HUGE game tonight. It's been a very competitive series thus far. Caps are down 2 games to 1 and look to even the series tonight at home. Unfortunately we will have to try and do that without the services of Nicklas Backstrom who was suspended for tonight's game. Keys to the game include:
1. Better play from Holtby. He was good in the first two games but he let in a couple of soft goals in Game 3 - particularly the Bruins first goal which was a pretty benign wrist shot towards his head. Will be interesting to see how he bounces back.
2. Better defense. What was very solid in the first two games really hurt us in the last game. Too many turnovers and just not clearing out the crease and helping out Holtby. Needs to stiffen up tonight.
3. Taking advantage of home ice. Will be hard to lose this one and go down 3 games to 1 and head back to Boston. Caps have been good at home and we need to take advantage of the crowd noise and the line matchups.
4. Need others to step up. The Bruins will not let Ovi beat them. Others are going to have to pick up the slack and get the goals. Guys have been playing well but we need continued efforts from the likes of Semin, MoJo, Beagle, and would love to see a goal from either Green or Wideman.
5. Starting out strong. Keeping with the home ice advantage and the crowd noise, we really need to feed off of that and start out strong and put the pressure on. The Caps during the regular season have typically disappeared for entire periods and have had their issues starting out aggressive. Can't happen tonight. Need a strong effort right from the opening drop.
In the end, I like the way we are playing and hopefully we can put together another good effort. Hopefully Holtby can come up big for us and hopefully we can walk away tonight having evened the series. Looking forward to it.
UNLEASH THE FURY!!!