It felt like a game against Pittsburgh—except for the ending.
The Capitals brought whatever their A game is right now to the ice Thursday against the Pens, but despite holding both Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin pointless, the Capitals finished the game one goal too short.
Journalists buzzed before the game how the Capitals hadn’t lost to the Pens under Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma in regulation during the regular season. His team’s 2-1 victory changed that Thursday.
It goes to show the coaching transition in Washington isn’t going to be the fairy-tale beginning and middle that the last one was. This regime is starting with a grounding dose of reality. But the Caps are sadder and wiser this time around, and they seem to be comfortable figuring out a new way of doing things.
“I think that’s the best jump we’ve had in awhile,” Dennis Wideman said of Thursday’s game. “We still had some confusion … some breakdowns in our own zone. We gave them quite a few shots. We’d like to sh