WASHINGTON -- Washington Capitals Adam Oates admitted prior to Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals on Friday night that he's "worried" about how his team will be at the start of the game. He pointed to the starts each team had as being a difference between the Capitals winning Games 1 and 2 at Verizon Center and losing to the New York Rangers in Games 3 and 4 at Madison Square Garden.
"We have to come out and have a good start and not let them feel that they're into the game and do our best to neutralize then, and then we'll be fine," Oates said.
Oates later clarified his remarks, saying he wasn't necessarily concerned about the Capitals being bad at the start of the game, but rather that he doesn't want them to play tight. He said he watched Game 5 between the Pittsburgh Penguins and New York Islanders on Thursday and thought the Penguins were tight to start the game.
"They got through it and they got into their game," Oates said. "I'm a little bit worried about that. You've got your home crowd, which should give you life, but you've got to make good decisions with the puck. Let's get it in, get our legs and get into the rhythm of the game."
Here are the lineups each team will use at the start of Game 5: