Washington begins what could ultimately be a make-or-break road trip Tuesday night, taking on the Pittsburgh Penguins at Consol Energy Center at 7:30. It's the beginning of a three-city, four-game trek that will include a two-game stop in Winnipeg later this week, and a date with the Rangers Sunday in New York. The Capitals begin this Tuesday morning seven points behind both Carolina and Winnipeg for first place in the Southeast Division race. Washington is also seven points back of the eighth and final playoff spot with 20 games to play.
The task in Pittsburgh won't be easy. The Penguins enter play Tuesday having won nine straight games, and are now 22-8-0 on the season. It's the final meeting of the year between the Caps and Pens tonight, and the 200th lifetime meeting between the rivals.
Here is today's Capitals Minute, with Joel Ward looking back on offense from Jason Chimera and Mathieu Perreault Sunday. Ward says the Caps hope to use that as a springboard to a winning road trip. Airtime tonight on the Caps Radio Network is 7:15.