Ebene News – UA – Capitals see opportunity to gain momentum after losing streak ends

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In the Washington Capitals’ recent four-game slippage, there was no single common denominator of losses In some clashes they were eliminated In others the draw controls went in the direction of the opponent

But even as coach Peter Laviolette glanced up at the scoreboard to see Washington on the short end of a losing quartet, there were signs he found encouraging – the physicality or the time of the offensive zone

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That is until Tuesday night, when the Capitals ignored their losing streak to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins for the first time in four games this season In a condensed schedule of 56 games and competing in the Stacked East Division, Washington’s start and stop performances leave the team in the middle of the standings

But if there’s a time to put in an effort, the season quarterback is as good as any.A win – the Capitals’ first this month – doesn’t cure everything It could be a turning point, however

“I think this is our most complete game of the year”, winger TJ Oshie said “Something to be happy, to build and to move forward here”

When Washington lost to Pittsburgh on Sunday, winger Jakub Vrana said there appeared to be at least one period per game when the team fell asleep That drop in the lead proved costly twice in a four-game losing streak; the Capitals lost a three-goal lead to the Bruins in February 1 and a two-goal advantage to the Flyers on February 7

A new head coach, shortened training camp and lack of exhibition games meant the team would face a learning curve heading into the season, but the Capitals did not suffer a loss regulation in the first nine games

Then the defeat came, upsetting what had been a dazzling start But for Laviolette, the level of play produced in the losses has often improved compared to the victories at the start of the season

“We’re going in the right direction,” winger Tom Wilson said ahead of Tuesday’s win. “But that being said, right now it’s not good enough You have to get the win”

The positives visible in the losses came together as one in Tuesday’s win, with 42 shots, a season-high Washington finished tied with Pittsburgh in faceoff wins and held the puck for extended periods in the offensive zone

Goalkeeper Vitek Vanecek also rebounded after a tough spell, stopping 26 of 27 shots he faced while maintaining a shutout for over 55 minutes

The victory also put the Capitals ahead of the Penguins in the standings, holding the fourth seed in the Eastern Division – last place in the playoffs

There are still three quarters of the season to play, but the games on the horizon are an opportunity to consolidate this position, starting with Thursday’s game against the Buffalo Sabers

The Capitals’ next three opponents – the Sabers, New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils – control the bottom three places in the division standings The Devils and Sabers recently returned from coronavirus-related layoffs, and the Rangers are on a four-game losing streak

So even if a win doesn’t mean Washington’s season is back on track, the opportunity is there to continue moving up the rankings – even if Laviolette preaches the process rather than the product

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“It’s something to build on, it’s just a step in the right direction,” said Laviolette “We have some tough games ahead, but I think at this point you’re just trying to build that on ice, that identity, and not focus so much on results”

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Washington Capitals, Buffalo Sabers, National Hockey League, New York Islanders

Ebene News – UA – Capitals see opportunity to gain momentum after end of the losing streak

Source: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2021/feb/17/capitals-see-opportunity-build-momentum-after-losi/