Hurricanes vs. Capitals: Washington Looking to Bounce Back at Home

Josh SachnoffContributor IIIMarch 12, 2013

Capital left winger Alex Ovechkin
Capital left winger Alex OvechkinJustin K. Aller/Getty Images

After rough outings against both the New York Islanders and New York Rangers this past weekend, can the Washington Capitals bounce back with a win at home Tuesday night against the Hurricanes? 

Tuesday, March 12: Carolina Hurricanes (14-9-1) vs. Washington Capitals (10-13-1), 7:00 PM ET.

The Washington Capitals had a rough start to their 2013 campaign by going 2-8-1. They have since played better, but are again on a losing streak. A win against the third best team in the Eastern Conference on Tuesday night would be ideal.  

It will be up to the Capital’s offense to score more goals, as well as stay out of the penalty box. 

Washington scored just three goals in their last two games, and will need to rely on two-time MVP left-winger Alex Ovechkin and center Mike Ribeiro to get back on track. Ovechkin has nine goals and 11 assists on the season. He had one goal and two assists against Florida on March 7, but failed to record a single point in the Capital’s last two games. 

Like Ovechkin, Ribeiro has been a threat offensively scoring nine goals and recording an impressive 19 assists this season. He also had a goal and two assists against Florida on March 7, but failed to do anything in the series with the New York teams this past weekend. 

These two players have to play more of a role tonight if they are going to knock off a team like the Carolina Hurricanes. Not being able to contribute offensively and failing to put more than two goals up on the scoreboard is not going to get the job done. 

Big performances are in store for Ovechkin and Ribeiro on Tuesday night. 

One other aspect to look at is the Capitals' problem with committing penalties. It basically hurt them in their last two losses as they were three of eight on the penalty kill.  

The Capitals have not been strong on the penalty kill this season. They currently rank 29th in the league on the penalty kill. 

This a going to be a crucial game for the Capitals because if they lose their third game in a row, it will hurt their confidence heading forward and continue to put their chances of making the playoffs even further out of reach. The Capitals need to make sure they play well offensively if they are going to knock off the Hurricanes on Tuesday night.