Last night in Atlanta the Washington Capitals played two not so commendable periods. They were down 3-1 at the beginning of the third period. They were simply just not skating.
They would have to build some momentum if they had any hopes of walking away from the game with points under their belts.
Well, Alexander Ovechkin gave them exactly the momentum they were hoping for. He scored his sixtieth goal of the season. He is the first player in twelve years to score sixty goals in a single season.
The Caps started the third period like a whole different team. They outshot the Atlanta Thrashers 23-2 in the third period. After Ovechkin's goal, Nicklas Backstrom scored two goals in 32 seconds. It was great to see Backstrom step up and score those crucial two goals.
Boyd Gordon cushioned the win with an empty-netter making the final score 5-3.
The Washington Capitals put on a dazzling performance in the third period. But let's face the facts, they can not continue to play that way. They can not continue to only play one period of hockey.
The Capitals have six games left in the regular season. They play the Carolina Hurricanes twice. They can not expect to win against Carolina playing the way they did in Atlanta. If they do make it to the playoffs they have to play every game the way they played in their third period last night. And they have to play a full 60 minutes of hockey.
The Cap's number one priority at this point is to keep winning. The Capitals are 7-3 in their last ten games. Comparing the last ten games of the Capitals to the other teams fighting for that last playoff spot shows that if they can remain on a streak and keep their momentum for the remaining six games the Washington Capitals could be heading for the playoffs.