The Washington Times - March 15, 2011, 11:13PM

Good defense, timely offense and goaltending that’s solid when it needs to be – that’s a recipe for winning hockey on the road. That’s about what the Capitals got Tuesday night in Montreal as they extending this winning streak to nine with a 4-2 victory over the Canadiens at Bell Centre.

Sure, Braden Holtby had a gaffe leaving his crease (more on that in an upcoming post), but so did Carey Price. It was about Holtby making a couple good saves (eight in the third) but mostly ones that the Caps expect him to make.


Then there was the Caps’ offense, which seemed to thrive thanks to (shocker) some sharp passing. Alex Ovechkin’s gorgeous feed to Marcus Johansson set up the rookie’s second of the night, and while the Swede had to finish, Ovechkin made it pretty easy on him.

For about 20 minutes the Caps were on top of the world – well, the Eastern Conference – until the Flyers wrapped up a victory at Florida. But Bruce Boudreau said Sunday “I don’t even wanna think about” being the No. 1 seed.

Being a winning hockey team on a roll like this – he’ll take that.  

“When you’re winning, you think you’re gonna keep winning,” Boudreau told reporters in Montreal Tuesday night. “When you’re losing you think you’re gonna keep losing.”

He said he believes in the confidence that winning and losing momentum can create, and right now the Caps have that in spades.

But it’s not automatic. It took a solid road effort to keep this run going. The Caps won the faceoff battle, blocked 10 shots and won the special teams battle – two power-play goals to none for the Habs.

Holtby finished with 24 saves on 26 shots, though one he did give up was one he’d like to have back as his leaving the crease opened the net for Travis Moen. The rookie responded well in a hostile environment.

Mix it all together and it was the kind of road hockey that Boudreau or any coach would want. And no matter who’s in net Wednesday night against even-more-dangerous Detroit, the Caps have a chance to hit double digits if they play the same kind of game.