Paul Stastny, Kevin Shattenkirk

Time to worry in Washington? Caps drop their fifth straight game, Avs win 3-2

Another game and another tough loss for the Washington Capitals. The Caps losing streak now sits at five games after dropping a tough game against the visiting Colorado Avalanche 3-2. It’s not without trying tonight that the Caps lost. They kept Avalanche goalie Craig Anderson more than busy with 42 shots on goal but Anderson was equal to the task stopping 40 shots.

Colorado set the tone early in the first getting goals from Kevin Shattenkirk and Ryan Wilson. Mike Knuble’s goal in the first period sandwiched between Colorado goals kept the game close at 2-1, but Paul Stastny’s second period goal provided the game-deciding tally. Former Avalanche forward Matt Hendricks scored in the third to cut the lead to 3-2 but they’d get no closer. Michal Neuvirth stopped 23 in the loss.

For Washington, the frustration is building and the finger should be pointed towards the Capitals offense. In their five-game streak, they’ve scored just eight goals. Meanwhile, the goaltending has been average giving up 15 goals, good for three per game. With the Caps scoring the third most goals in the NHL, giving up three a game shouldn’t be too much to overcome but it’s still not great. For a team that’s going to contend for the Stanley Cup they need to do better.

It’s a long season, of course, but this kind of run does a lot to wear on one’s confidence and after a year that ended earlier than expected last season, fans are getting anxious.

Derek Roy signs in Swiss league

Derek Roy, Jeremy Smith, Chris Kelly
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Derek Roy has finally found work — but it’s not in the NHL.

Roy, who spent the entire preseason in Washington’s camp on a PTO, has signed with SC Bern of Switzerland’s National League A, the club announced on Friday.

The news comes after Roy narrowly missed out on making the Caps roster, and just one year after he had something of a bounce-back campaign in Edmonton, scoring 22 points in 46 games while developing chemistry with young winger Nail Yakupov.

A 12-year NHL veteran, Roy is one of the more prominent names to be squeezed out of work this season, and head overseas. The 31-year-old has scored over 500 points in 738 career contests, and has twice represented Canada at the World Hockey Championships.

With Bern, Roy will play on one of Switzerland’s stronger teams, alongside a trio of ex-NHLers: Chuck Kobasew, Andrew Ebbett and Cory Conacher.

Lehner’s injury ‘doesn’t look like it’s short term’

Robin Lehner
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Robin Lehner might not be back anytime soon.

Making his debut with the Buffalo Sabres, the 24-year-old goaltender couldn’t complete Thursday’s game against his former squad, the Ottawa Senators, due to what has now been revealed to be a right leg injury.

When he left the arena, he was wearing a walking boot on that nearly went up to his knee.

“It doesn’t look like it’s short term,” Sabres coach Dan Bylsma told the Buffalo News. “It’s more than day-to-day at this point, but we need to evaluate further.”

It’s a rocky start to what’s an important campaign for Lehner. He has been given an opportunity to demonstrate that he’s ready to be a starting goaltender after being acquired by the Sabres over the summer, but it looks like that will have to be postponed.

While he’s sidelined, Chad Johnson is likely to be leaned on heavily.