Friday, February 15, 2008

Game #59 Washington Capitals at Florida Panthers

Where: Bank Atlantic Center, Sunrise, FL

When: February 15, 2008, 7:30 PM

History:
Caps Record on this Date: 7-9-2-1
Caps Game 59 Record: 10-16-4-1
All-Time vs. FLA: 34-28-9-6
Last Season vs. FLA: 3-3-2
Last Meeting: 1/19/08, WAS 5 FLA 3

This Year:
WAS Record: 27-25-6
Standings Points: 60
Division Rank: 2nd
Conference Rank: 10th
Last Game: 2/13/08, WAS 2 ATL 3 (OT-SO)
Streak: Loss 1

FLA Record: 26-27-6
Standings Points: 58
Division Rank: 4th
Conference Rank: 13th
Last Game: 2/13/2008, FLA 1 MON 2 (OT)
Streak: Loss 2

Game 1: 11/15/07, WAS 1 FLA 2
Game 2: 11/19/07, WAS 3 FLA 4
Game 3: 11/28/07, WAS 1 FLA 2 (OT-SO)
Game 4: 12/1/07, WAS 2 FLA 1
Game 5: 1/19/08, WAS 5 FLA 3

Probable Line-Ups:
Washington

Forward Line 1: 8 OVECHKIN, 19 BACKSTROM, 25 KOZLOV
Forward Line 2: 28 SEMIN, 21 LAICH, 43 FLEISCHMANN
Forward Line 3: 53 LAING, 39 STECKEL, 10 BRADLEY
Forward Line 4: 87 BRASHEAR, 15 GORDON, 14 FEHR
Defense Pair 1: 26 MORRISONN, 52 GREEN
Defense Pair 2: 23 JURCINA, 44 EMINGER
Defense Pair 3: 4 ERSKINE, 55 SCHULTZ
Goalie: 37 KOLZIG
Back-up Goalie: 1 JOHNSON

Florida
Forward Line 1: 18 PELTONEN, 12 JOKINEN, 53 MCLEAN
Forward Line 2: 10 BOOTH, 54 KREPS, 16 HORTON
Forward Line 3: 11 CAMPBELL, 51 GLOBKE, 45 BRINE
Forward Line 4: 37 GLASS, 64 MEYER, 7 MONTADOR
Defense Pair 1: 4 BOUWMEESTAR, 5 ALLEN
Defense Pair 2: 24 SALEI, 22 CULLIMORE
Defense Pair 3: 21 MURPHY, 2 MEZEI,
Goalie: 29 VOKOUN
Back-up Goalie: 31 ANDERSON

Injuries:
Washington – 17 CLARK (groin) DTD, 92 NYLANDER (shoulder) IR, 2 POTHIER (head) IR, 3 POTI (leg) DTD
Florida – 85 OLESZ (hand) IR, 17 MURRAY (shoulder) IR, 14 DVORAK (broken fingers) IR, 9 WEISS (flu) DTD, 27 WELCH (shoulder) IR, 26 VAN RYN (wrist) IR, 15 STUMPEL (shoulder) IR, 20 ZEDNIK (neck laceration) IR

Caps Milestones:
Viktor Kozlov needs 1 assists to reach 300 for his career
Donald Brashear needs 2 Points to reach 200 for his career
Matt Pettinger needs 2 Points to reach 100 for his career

Preview:
Carolina’s win last night put them in 1st place and 2 points in front of the Capitals. A win in Florida tonight would draw them into a tie with the Caps still having a game in hand. The Caps have been playing good hockey lately but not great hockey. They gutted out a point against Atlanta on Wednesday but have been involved in one goal games 10 of their last 13. Look for the Caps to try and put a full game together. Their even strength play has been excellent but their special teams are not where they need to be. If they can put that component together then watch out. Florida is in a tough place following an overtime loss in Montreal Wednesday. With that said they are only 2 points behind the Caps and got some good news as Richard Zednik is set to be released from the hospital on Saturday. This should be a spirited affair with plenty of scoring, but mostly by the Caps, I think.

Joe’s prediction: Caps 5 FLA 2

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