Capitals Lose To Islanders 5-3
Coming off a 5-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes, the Capitals were looking to go back to DC with a three game winning streak. Instead, they lost 5-3. This was a slightly frustrating game for many Capitals fans, and if you look at the score sheet, it’s easy to see why.
Tomas Vokoun started off very strong in the first period, but was off his game in the second and third periods. He let in four relatively easy goals that he usually gets. He blew a two goal lead. He is at fault for this loss, but sometimes goalies have off nights. Happens to the best of them. Vokoun is a professional, he knows he has to do better, and I’m extremely confident that he will do better. If he does this consistently, I’ll get worried.
The Capitals in general lacked energy tonight. I’m sure that playing on back to back nights, including traveling from Carolina to NY, had a lot to do with it. The Islanders were fresh and energized, and they really showed it. Ovechkin was the only Capital who played with energy tonight. He got on quite a few breakaways and really forced Rick DiPietro to make some really good saves. He seemed to be thrown off his game a little bit after he missed just high on a breakaway chance in the second period.
I think this loss can fall on one person: Bruce Boudreau. I have no idea why Vokoun was starting in New York, where he has never had success. I would have started Vokoun on Friday night, and Neuvrith (who has looked very good against the Islanders in his three games against them) tonight. Also, he needs to keep the lines consistent. Unless injuries happen or somebody is REALLY struggling, your lines should stay pretty much the same and not be shuffled around.
I’m a little disappointed in tonight’s game, but at the end of the day, I can’t be upset at this team. They’re still 9-3, and they’re still one point behind the conference lead despite playing in two fewer games. The Capitals come back to DC to play the Dallas Stars on Tuesday. All signs point to Mike Green being ready by then.
So let’s review:
1. Tomas Vokoun is still really good, even Patrick Roy had his rough patches.
2. Boudreau, for the love of Pete, keep the lines consistent and don’t break up the third line ever again.
3. Breathe in, breathe out.