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Time to worry in Washington? Caps drop their fifth straight game, Avs win 3-2

Paul Stastny, Kevin Shattenkirk

Colorado Avalanche center Paul Stastny (26) and Colorado Avalanche defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (8) celebrate their goal as the Washington Capitals defenseman Scott Hannan (23) reacts during the second period of an NHL hockey game at the Verizon Center, Saturday, Dec. 11, 2010, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)


Another game and another tough loss for the Washington Capitals. The Caps losing streak now sits at five games after dropping a tough game against the visiting Colorado Avalanche 3-2. It’s not without trying tonight that the Caps lost. They kept Avalanche goalie Craig Anderson more than busy with 42 shots on goal but Anderson was equal to the task stopping 40 shots.

Colorado set the tone early in the first getting goals from Kevin Shattenkirk and Ryan Wilson. Mike Knuble’s goal in the first period sandwiched between Colorado goals kept the game close at 2-1, but Paul Stastny’s second period goal provided the game-deciding tally. Former Avalanche forward Matt Hendricks scored in the third to cut the lead to 3-2 but they’d get no closer. Michal Neuvirth stopped 23 in the loss.

For Washington, the frustration is building and the finger should be pointed towards the Capitals offense. In their five-game streak, they’ve scored just eight goals. Meanwhile, the goaltending has been average giving up 15 goals, good for three per game. With the Caps scoring the third most goals in the NHL, giving up three a game shouldn’t be too much to overcome but it’s still not great. For a team that’s going to contend for the Stanley Cup they need to do better.

It’s a long season, of course, but this kind of run does a lot to wear on one’s confidence and after a year that ended earlier than expected last season, fans are getting anxious.