One noticeable trend in the first two games of the Capitals’ 2011-12 season is that it’s been the bottom six forwards who have carried the bulk of the offensive load contributing four of the team’s nine goals.
Particularly absent from Washington’s scoresheets, in, granted, a small sample size, is the presence of Alex Ovechkin.
He tallied an assist against Carolina in the opener after arriving late the day before from Moscow, having attended his uncle’s funeral. But against Tampa Bay he was a minus-2 in 21 minutes 47 seconds of ice time with only three shots on goal – four attempts missed, including several on the power play, and three more were blocked.
Coach Bruce Boudreau didn’t make any excuses for Ovechkin, who was the only player that did not take part in the morning skate Monday, when asked to assess the star left wing.
“I think he’s got a long way to go to get to where he wants to be — to be as good as he should be,” Boudreau said. “He’s our number one player, but he can be better. There’s no doubt about it.”