What's to Love and Hate About Washington Capitals' Special Teams

« Prev
1 of 5
Next »
Use your ← → (arrow) keys to browse the slideshow
What's to Love and Hate About Washington Capitals' Special Teams
Greg Fiume/Getty Images

During the 2013 NHL season, the Washington Capitals' special teams seemed to be suffering from multiple personality disorder at times.

The power play was dominant. The Caps had the best power play in the NHL with a 26.8 percent success rate. Not even the mighty Pittsburgh Penguins could match that as they were a full two percentage points behind the Caps at 24.7 percent.

The penalty kill, however, was an exercise in futility more often than not. The Caps PK ranked 27th in the NHL with a penalty kill success rate of just 77.9 percent.

To be fair, the Caps PK got better as the year went on and as the team grew more accustomed to head coach Adam Oates' system. Nevertheless, the Caps' failure to be more efficient on the penalty kill had a definite impact on their overall success last season.

In the playoffs against the New York Rangers, the Caps' power-play success rate dipped to 18.8 percent. Of course, part of the problem was that the Caps power-play chances were limited against the Rangers, particularly in Game 6, where they did not get one power-play opportunity.

But the Caps' penalty kill improved dramatically against the Rangers. The team stopped the Blueshirts on 92.9 percent of their power-play opportunities.

So what gives with the Caps' special teams? Is the power play really that good? Is the penalty kill really that bad, or was the performance in the playoffs indicative of an improving and underrated aspect of the team?

Here are a few things to love and hate about the Caps' special teams.

Begin Slideshow »

Follow Washington Capitals from B/R on Facebook

Follow Washington Capitals from B/R on Facebook and get the latest updates straight to your newsfeed!

Washington Capitals

Subscribe Now

By signing up for our newsletter, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.

Thanks for signing up.