Seen and heard last night at HSBC Arena in Buffalo, N.Y.:
JUST LIKE HOME — The Caps always have enjoyed playing here. After winning just seven games (with 28 losses and five ties) in 22 years at nearby Memorial Auditorium, Washington is 11-6-1 at HSBC. That includes a 3-0 mark during the 1998 Eastern Conference finals which culminated with Joe Juneau’s overtime series-winner in Game 6 on June 4 that put the Caps into their only Stanley Cup finals.
KNOCKING ON THE DOOR — With eight assists in his past seven games, Washington’s Sergei Gonchar has moved to within one of becoming the fifth defenseman in Caps history with 250 in a career. The others are Calle Johansson (361), Scott Stevens (331), Kevin Hatcher (277) and Larry Murphy (259).
Center Robert Lang (600 career games) and left wing Kip Miller (400) will reach milestones when they hit the ice tomorrow against Montreal at MCI Center.
LIKE NEW — The boards behind one of the goals at the arena that were damaged by a monster truck during a weekend show were fixed in time for the game.
HELP THE NEEDY — The Caps are collecting canned and other non-perishable food items to benefit the Capital Area Food Bank at tomorrow’s game against Montreal.
Fans can drop off food from 6 p.m. through the beginning of the second period at any MCI entrance or guest services location. Through its more than 750 member feeding programs, the Capital Area Food Bank distributes millions of pounds of food each year.
— David Elfin