With the NHL Trade Deadline 2 weeks away, the playoff races are beginning to take shape around the NHL. The games are becoming more intense, and every point up for grabs down the stretch is critical. After a brief 1-1 home stint, the Capitals hit the road for a 4-game road trip. The Capitals will see a heavy dose of the Central Division over the next week. Their first stop is in Winnipeg on Tuesday evening. Puck drop is at 8 PM ET on NBC Sports Washington.
The Jets are in a competitive Central Division race with Nashville, St. Louis, and Dallas. Only 5 points separates these 4 clubs in the standings.
The Jets are currently in the middle of a 10-game homestand. They have gone 3-2-1 so far on this lengthy home stint. They have dropped their last 2 games at home to St. Louis and the New York Rangers.
Leading the way for the Jets is forward Blake Wheeler. Wheeler, 31, has recorded 14 goals and 60 points in 56 games. He has netted 4 points in his last 4 games. Connor Hellebuyck has taken the top spot in net for the Jets in 2017-18. Hellebuyck is having an outstanding season. He has recorded 28 wins, a 2.35 GAA, and .923 SV%.
The Jets have plenty of young talented players. Young forwards Patrik Laine and Nikolaj Ehlers seem to make the NHL’s highlight reels every night with their incredible skating and awesome goal scoring. Laine currently leads all Jets skaters with 25 goals.
Despite their last couple of losses at home, the Jets are dominating the opposition on home ice. They have won 20 out of 27 games at the very noisy Bell MTS Place this season.
The Capitals played one of their worst periods of hockey all season against Detroit on Sunday, but followed it up with one of their best periods of hockey.
The Capitals fourth line had a very good performance for the Capitals, and it prompted Barry Trotz to have that line out on the ice late in the third period on Sunday. Jay Beagle recorded 2 assists in the game versus the Wings.
The Capitals are set to embark on a 4-game road trip. After the trip to Winnipeg, the Capitals will visit Minnesota, Chicago, and Buffalo. The Capitals’ Dads will take part on this road trip, as they will join the team in Minnesota and Chicago.
Caps will have their dads/mentors with them for the Minnesota and Chicago stops.
— Isabelle Khurshudyan (@ikhurshudyan) February 12, 2018
Some good news for the Capitals is that Nicklas Backstrom is heating up. He recorded his 200th career goal against Columbus last Tuesday, and netted another goal against Detroit on Sunday. He has 3 goals and 4 points in his last 4 games.
Here is Jay Beagle reflecting on the Capitals performance on Sunday versus Detroit:
“Obviously a lot was said. That’s not good enough.” — Jay Beagle on the #Caps’ second period Sunday. Beagle recorded two assists for his second multi-point effort of the season. pic.twitter.com/FLlwO7RuwA
— Tarik El-Bashir⌨🎙🏒 (@TarikNBCS) February 11, 2018
A LOOK BACK IN TIME
Back on November 1, 2016, the Capitals visited the Jets. The Capitals claimed a 3-2 victory in that game. Two nights later in Washington, the Capitals claimed a 4-3 overtime victory against the Jets.
By: George Foussekis