Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 3/18/12

A little more than a week ago, an article entitled “The Washington Capitals — Hanging By A Thread” chronicled half a dozen reasons why the Capitals playoff chances were fading quickly.  Since that date, there’s been little, if any reason, to change that opinion.  There are certainly those who will argue that over the period since the 9th of March, the Capitals have a 3-1 record.  However, the wins and losses — while encouraging — don’t come close to telling the whole story.

Let’s bore down into some of the details of those four games:

  • Three of the four games played since March 9th were against teams below the Capitals in the Eastern Conference standings (Toronto, New York Islanders, and Winnipeg).
  • The Caps were outshot in three of the four games.  In the fourth, the Capitals managed to equal the Islanders’ 23 shot total.
  • Washington has collected almost twice as many penalties as their opponents — 30 penalty minutes for Washington versus 16 for the opposition.
  • Every one of the four teams played in the last week has out-hit Washington — some by dramatic margins.

But even those numbers and statistics don’t explain why people are beginning to wonder if the Capitals even have the heart to make it to the playoffs.  All one has to do is watch the full 60 minutes of any one of Washington’s recent games in order to see reasons to worry.  A number of the Capitals appear to simply be going through the motions.  Not so much, at least in the opinion of this correspondent, the young players.  Marcus Johansson, Mathieu Perrault, Dmitry Orlov, Karl Alzner, John Carlson, and others of that experience level are working hard every single shift.  It’s sad, however, that the highest paid ‘stars’ are not.  Watching the Capitals captain simply wave his stick in a half-hearted fashion while on defense is symbolic of what’s been ailing the Capitals all year long.

Bruce Boudreau wasn’t able get the Capitals to stop reading their press clippings and start playing the gritty hockey needed for long-term success.  In the end, it cost him his job.  Thus far, Dale Hunter hasn’t either.

It’s truly disheartening to watch a team with as much talent as the Caps continue to implode.  But, unless every single player begins to play with the intensity and drive of their rookie teammates, the plunge past the bottom playoff position will continue until it’s too late to recover.

Here’s hoping that something will cause the alarm clock to go off in the Capitals locker room — soon!

Let’s Go Caps

This article first appeared on isportsweb.com and was syndicated with permission.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Mike Golic denies report of ‘icy’ relationship with Mike Greenberg

Report: Ricky Rubio, Timberwolves ready to move on

Ben McAdoo: ‘No accuracy’ to Victor Cruz’s sabotage claims

Chip Kelly joining ESPN in analyst role

Terry Collins addresses Mets’ gag order on player injuries

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

LeBron never believed he could get to Jordan’s level

Sam Mitchell reportedly candidate to join Pelicans’ coaching staff

Warriors GM indicates Steve Kerr still isn’t ready to return

Taylor Hall says it was “nice to finally see” the Edmonton Oilers eliminated

Report: Jets to hire female defensive backs coach

Vince Young officially inks contract with CFL team

Box Score 5/26: Bring on the Finals

Kicking It: East is East, and West is West

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

It’s our civic duty to stop attending Super Bowls in new stadiums

Box Score 5/25: The Cavaliers look to close out the Celtics

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

Box Score 5/24: Craig Anderson saves the Senators

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

Box Score 5/23: Preds, Warriors move on to respective Finals

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Kicking It: East is East, and West is West

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker