Week 5 Recap: Another Pointless Week

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Posted February 15, 2021

Nicklas Backstrom has been one of the few bright spots for the Caps in the past couple of weeks. (Caps Outsider)

As if COVID hasn’t affected the season enough, the Caps had another setback this past week as three of the four games, including one against the Flyers and two against the Sabres, were postponed due to safety issues concerning the other teams. 

Therefore, the Caps got an an unexpected six day break before a third matchup with the Penguins,  after the first two ended in shootouts back in January.

Unfortunately for the Caps, poor play against Pittsburgh continued. Despite a healthy squad, the Penguins won their third straight game against Washington, 6-3. 

The Caps took an early in the first when Evgeny Kuznetsov – in his first game since being on COVID protocol, got credited with a goal that a defender deflected. That lead was short-lived, however, as the Penguins scored twice, and took a 4-2 lead late into the second period.

Nicklas Backstrom’s goal late in the period brought Washington within one and even made him the fourth Capitals player in franchise history to net 250 career goals. However, it was still not enough as the Penguins scored two empty-netters to clinch the 6-3 win.

It was the fourth consecutive loss for the Caps, after they started the season with at least a point in the first nine games. 

The Caps’ lead in the East Division has crumbled and now they’re in fourth with 15 points.

In order to stay competitive in the East Division playoff race, the Caps will need to regroup quickly. Overall, the Caps have looked aggressive and competitive, but the defense and goaltending has been lackluster (13 goals allowed in past two games). 

The Caps begin their next week of play on Tuesday against the Penguins back at PPG Paints Arena, then will return to home on Thursday to play Buffalo for the start of a five-game home-stretch. 

The week will end with the Caps hosting the Rangers on Saturday and Sunday for a back-to-back. Washington will look to pick up their first win against the Rangers after falling short a couple weeks ago.