As the Capitals and their fans anxiously await their return to Verizon Center Wednesday night against the Philadelphia Flyers (8 p.m., NBCSN), the NHL has not yet come up with makeup dates for the two games postponed due to Blizzard Jonas.
The biggest reason is coordinating availability between the Caps, the Ducks, the Pens and the Verizon Center.
Here are open dates that could work into the Caps’ schedule and why they may (mostly may not) work:
Feb. 15: Disney on Ice at Verizon Center/Ducks at Calgary/Penguins at Florida
March 14: Pistons at Wizards/Devils at Ducks/Penguins open date
March 16: Bulls at Wizards/Rangers at Ducks/Penguins open date
March 17: AC/DC at Verizon Center/Ducks open date/Hurricanes at Penguins
March 23: Hawks at Wizards/Ducks open date/Penguins open date
March 24: The Who at Verizon Center/Ducks at Maple Leafs/Devils at Penguins
April 4: Verizon open date/Ducks open date/Penguins open date.
As you can see, an afternoon game on March 23 or an evening game on April 4 makes the most sense for makeup games. But the Ducks are in Montreal on March 22 and in Toronto on March 24, resulting in three straight games. The NHLPA won’t allow that.
The Penguins could come in for an afternoon game on March 23, then return to Pittsburgh for a game the next night.
As for April 4, the Ducks are in Pittsburgh on April 3 and in Ottawa on April 5, which would give them three games in three nights, another scenario that would be contested by the NHLPA. The Pens have games on April 2, 3 and 5, which would give them four games in four nights.
And that won’t work.
That’s why the NHL might have to consider tacking on a game or two following the end of the Caps’ regular season on April 9 in St. Louis.