NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Sunday, March 30th
(All times Eastern)
Washington Capitals (34-28-12) at Nashville Predators (32-32-11), 8 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Washington Capitals hope to avoid a third straight
setback on Sunday night as they visit the Nashville Predators.
The Capitals carried a six-game point streak (4-0-2) into Saturday afternoon's
meeting with the Atlantic Division-leading Boston Bruins, but failed to pick
up a point in a 4-2 setback.
The loss dropped Washington two points behind the Columbus Blue Jackets and
Detroit Red Wings for the two wild card berths in the Eastern Conference with
eight games to play for all three teams. The Toronto Maple Leafs are even with
the Caps with 80 points, but have played two more games.
Jason Chimera and Evgeny Kuznetsov supplied Washington's two markers, while
Braden Holtby allowed four goals on 36 shots.
"Obviously, it's frustrating. It would have been a huge win for us. But you
have to give the Bruins credit. They're first in the East for a reason," said
Holtby. "It was one of those games. We need to have it no matter what if want
to give ourselves the best chance. Unfortunately we didn't, so we have to move
on and focus on the next game."
The Predators are a longshot to make the postseason as they sit nine points
behind the Phoenix Coyotes for the second wild card spot in the West with
seven games to play.
Nashville had won three of four before suffering a 7-3 setback to the Dallas
Stars on Friday. It was a night to forget for Preds goaltender Pekka Rinne,
who yielded all seven goals on 29 shots.
Michael Del Zotto, Eric Nystrom and Patric Hornqvist all scored for the
"I think we just lacked a little poise," said Nystrom. "They had a lot of
energy and we were just kind of forcing plays in the right places and they did
a great job putting pucks in front of the net. They were getting traffic there
and they had bodies going to the net all night and they got re-direct goals.
We couldn't stop the rush game."
Though Nashville snapped a three-game series home losing streak with a win
over Washington on Nov. 15, 2011, the Capitals have won two straight and seven
of the past eight in this series overall.
That includes a 5-2 win at home on Dec. 7, when Alex Ovechkin was one of five
goal scorers for Washington and Holtby made 34 saves.
Roman Josi had a goal and an assist while Nystrom scored the other goal for
03/30 10:22:01 ET