Winnipeg Jets vs. Washington Capitals Pick & Prediction MARCH 11th 2024

The Washington Capitals begin a five-game Western road trip Monday against the Winnipeg Jets as they strive to keep their playoff hopes alive.

Washington, 7-2-1 in its past 10 games, is within striking distance of both third place in the Metropolitan Division and the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. Their chances could hinge on their performance in five games over eight days at Winnipeg, Edmonton, Seattle, Vancouver and Calgary.

“We know we are facing the really good teams, but we know the way we have to play against these teams,” said Aliaksei Protas, who had two assists in a 4-1 win against the visiting Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday. “We just have to play our game — a game we’re used to playing when we are successful — and I think we can have success on the road.”

That game has been predicated on an aggressive offensive approach. Ranked near the bottom in scoring most of the season, Washington has scored 43 goals in its past 10 games, including 10 in its past two.

Against the Blackhawks, Sonny Milano scored in his fifth consecutive game. Hendrix Lapierre and Tom Wilson each scored in their second straight game for the Capitals, who have won three of four. John Carlson added two assists and Charlie Lindgren made 31 saves.

“It’s coming from everywhere,” Carlson said after recording the 93rd multi-assist game of his career. “I think a lot of different guys are scoring, a lot of lines are contributing every night, and that’s the type of team that we have right now, and that’s what we need.”

Injured Washington forwards Nic Dowd and T.J. Oshie and defenseman Martin Fehervary are each expected to return to the lineup during the road trip.

Winnipeg has lost two of three following a 5-0 drubbing at the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday. Connor Hellebuyck made 32 saves for the Jets, who were coming off a 3-0 win at the Seattle Kraken on Friday.

“Whatever my message was before the game was clearly wrong,” Winnipeg coach Rick Bowness said. “It starts with that, I guess. The bottom line is that’s the worst game we have played in my two years here. By far. Because we didn’t have one player play a good game. Not one. It starts there. And it ends there. It’s as simple as that.”

Vancouver converted a turnover into a goal just 2:05 in and the Jets trailed 3-0 after the first period.

“I don’t think we got to our game,” Jets defenseman Nate Schmidt said. “They had the majority of the scoring chances, the majority of the chances to start the game and that put us on our heels, and we never really recovered.”

Winnipeg is 3-3 since a four-game winning streak Feb. 20-27.

Some help is on the way. Forward Tyler Toffoli and defenseman Colin Miller — acquired in trades with the New Jersey Devils on Friday — are both expected to make their Jets debut against the Capitals.

The teams are meeting for the first time this season with Winnipeg slated to visit Washington on March 24.

–Field Level Media

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