goals per game, which ranks in the top half of the NHL in that department.
They also boast one of the league's very best between the pipes in last year's Vezina Runner-up Pekka Rinne. But the Caps catch a break as it will be backup Anders LIndback in net for the Preds tonight as Rinne will get the night off ...
Following their worst game of the season on Monday night against the Philadelphia Flyers, the Washington Capitals rebounded with one of their best games of the season on Thursday night.
Such is life in D.C. for the Capitals, who have struggled after getting out to a 7-0-0 mark to begin the season. Since then, they've changed coaches while experiencing much of the same results, losses.
But Tuesday brought a new low as the Caps were manhandled at home by the Flyers 5-1. The Caps had been 7-0-3 against the Flyers in the past 10 meetings, but fell behind early and looked badly outmatched all game.
Nothing was going to stand in front of the Flyers tonight; not even the absence of the NHL's leading scorer.
With Claude Giroux back in Philadelphia nursing a concussion, the Flyers offense erupted in a 5-1 win over the Washington Capitals on the road. It was the first Flyers win in Washington since the 2009 season.
Stepping into the centering role on the Flyers hottest line was eighth round draft pick Sean Couturier. Without Giroux, the top line didn't skip a beat when Scott Hartnell found twine for the sixth straight game, giving the Flyers an early 1-0 lead.
Hartnell's tally was his 15th on the season, good for second on the Flyers.
But it was also a milestone goal for the 29-year-old left-winner. It was the 200th goal for Hartnell, who tossed a soft shot at the net that got through Washington goalie Thomas Vokoun's five-hole.
The Washington Capitals (12-11-1) haven't played bad under new coach Dale Hunter, but they haven't played well either.
Despite the 1-3 record under their new boss, the Capitals just want to show what they can do when they execute in all aspects of the game, offensively, defensively and in goal.
Caps defenseman Dennis Wideman said it best after practice on Tuesday, "We haven’t been able to put a game together where we get good goaltending, the [defense] plays well and we score goals in a long time."
"We’re not putting everything together right now.”
Under Hunter's lead, the Caps have lost three one-goal games ...
It wasn't news to anyone that the NHL would be setting up a new realignment plan for the 2012-2013 season. Plenty of speculation went into this idea as to how it would effect the current Eastern and Western Conferences. The Winnipeg Jets, although presently in the East, seemed to be a team that would make much more sense in the West. Rumors began to run that the Detroit Red Wings would move to the Eastern Conference, or even quite possibly the Nashville Predators.
The bigger question, and one that still looms over the hearts of many fans out in the desert, is whether or not the Phoenix Coyotes will still be in any Conference next year. They are currently in what seems to be the final year of their lease agreement after almost being relocated this past summer. There's still a good possibility that they might be relocated in the near future as well, but all of that remains in limbo as the 2012 season moves forward.
However, the NHL and it's Board of Governors could not wait to see what happens in Phoenix and passed a very dramatic change to the current alignment. The Eastern and Western Conferences will ultimately be removed next year; the standard two conferences that consist of 15 teams will become four conferences with either seven or eight teams in each one.