Caps lose their grip

Caps lose their grip
November 16, 2011, 5:28 am
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Questions worth asking after the Capitals' crushing 3-1 loss in Nashville Tuesday night:

Why were Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Troy Brouwer on the ice after Brouwer had just given the Caps a 1-0 lead with 4:46 remaining in regulation?
The first shift after scoring a goal is always one of the most critical in hockey, especially in a close game and the top trio is not known for its work in the defensive zone. It didn't help matters when all three forwards seemed to stop skating, thinking the Predators were going to be called for offsides. They weren't and Martin Erat scored the equalizer on an uncontested tap-in, prompting Joe B's call of the night, "You Dirt Erat!"

Where's the pine tar?

On the Predators' game-tying and game-winning goals, a Capital was left defending without a stick. Brouwer lost his on Erat's game-tying goal, and defenseman John Erskine lost his in a board battle with Colin Wilson, who bolted to the net and scored the game-winner.

Who is your starter in Winnipeg Thursday night?

Tomas Vokoun might have had his best game of the season in Nashville, with his best save of the night coming on a Mike Fisher breakaway with 2:30 remaining in the second period to keep the game scoreless. Vokoun seemed to earn himself a start in Winnipeg, where the Caps will try to avoid their first three-game losing streak.