Capitals 3, Devils 2
Scoresheet - Wash Post
Quintin Laing is known mostly for his hard work, blocking shots and his defensive capabilities. But it was his offense that gave the Capitals a win against a team that had just beat them 3 nights before by the same tally. Bruce Boudreau's critique in this game was a complete 180 turn around from that night they lost in New Jersey. Apparently so did the Capitals' game.
Laing scored his first ever NHL goal and the team made sure it was a game winning goal as the Capitals gave the streaky Devils their second straight loss. Jeff Schultz and Nick Backstom also scored for the Caps that have now won two in a row.
The Capitals definitely had a step on the Devils in this one from the start. While most NJ fans would claim they were robbed from a goal that was disallowed, the Caps could have said the same on a quick whistle with Tomas Fleischmann on the doorstep to shove the puck under Kevin Weekes.
The Caps' forecheck was a thing of beauty tonight and the line of Matt Bradley, Donald Brashear and Backstrom has created havoc for the opponents defense in their zone. Also looking better is Alex Semin. His speed is coming back and his stick handling looks okay. Semin has to improve on his shots though, they look a little sloppy and slow for someone who can rip the puck pretty well. He is starting to look more and more of the Semin of old.
If the LA Kings lose, the Caps could be tied for last place rather than holding the bottom rung. The Kings play Vancouver tonight and have stalled at 24 points. The Caps just make 24 with their win tonight. However they are still on the bottom of the Eastern Conference. They are just 8 points, 4 games from claiming a playoff spot at 8th place (32 points). Of course all of those teams ahead of the Caps would have to lose their games until then. It ain't over 'til it's over.
Update: No such luck for the Capitals, the LA Kings beat the Vancouver Canucks 4 - 2 leaving the Caps still at sole possession of last place in the league with 24 points.