Game Preview: Capitals at Coyotes


It may be Valentine’s Day, but there won’t be a lot of love shown between the Capitals and Coyotes tonight at Arena. Phoenix will be looking for their fifth straight win and their third straight at home after losing five straight at Arena. Washington will looking to snap a two-game losing skid.

Washington’s offense has really struggled the past two games. They have only scored once against the Sharks and the Kings at home. The lone goal came against the Kings in the first period the other night. They have scored only 11 goals the entire month of Feburary. Things won’t get any easier for the Caps as they will face off against Coyotes goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov, who has allowed only four goals in his past four starts.

It is a bit puzzling how a team that is as talented at the Caps to be struggling offensively. Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom form one of the best 1-2 combos in the league and the team from the nation’s capital has 12 other players that have double-digit point totals.

Alexander Semin being out could have something to do with Washington’s offensive struggles. He has been back for only two games now since missing most of January and early Feburary with battling injuries and he has been held scoreless during those two games. He will need to get a few more games under his belt under he feels comfortable on the ice.

One problem that Washington hadsn’t had has been their goaltending. Michal Neuvirth and Seymon Varlamov have combined for the seventh best GAA in the league while essentially splitting starts. Varlamov has been receiving more of the starts lately even though he has been struggling a bit. The Caps have lost six of his last seven starts.