As you see the Capitals slowly sliding down the Eastern Conference standings, remember these words by veteran goaltender Tomas Vokoun:
We have to look at the standings and realize we cant fall farther and farther back because its impossible to catch teams.
On Sunday night, the Winnipeg Jets won their third straight game to move into the ninth spot in the conference standings, one point ahead of the 10th-place Capitals. (In case you're wondering, the Caps have not won three games in a row since Jan. 11-15.)
The good news for Caps fans is that they have three games in hand on the Jets and can move back into a tie with the Southeast Division-leading Panthers with a win tonight in Carolina. The Hurricanes are in last place in the East despite going 5-2-3 in their last 10 games.
While there are no must-win games in February, the Capitals need to recognize the importance of tonights game and play as if it is.