It seems the Capitals are all amped up with nothing to do. At least for another day.
Wednesday marks the fourth straight day “off” for the Caps, though it’s the third straight day of practice. The team is set to take the ice at Rexall Place in Edmonton at 3:15 Eastern (1:15 local) time.
But is this layoff a good thing for the NHL’s last unbeaten group?
“We’ll find out. You never know till you go through it,” goaltender Tomas Vokoun said. “Some teams maybe it’s a good thing, we get some rest, have some good practices and work on stuff that didn’t work as well for us as we would’ve liked to in the games.”
At 7-0-0, the Caps’ winning streak also represents the best start in the 36-season history of the franchise. But, it has included facing five backup goaltenders and three teams on the second half of a back-to-back who arrived in Washington in the wee hours of the morning.
Plus, as many have admitted, the bounces have gone the Caps’ way.
“We’re getting lucky bounces at the right times and in a week or Thursday we might not get any of the bounces,” coach Bruce Boudreau said. “Things are going our way right now, but as we all know in sports, they can change in a heartbeat.”
There are conflicting views on whether the four-day layoff is a good thing … or not.
“Sometimes it’s a good thing, sometimes it takes a little bit away from your momentum,” Vokoun said. “We doesn’t necessarily have to worry about we have a long break or who we’re playing.”
As veteran right wing Mike Knuble pointed out, the Caps’ coaching staff knows how to keep the pace of action up during practices. On-ice workouts this week have been vigorous.
“Whatever the practice is, the coaches do something for a certain reason, and whatever it is I’m going to try to practice as hard as I can,” Brooks Laich said.
With that attitude pervading the locker room this year, the Caps are also happy to charge up for the next game – Thursday at the Oilers.
“We’d all like to keep playing games. But at the same time, I think we’re looking forward to having some time on the road,” Knuble said. “It’ll be nice to go out there and kind of spend some time together and just kind of relax and keep the thing going.”