Washington at NY Islanders
When: 7:00 PM ET, Saturday, November 30, 2013
Where: Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, New York
The New York Islanders are in a major spiral, having dropped five straight games and 10 of 12 entering Saturday's matchup against the visiting Washington Capitals. The Islanders turned in one of their worst efforts of the season in a 5-0 home loss to the Detroit Red Wings on Friday. "You keep your head up and you keep playing hard, but this isn't good enough in any way," Islanders captain John Tavares said. "As a team, all we can think about is playing a better game next time out."
Washington halted a four-game winless drought of its own by rallying for a 3-2 shootout victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Friday. The normally high-powered Capitals have struggled on the offensive end, and one of the culprits is a power play that still ranks among the league's best despite being mired in a 4-for-31 rut. "We talk all the time about the way to win games in this league right now," Capitals coach Adam Oates said. "You've got to be willing to grind it out."TV:
7 p.m. ET, CSN (Washington), MSG Plus (New York)ABOUT THE CAPITALS (13-11-2):
Braden Holtby was back in net two days after giving up a season high-tying five goals - though it was more out of necessity than choice. An injury to Michal Neuvirth in Friday's pregame warmups opened the door for Holtby, who responded with 35 saves in the shootout win and could be in for a heavy workload over the next few games. "Anytime you're on a losing streak, you want to get back in there and be a part of the guys that make the difference in ending the streak," Holtby said after Friday's win.ABOUT THE ISLANDERS (8-15-3):
Kevin Poulin was on the verge of supplanting a slumping Evgeni Nabokov in net when the latter was injured, but he appears to be buckling under the weight of the No. 1 role. Poulin has surrendered at least three goals in seven straight appearances and has lost nine of 12 games, including each one during the losing streak. New York is the only team in the Eastern Conference to allow 90 goals and owns the league's worst penalty-killing unit with a success rate of 71.1 percent.OVERTIME
1. Holtby is 3-1-0 with a 1.73 goals-against average in four appearances versus New York.
2. The Islanders have been outscored 22-9 during the five-game skid.
3. Capitals superstar Alex Ovechkin had two goals and an assist in a 6-2 home win over the Islanders on Nov. 5.PREDICTION:
Capitals 4, Islanders 2
Stats and Records