Despite falling behind 3-1, the Washington Capitals topped the Red Wings on Friday in a way that will likely leave Detroit fans queasy: a 4-3 shootout win.
Leaving points on the table
This gives the Red Wings one of the more frustrating five-game losing streaks one can imagine.
They’ve lost two in a row via shootouts and four consecutive games that have gone beyond regulation. It’s hard not to wonder why head coach Mike Babcock isn’t turning to Jonas Gustavsson here and there – Howard’s been in net for the entire losing streak – even if it’s unfair to blame Howard alone.
This current streak isn’t the only bad sign for the Red Wings. They’re squandering points in Hockeytown, as they’re now 0-1-6 in their last seven home games.
Two very different teams after regulation
Detroit received much-needed secondary scoring (Johan Franzen had two goals and one assist), but it wasn’t enough, as Alex Ovechkin helped Washington overcome that third period 3-1 deficit. Ovechkin notched his 15th tally of the season while Michael Latta tied it up with his first career goal.
While the Red Wings leave points on the table, the Capitals have been outstanding at getting the extra one. They’ve won all six of their seven shootouts this season and also notched an OT win against Columbus on Tuesday.
The good times might keep coming for Washington, too. They’ve won six of their last eight overall and will play seven of their next nine games at home.
“Nope,” Dubinsky said. “You know, I’ve played the same way my whole career and I’m not going to change. The next time I have an opportunity to play (Crosby), I’m going to play him hard.”
In case you’re wondering, that next opportunity comes on Dec. 21 in Pittsburgh, assuming that both players are healthy and not suspended.
One can understand Dubinsky’s perspective, although such honesty would be that much more interesting if there’s another incident with Crosby. His initial reaction to the hit was interestingly candid, admitting that his “stick rode up” on his adversary.
Would that stance – which, from a harsher view, might seem flippant to Dubinsky’s critics – open the door for a bigger future bit of a discipline?
Maybe, maybe not … but at least his comments aren’t as inflammatory as what John Tortorella said (at least on the record).
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