When one looks at the stat line from the Washington Capitals’ 2-0 loss to the Dallas Stars on Thursday night, there are not many variations between the two clubs in many areas. The Caps were stonewalled in a back-and-forth contest that saw the home team come away with the victory.
While the two teams finished the night tied with 27 shots apiece, the stellar play of the Stars’ red-hot goaltender Jake Oettinger (5-1-0, 1.17 Goals-Against Average, .960 Save Percentage) kept the Washington skaters from denting the twine.
“Yeah, just couldn’t find one”, forward Dylan Strome said, “I thought we did some good things after the first [period], shut them down pretty well, but couldn’t find a way to capitalize, couple good looks on the power play, but couldn’t cash in tonight. The goalie played well, and the team played well, so give them credit.”
“Yeah it was a little frustrating”, added defenseman Nick Jensen, who skated 18:22 on the night and finished the game a minus-1, “The goalie obviously played really well, but we’re still firm believers that if you can’t see the puck, you’re not going to save it.”
The Capitals are 4-4-0 on the young season, and have on more than a few occasions found themselves ahead in a contest before faltering and allowing the other club to come back, or down early and picking up their play later in the game.
“I think it’s kind of been how the season has been going right now”, said Jensen, “We kind of came out a little slow in the first, and we seem to have trouble putting 60 minutes together. Our defense wasn’t great in the first, I think it got a little better in the second and third but there’s still just those odd times we’re giving up those Grade A chances that we’ve gotta keep tightening up, we got to make it really hard to get to the net and get opportunities at our net front.”
The overall consensus among the team seems to be maintaining a consistent effort on a nightly basis to give themselves a chance to win. Although they were shutout, the team is not entirely displeased with the game.
“Preparation always goes into it but I don’t necessarily think it’s we’re starting bad. We had a great start and Ottawa and we didn’t finish strong, so I think it’s been a lack of finishing 60 minutes worth of game”, said Jensen.
“We did”, Head Coach Peter Laviolette responded when asked about the Capitals’ time in the Dallas zone, “I mean they’re looking, trying to find the right shot or right seam for what has been working on most nights, tonight it didn’t want to go.”
“Not frustrating”, right wing T.J. Oshie said coolly, “Under 10 games in the regular season so it’s a long season, but we’ll take a look at some film here, and we obviously have to do a better job of getting more on the inside whether that’s creating chances off the rush, off the forecheck or off some o-zone play. They also did a good job; they worked hard in their d-zone, they were closing, they were boxing us out. They made it tough on us, but we can be better down there.”
“…All in all not a full 60, but there were definitely moments where we did a good job and we limited them and in the second period to not get too many scoring chances but just need to put in a full 60, we’ve got two more games on the road here, which is always a good place to figure out your game.”
By Michael Fleetwood
Hm, really just moments, the team membres are better one by one that the team itself. The coach should solve this issue or leaving, but soon…
“Although they were shutout, the team is not entirely displeased with the game.”
I was. I felt that we beat ourselves.