The NHL’s second season gets underway on Wednesday as we get a glimpse of five of the eight first round matchups, including two from the Eastern Conference.
Earlier today I took you through each pairing in the West, from the Canucks to the Predators. Now, it’s the East’s turn!
Washington (48-23-11) vs. NY Rangers (44-33-5)
It was a tough season for the Washington Capitals, as their big three of Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Alex Semin each saw dramatic drops in their offensive output and the team finished…wait, hold on a second. Those three each saw their point totals drop off big time and the Caps still finished first in the East and second overall? Oh boy, the Rangers have their work cut out for them! The Capitals committed to team defense this year and it paid off for them in a big way, but will it mean playoff success? New York might have something to say about that! It’ll be up to Henrik Lundqvist to hold off what is still a high-powered Capitals offence through the course of this series and give his team a chance to hopefully chip away at the inexperience of Washington goalies Semyon Varlamov and Michal Neuvirth. That inexperience between the pipes could be the Achilles heel of the Capitals. (more…)