The Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins are set to square off in the NHL playoffs for the first time since 2009, and of course, all of the attention is on the two best players in the NHL: Alex Ovechkin and Sydney Crosby.

In the 09 Eastern Conference Semi-Finals the Penguins edged the Capitals in a seven game series, where the two young stars both scored eight goals a piece.

Now imagine, seven years later and both players fully developed. It is an absolute travesty we have had to wait 7 full years for this matchup again in the postseason. But this years series is more than just Ovi vs Sid.

Lets get into it.

 

Washington Capitals 

 

Keys To Victory

Continue Special Teams Dominance

Caps finished the season at an impressive 5th in the NHL in PP conversion as well as 2nd in PK.

 

Braden Holtby

If recently named Vezina Trophy finalist Braden Holtby can continue his stellar play look for the Caps to be in the drivers seat.

 

X-Factor

Evgeny Kuznetsov

In the series against the Flyers, Kusnetzov did not produce. If “the 23 year old Russian can get his game back, watch out.

 

 

Pittsburgh Penguins

Keys To Victory

Contain Ovechkin

Everyone knows that the Capitals PP goes through #8. If the penguins can get some blocked shots and disrupt the Washington PP things could get interesting.

 

Net Presence

If the Penguins can get a big bodied guy like Hornqvist or Fehr in front of net look for them to disrupt Braden Holtby’s vision as almost all of the goals Holtby allowed in the series against the Flyers came off screened shots and deflections.

 

X-Factor

Conor Sheary

A player like Conor Sheary is always dangerous due to his high energy and ability to fly around the ice but especially when paired on a line with a guy like Sydney Crosby.

 

My Pick: Caps in 6

Buckle up, folks.

share on:

Reply