With their playoff hopes dwindling with each loss, the Washington Capitals are facing an upcoming stretch of must-win games. Sitting at 7-11-1, Washington is looking to grab their eighth victory of the year against the Winnipeg Jets. This game will take place March 2nd at 3:00 and can be seen on NHL Network.
Washington and Winnipeg did battle earlier in this lockout-shortened season on January 22nd. Taking place at the Verizon Center, the Capitals gave the home fans nothing to cheer about in the first battle between these two Southeast Division rivals. Goalie Braden Holtby struggled mightily as he allowed four goals, one to Jets star winger Evander Kane.
Head Coach Adam Oates will have a tough decision to make as for his starting goalie in Saturday’s mattinee. Braden Holtby is coming off of a game where he let in multiple goals, but it could have been because of fatigue. It was his ninth straight start, and I believe a break will be on the horizon for Holtby. Michal Neuvirth is feeling better after being ill. I expect Oates to allow Neuvirth to make his first start since February 6th.
On the offensive side of the ice, expect the Capitals to continue to score goals. With the exepction of their last 4-1 loss to the Flyers, the offense has been shining for Washington. They had eight goals in the previous two games, and did have success with two in their first game against the Jets.
PLAYER TO WATCH- Mike Ribeiro: Ribeiro leads the team in points with a team high 16 assists. Expect him to set up linemates with great chances against a very average Winnipeg defense.