Capitals Look to Rebound vs. Bruins

Posted October 10, 2014

Bruins fans still hate Joel Ward. (Caps Outsider)

The Washington Capitals (0-0-1, 1 pts) opened their 2014-2015 regular season slate Thursday night against the Montreal Canadiens (2-0-0, 4 pts). Caps fans all around the area watched with high hopes as their new look team took to the ice for their regular season opener. The Capitals suffered a crushing 2-1 defeat (their third straight season opening loss) in shootout to the Canadiens, after leading 1-0 for much of the game following rookie André Burakovsky’s first NHL goal in his first NHL game (becoming the first Capitals player to score his first goal in his NHL debut since Alex Ovechkin on Oct. 5, 2005).

I was personally impressed with how improved the defense of the Caps looked for large stretches of this game under new coach Barry Trotz’s system, even though the offense has to improve on finishing an opponent off when getting a lead and dominating possession as they did for the majority of the game. “You have them on the floor, and you couldn’t just knock them out,” Trotz said. “They were resilient, and they sort of crawled their way back into the game. Shame on us we couldn’t bury them.”

The Caps now travel to Boston to play the Bruins (1-1-0, 2pts) Saturday night at TD Garden. The Bruins are also coming off of a 2-1 loss that they suffered to the Detroit Red Wings Thursday night. A few things to look for in this game are: 1. How do the Capitals defend some of Boston’s dynamic players such as Patrice Bergeron, Milan Lucic, and Zdeno Chara?, 2. Will the offense do a better job of adding to their lead if they go up 1-0?, and 3. Will another youngster step up for the Caps or will the usual stars like Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom be the game breakers?

I am going into this game with optimism, as I would love to see how the Caps respond to their shootout loss and their first road game of the season with the collection of young players they now have on the team. Let’s hope they bounce back and get their first win of the season to get the ball rolling for a successful year.