The Metro is a pit of vipers, but the Caps are holding the line

Chris Lingebach
March 18, 2019 - 4:54 pm
The Metro is a pit of vipers, but the Caps are holding the line

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Capitals remain deadlocked with Barry Trotz's New York Islanders atop the Metropolitan division with just 10 regular-season games to go.

It's only fitting, both in the way things are going and the way things have gone – with Trotz leaving for Long Island after winning the Stanley Cup with the Caps – that they'll square off in Game 82.

But that doesn't tell the whole story of the Metro, with five clubs jockeying for positioning and as many as eight clubs still with a chance to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"It doesn't seem like anybody wants to cool off in this division right now," 106.7 The Fan's Grant Paulsen noted to Caps winger Brett Connolly during his weekly appearance, presented by F.H. Furr.

"Yeah. Everyone's winning," Connolly said. "Pittsburgh is obviously a good team. We found that out when we went into Pittsburgh. It was a close game – a couple mistakes – but yeah, it's tight. Everyone's winning. Everybody wants to be in the playoffs this year."

Currently as it stands, both Wild Cards – Carolina and Columbus – will come out of the Metro in the Eastern Conference. Those clubs trail the Caps (91 points), by just six and seven points, respectively. Montreal, with 81 points, is third in the Wild Card standings.

The top of the Metro is getting hot at the right time, with the Isles, Caps and Penguins all winning six of their last 10 games. The Caps have the edge there, going 8-2-0 in that stretch.

"It seems like our division, everyone is starting to play good at the right time of the year," said Connolly. "Everyone feels they've got a chance. You get in and you never know what can happen.

"Everyone's playing really well. I think the other teams are pushing us, and we're pushing other teams as well. It's gonna make for a great playoffs, a great first round. Hopefully we can keep winning, and keep playing hard and everything will take care of itself."

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