Well, last night's Caps game was not approached with any optimism. In addition to all the problems seen the night before, Erskine (unknown) and Laich (wonky groin, again) were both out with injuries as well. So the recently-acquired Brown was called up, as was Schilling.
The result? About what you'd expect; the team looked not-good to horrible in every section of the ice. Worse, they looked worst in the defensive end, where it's most important to be together. Coverage was terrible, there was no structure, and players were even getting in Holtby's way.
There's just no way to sugarcoat it. They played like a very bad team, and were lucky that the score was as close as it was.
In fact, they looked so bad that I even fell asleep through much of the third period (that two-goal margin never seemed surmountable).
Fenwick, 5-on-5 close, was 26% for the team. It didn't feel that close.
There was some not-great officiating (Thornton got away with several cross-checks and high sticks, while Washington got called for a ticky-tack play that resulted in Boston's first goal), but I can't say as that changed the course of the game. The only difference that would have made was how much of the game was played, 5-on-5 close.
It would be nice if that concluded the tough part of Washington's schedule, but no. There's still a lot of that remaining. Next up is Phoenix on Saturday, as Washington sees several familiar faces (Erat, Ribeiro, Halpern). Let's hope some people get healthy, and it goes a bit better.
If nothing else, can we see Schmidt taking Erskine's place instead of Schilling? And it will be good to see Orlov back.
Oates, can we at least see some compete level? Rolling over and playing dead is not what we want to see, even if they're going to be losing.