The Capitals knew that their series against the Penguins was not going to be easy.
After losing games 1 and 2 at home, it is time for them to refocus in Pittsburgh. Caps play-by-play announcer Joe Beninati joined the Sports Junkies on Monday, ahead of Game 3, to offer some words of advice to the team.
"What you have to do now is park what happened in the first two games. Use whatever fancy terminology you want, compartmentalize it. All you focus on is one singular game. So game three is in Pittsburgh, very difficult place to win, but I believe in this teams ability level to produce a big game and to produce better than they did in the first two."
Beninati went on to say:
"I think so much of this fellas, is in their minds, I think it's in their heads. And they try so desperately to beat this particular team. This is their archrival, their nemesis. They try so hard that they don't allow themselves to play to their best abilities. In the first period the other night in Game 2, I thought they could be world leaders. You coulda' put any hockey team on the ice in front of them and for whatever reason whether it be Marc-Andre Fleury, and I'm sure we'll get into that and more, they didn't come away with a lead. And this Pittsburgh bunch, a championship caliber squad, is so opportunistic that when you over-extend....they burn you."
So how do the Caps get over this mind game? Beninati used a simple quote,
"Don't try harder, try easier. These are all words. You can sit there [and say], 'Joe it's a bunch of mumbo jumbo,' but it's all in the minds. Relax and let your ability level come to the top."