This time last season, the Caps were thriving in Coach Bruce Boudreau's offensive system, often racking up five or more goals a game and collecting points at a pace well ahead of the rest of the Southeast Division.
That team this year is the Vancouver Canucks, who visit Verizon Center on Friday night. Led by Henrik and Daniel Sedin, the Canucks are atop the NHL standings with 62 points and are second in total goals with 143.
"They're a very mirror image of what we were doing at this point last year," Boudreau said at practice Thursday.
But do the Caps want to be where they were last season, which ended with a first-round playoff loss to eighth-seeded Montreal?
"We did it last year. We ran away with it . . . and it got us nowhere," forward Brooks Laich said. "They're scoring, great. Whatever. Have fun with it, but for us it's just a big game."