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Wednesday February 3, 2010 8:44 pm

Capitals extend franchise-record streak

Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: Editorial, NHL,

Alex OvechkinWhat’s worse than chasing a team who is in first place? Chasing them when they were in first before starting an 11-game winning streak. That’s the challenge facing everybody in the Eastern Conference not named the Washington Capitals. The Caps beat the Bruins on Tuesday 4-1, running their winning streak to a franchise-best 11 games, breaking a record set in 1984. They now have a 10-point lead over the second-place New Jersey Devils, and with the way things are going, you may as well hand them the Prince of Wales Trophy now.

The biggest reason the Capitals are doing so well is obviously Alex Ovechkin. With 36 goals (3rd in the league) and 41 assists (5th in the league) for 77 points (2nd in the league), the captain is leading his team through what may be his franchise’s greatest era. The iron man plays exceptional hockey every night and you can only expect him to raise his game in the playoffs. There’ll be no embarrassing loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins this year.

Capitals goalie Jose Theodore, who has played the lion’s share of games this season, gave up a goal in the first period, but shut the door from that point on. He made 41 saves overall, including a penalty shot. He lowered his goals against average to 2.76 and raised his save percentage to .910. His up-and-down play with the Capitals has been a source of frustration, but his most recent accomplishment with the team will be an honor that won’t be soon forgotten.

During this winning streak, the Caps have outscored opponents 52-22, and haven’t allowed more than two goals in their last six games. Their first win was a 5-4 shootout victory against Florida, a game they came back from being down 4-1, but since then they have won 10 straight in regulation time. Years ago people said that Washington was on the verge of being a great team; they just needed one or two pieces and some experience. Well, those pieces are there. Years have passed. Washington is dominating the East.



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