Sam Kasan gives his three impressions from the press box of the Penguins' 3-2 loss to the Washington Capitals.
The Pens are a much different team than the last time these two clubs met (Dec. 14). Since then, the Pens have added players like Carl Hagelin, Trevor Daley and Bryan Rust. Pittsburgh’s roster has slowly added more and more speedsters. And it shows. One of the Caps’ biggest strengths is their speed. But Pittsburgh matched that quickness in an up-and-down contest. The Pens proved one thing tonight. They can skate (literally) with the Caps.
While the Pens matched the Caps speed-for-speed, the Caps definitely had the edge in the physical department. Washington outhit the Pens, 30-17. The Pens were playing on back-to-back nights and the Caps used it to their advantage. The Caps punished the Pens with every opportunity, and it slowly wore down the Pens. Pittsburgh just didn’t have enough left in the tank in the third period.
It may have only been a regular-season game between these two teams, but just imagine another playoff series with these clubs. The game was intense, exciting, emotional and well played by both squads. There isn’t a lot that separates these two teams. They traded chance for chance in a back-and-forth battle. It would be a close and thrilling postseason matchup.