Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Game #44 Preview: Washington Capitals at Tampa Bay Lightning


Where: St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa FL

When:  January 12, 2011, 7:30 PM

History:           
Caps Record on this Date: 4-8-0-0
Caps Game 44 Record: 17-15-3-0
All-Time vs. TAM: 60-26-6-5
All-Time at TAM: 28-15-2-2
Last Season vs. TAM 4-2-0
Last Meeting: 1/4/11, WAS 0 TAM 1 (OT)

This Year:
WAS Record: 24-12-7
Standings Points: 55
Division Rank: 2nd
Conference Rank: 5th
Last Game: 1/11/11, WAS 3 FLA 4 (OT)
Streak: Loss 1

TAM Record: 25-13-5
Standings Points: 55
Division Rank: 1st
Conference Rank: 2nd    
Last Game: 1/9/11, TAM 3 NJ 6
Streak: Loss 1

Probable Line-Ups:     
Washington
Forward Line 1: 8 OVECHKIN, 19 BACKSTROM, 22 KNUBLE
Forward Line 2: 25 CHIMERA, 85 PERRAULT, 14 FEHR
Forward Line 3: 21 LAICH, 90 JOHANSSON, 83 BEAGLE
Forward Line 4: 24 WILLSIE, 26 HENDRICKS, 39 STECKEL
Defense Pair 1: 52 GREEN, 23 HANNAN
Defense Pair 2: 27 ALZNER, 74 CARLSON
Defense Pair 3: 55 SCHULTZ, 3 POTI
Goalie: 1 VARLAMOV
Back-up Goalie: 30 NEUVIRTH

Tampa Bay
Forward Line 1: 6 MALONE, 91 STAMKOS, 26 ST. LOUIS
Forward Line 2: 12 GAGNE, 4 LECAVALIER, 10 BERGENHEIM
Forward Line 3: 21 RITOLA, 19 MOORE, 16 PURCELL
Forward Line 4: 18 HALL, 44 THOMPSON, 42 TYRELL
Defense Pair 1: 39 LUNDIN, 5 OHLUND
Defense Pair 2: 7 CLARK, 77 HEDMAN
Defense Pair 3: 8 JONES, 13 KUBINA
Goalie: 33 ELLIS
Back-up Goalie: 35 ROLOSON

Injuries:
Washington – 15 GORDON (lower body) IR, 17 KING (undisclosed) IR, 10 BRADLEY (broken finger) IR, 28 SEMIN (thigh) DTD

TAM –41 SMITH (knee) IR

Caps Milestones:
Nicklas Backstrom needs 3 points to reach 300 in his career.

Preview:

After a stinging 4-3 overtime loss last night in Florida, the Capitals travel to Tampa to take on the Lightning for supremacy in the Southeast Division. The two teams each have 55 standings points but the Lightning hold the tie break with one more win than the Caps. For the Capitals, they need to focus on their special teams as the power play has no power at all and the penalty kill that had been going so well gave up 3 to Florida last night. Look for an extremely tight game as both teams played a very defensive 1-0 overtime game at the Verizon Center last week and I don’t expect anything different from this game. I am looking for a big game from Mike Knuble this is just the type of game he excels at. Expect an aggressive hard hitting game with the Caps regaining the lead in the SE.

Joe’s prediction: Caps 2 TAM 1

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