This Washington Capitals team has become awfully predictable, hasn’t it?

With the recent history of swoons and slips against teams well behind them in points totals, a fierce battle and dramatic victory or the road yesterday against the top team in the East, and their 3-4-1 record in the second of back-to-backs when they win that first, one could reasonably predict a loss today.

But who thought it would be such four-goal deficit ugliness?  The last time the Caps lost by four at home was . . . the last game featuring Glen Hanlon pacing behind the Washington bench.

This morning, the team faced an opportunity to extend a division lead to a comical 17 points.  And that lead is still fairly insurmountable.

However, though the calendar has turned to March and warmer climes teased us a bit in these parts, winter weather returned impressively to the Northeast Corridor this morning.  Watching large snowflakes carried by a stiff breeze as I sipped my first mug of coffee, I took it as a sign that the regular season is, well, not quite over. 

capture

And there’s now a lengthy storm of eleven more games out of the last 18 against Southeast foes.  Against whom the team seems lately to have little interest in playing against.  In fact, the only teams that they will face in the remaining slate which currently hold a playoff berth are the two from Pennsylvania.

At least we know that they’ll be ready for those games. 

As it was more than a month ago, the remainder of the season will in all likelihood decide only whether Les Capitals will finish second or third in the conference.  And that really begins and ends the significance of all of these Southeast games.

At least in the standings.

The weightiest concern now is how not getting fired up to play all of these games against opponents far in their rear view mirror is going to affect momentum entering the playoffs.

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