Eight minutes had elapsed before the Capitals registered their first shot on goal against the Penguins on Wednesday.
Joel Ward recorded a career-high 49 points last season, but he's without a goal in his past 13 games. Brooks Laich, a three-time 20-goal scorer, hasn't scored in 15 games.
After loses to Montreal and St. Louis over the weekend, the Capitals have dropped to 1-4-2 over their past seven games.
This season, the Capitals’ captain seems more committed to the unglamorous aspects of hockey, namely those involving play without the puck.
Sustained success can conceal deficiencies, some of which were exposed in losses at Nashville and Dallas — Washington’s first consecutive defeats in six weeks.
The quiet defenseman is backing up his big contract with workmanlike play for the Capitals.
But the center hasn’t capitalized on his recent scoring opportunities.
Washington leads the league with six players with at least 10 goals.
On Thursday, the Capitals and the Blackhawks will march down a runway in center field at Nationals Park and onto a rink situated in the infield surrounded by a sellout crowd.
The 29-year-old Capitals defenseman has become more involved in the offense this year under coach Barry Trotz.