On March 6th, the Dallas Stars came to town and took on our beloved Washington Capitals. The Caps do not have the greatest record against the Stars. However, they did take the first meeting between these two great teams. The Stars are definitely tough to beat and for good reason. Dallas has a lethal combination of speed and scoring. They have some great scorers with the likes of Tyler Seguin and Patrick Sharp. They are also backed by great goalies. Will the Caps keep their momentum going and get their 16th straight win at home? *Fingers crossed*
The Caps must have had a case of the Monday’s because this game was definitely not their best. Dallas scored less than two minutes in. Despite having an amazing save moments before, the Caps couldn’t keep Dallas off the board. Devin Shore was credited with the Stars first goal. The play was reviewed when Barry Trotz challenged the goal due to goaltender interference. However, the refs on the ice and in the Toronto booth thought that Braden Holtby could’ve made the stop even with a Dallas player on top of him. The 20,000 refs in the Verizon Center stands begged to differ. Dallas never let up and made the Caps pay for their lack of offense and sloppy defense. Dallas leads, 1-0.
The second period was not much better than the first. Dallas scored two more goals; one from Radek Faksa and one from Jason Spezza. After the third goal, Trotz pulled Holtby and replaced him with Phillip Grubauer. Grubi wanted to let Dallas know he was not going to be pushed around and instead drew a penalty and then threw Cody Eakin to the ice with his catching glove. The Caps had a few great chances but could not get anything past Kari Lehtonen. That is until Nicklas Backstrom parked in front of the goal and deflected a pass from Kevin Shattenkirk past the Stars net minder. And on Swedish Heritage Night too—how fitting. Caps still down, 1-3.
Caps seemed to be finally playing with some fire. They were on the power play very early in the third. Despite some great attempts, the Caps could not convert on the PP. They were close to scoring, but close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. After the PP, Caps had 14 shots on goal during their power plays. Dallas had 18 SOG for the game. TJ Oshie decided he wanted to get on the score sheet, so he bent the twine and got the Caps to within one. With 1:55 left in the game, Trotz pulled Grubi for the extra skater. Patrick Sharp would be the one to score though. He sealed the victory for Dallas with an ENG practically from his own goal. Caps lose to Dallas, 4-2. Caps home victory streak ends at 15. Womp womp.
I don’t know what it is about Dallas that the Caps just cannot overcome. They have great speed and great goal scorers. So do the Caps. Why can the Caps NOT beat Dallas? Braden Holtby still has yet to beat the Stars. Dallas is the ONLY team in the NHL Holts does not have a W against. WHAT IS IT ABOUT DALLAS?! The Caps are 44-14-7, with 95 points. Their next game is Thursday, March 9th. That begins the dreaded West Coast road trip. The game starts at 10:30 on the East Coast. Good luck to all fans that can stay awake and actually watch that! Keep the coffee close by! Hopefully the Caps can get back into their groove and win a few games out there.
LET’S GO CAPS!!