Progress in Progress
It’s everywhere you look.
The Caps are 3-0 for the first time since 2002-03. That season marked the Capitals’ most recent playoff appearance.
On Friday, they get a chance to match the franchise record for consecutive wins at the start of a season when they visit the Rangers at Madison Square Garden. The Caps opened the 1991-92 and the 1997-98 seasons with four straight wins. The 1997-98 season marks the Caps’ most recent playoff series win and their lone trip ever to the Stanley Cup finals.
The Caps did not play as well today as they did in their first two games. But they found a way to win.
Washington was 7-32-6 when its opponent scored the game’s first goal in 2006-07. The Caps were 13-28-4 in such situations in 2005-06. They’re 1-0 in 2007-08.
The Capitals were 9-10-14 in one-goal games last season.
In 2005-06, the Caps collected their second road win in their 10th road game, on Nov. 19. In 2006-07, the Caps notched their second road win in their seventh road game, on Oct. 30. This season, the Caps recorded their second road win in their second road game. On Oct. 8.
The last time the Caps started the season with wins in their first two road games was 2002-03.
I researched all the way back to 1994-95 and could not find a game where Washington managed to win with as few as a dozen shots on goal. But … getting back to the Island and to that 2002-03 season again, the Caps won their road opener at Nassau (to run their season’s record to 2-0) on Oct. 12, 2002 by a 2-1 count despite being outshot 36-14. The Caps also took a 2-1 decision from Tampa Bay on Feb. 3, 2004 despite being outshot 39-14. The Caps won 2-1 on Monday in Long Island despite being outshot 31-12.
Right on cue, this just in: Today’s game marked the fewest shots on goal ever in a Washington win, eclipsing the 13 shots the Caps fired in a 5-2 win at St. Louis on Jan. 29, 1977.
Washington has its first three-game winning streak since it won three in a row from Jan. 4-9, 2007. The Caps had one four-game winning streak in each of the last two seasons. They had one four-game winning streak in 2001-02 and in 2002-03. The last time Washington won more than four in a row was a five-game run Mar. 3-11, 2002.
It’s only three games of course, and there is a long way to go. But after such a long summer, those three games (in a very condensed span of 66.5 hours) could not have gone much better.