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Game Preview: Jets vs Capitals

The Jets face the Capitals back-to-back at home starting on Thursday night.

Thursday, 21.03.2013 / 7:51 PM / Preview
NHL.com

CAPITALS (12-16-1) at JETS (16-12-2)

TV: CSN-DC, TSN-JETS

Last 10: Washington 5-5-0; Winnipeg 6-3-1

Season series: The teams have split two meetings to this point, which both club winning in the other's arena. Washington won at MTS Centre 3-0 on March 2.

Big story: These teams play twice in as many nights in Winnipeg -- the Capitals probably need a sweep to foster any fleeting hope about making the playoffs while the Jets can cement their hold on the Southeast Division lead.

Team scope

Capitals: For about four weeks, the Washington Capitals looked like the team many pundits expected them to be. After an abject start, the Capitals went 8-3-0 from Feb. 9 to Mar. 7 and appeared on the verge of being back in the playoff race.

Then came a lost weekend in New York, a three-game losing streak and four games of running in place. The result has left the Capitals in 14th place in the Eastern Conference and nine points back of the Jets in the Southeast. Even a well-played defeat like the one Tuesday in Pittsburgh does nothing for Washington at this point. It is "start a long winning streak time" or else for the Capitals.

Jets: When Winnipeg lost to Washington at MTS earlier this month, it was the sixth defeat in 10 games in a building where the Jets were fantastic last season. After a third-period rally Tuesday against Boston, the Jets have now won three straight at home and have stormed to the top of the division.

Winnipeg still has 11 of its final 18 games at home, and the Jets just went 4-1-1 in a relatively difficult segment of the schedule. They also have 11 of their final 18 against teams currently outside the top eight in the East.

Who's hot: Alex Ovechkin has three goals and an assist in the past four games for Washington after going the three previous contests without a point. Blake Wheeler has three multi-goal games in his past five for Winnipeg.

Injury report: Defensemen John Erskine (upper body), Tomas Kundratek (right leg), Tom Poti (back) are likely out for Washington. Mike Green (groin) told reporters Wednesday he expects to play, but coach Adam Oates would not confirm that. Winnipeg will be without defensemen Tobias Enstrom (shoulder) and Zach Redmond (leg), forwards Jim Slater (upper body) and Anthony Peluso (hand) and backup goaltender Al Montoya (lower body).

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
B. Wheeler 82 28 41 4 69
B. Little 82 23 41 8 64
D. Byfuglien 78 20 36 -20 56
A. Ladd 78 23 31 8 54
O. Jokinen 82 18 25 -8 43
M. Frolik 81 15 27 8 42
E. Kane 63 19 22 -7 41
M. Scheifele 63 13 21 9 34
T. Enstrom 82 10 20 -9 30
J. Trouba 65 10 19 4 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Montoya 13 8 3 .920 2.30
O. Pavelec 22 26 7 .901 3.01