Washington Capitals defenseman Brenden Dillon told the media prior to their game against the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night (7 PM ET, NBC Sports Washington+), their first in four days, that “All of these games are just so important. … I think every team is only a few points out even if they are out of [the picture].”
He pointed to when the Devils stormed back from a 4-1 deficit at the start of the third period and forced overtime before the Capitals won 5-4 on March 9, the last time that the two teams met. “It doesn’t matter whether you’re playing a New Jersey team or a New York [Islanders] team. … To be prepared and be not caught up will be important for us down this 25-game stretch,” he added.
On preparing his body for the stretch run, the 30-year-old said that “We’ve got to be prepared for anything,” especially with the possibility of the schedule changing due to teams dealing with COVID-19 pauses. “You got to take care of yourself, it’s part of being a pro,” Dillon added.
When asked about the Devils, Dillon replied that “The youthful energy is something where it doesn’t matter if it’s a back-to-back, three [games] in four [nights]. They’re going to come out with legs and hard. … They believe they’re in every game. They have a lot of skill. … We believe in our team.” He thinks that the Capitals have to be prepared for teams to come in viewing their game against the Capitals, the East Division leaders, as a measuring stick one.
Dillon said that “It’s been weird this year” and that the team feels good about their game over the past few weeks but still wants to work up to a full 60-minute game. “It’s going to be a good test to get the train rolling here,” he added.
By Harrison Brown