Had the Washington Capitals not beaten Edmonton on Feb. 1, they would have been zero for February.
The Capitals completed their month in the valley of fatigue by dropping a 7-4 decision in St. Louis Saturday night. Rookie Jorgen Pettersson scored a hat trick and Wayne Babych had two goals, to establish a St. Louis record 44. The loss extended the Capitals' winless streak to 11. s
"We've got to get this slump out of our system," said Capital Coach Gary Green. "We're going to have to erase the entire month of February from our minds. It was a horrible month. Thank God it's over."
Nevertheless, the Caps are still in the playoff picture. They own a two-point lead over Edmonton for the 16th and final playoff spot. Edmonton lost to Colorado, 3-1, Saturday night.
The Capitals play the Calgary Flames at Capital Centre at 7:35 Tuesday night, and then travel to Quebec Wednesday night to try to atone for an 11-7 shellacking suffered at the hands of the Nordiques last Sunday at Capital Centre.
One of the problems has been nagging injuries to goalkeepers Mike Palmateer, Dave Parro and Wayne Stephenson. In addition, defensemen Pat Ribble and Howard Walker have been out with spleen injuries, defenseman Yvon Labre has been sidelined with a knee injury, and forward Rolf Edberg is still out of action with a broken jaw. Center Guy Charron also has a shoulder separation.
Against St. Louis, Green replaced Palmateer with Parro in the third period, after the Blues had scored their final goal. Green said Palmateer was injured ("he had a twinge in his knee"), but the goalie said he faked the injury because the coach was going to pull him anyway.