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Posted at 11:26 AM ET, 02/23/2012

Capitals in a dangerous place but could learn from New York Giants

The Capitals are in a funk right now and it couldn't have come at a worse time, as the season is quickly drawing to an end. This is the time of the year when the team should be surging, not sagging, but the Caps seem to be losing their grasp on this season.

Their struggles had me reflecting on parts of my career while playing for the Redskins, my rookie year in particular. We were a very talented team but we underachieved so much so that our head coach was fired, but we still had a chance to make the playoffs. All I could remember is that the belief of some was not the same for all in that locker room. Some believed that we could pull together and win out to make the postseason, while it appeared that others would be more content watching them from home.

One reality that exists in team sports is the team must believe in the same purpose. All must dedicate themselves to doing what's required singularly for the better good of the entire team to achieve the best results. 

Belief is a powerful tool if used correctly, but like most things, and that 2000 team I was on, it can also lead to downfalls.

When positive belief is so strong with coaches and players the results can be mind boggling. A great example is this year’s Super Bowl champs. After struggling for much of the season and battling injuries, they were still able to find a way, much like where the Capitals are right now. They are battling injuries and struggling but like the New York Giants, if they believe enough in one another and their ability to rebound and regroup, there's no doubt in my mind that they can save their season.

Granted, there's always the other side of the story, which is the belief that the season is lost. I don't believe that this group of guys are thinking that way.

Coach Dale Hunter is tasked with pulling these guys together and making one last charge for the postseason. His communication has to be laser sharp and to the point. I believe if he can convince the team that very few outsiders believe they have a chance and all they have are each other, creating an us-against-the-world mentality, they just might respond.

It happened for the Giants and I think with some good fortune, with the return of some of the injured guys and some inspired goaltending, this team can change the tide of its season and make the playoffs.

Please leave your comments here and chat with me on Twitter @LaVarArrington.

By  |  11:26 AM ET, 02/23/2012

 
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