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Blues At Capitals Morning Open Thread: Eastern Conference Ain't No Thang

The Blues have had only one hiccup so far this season against the Eastern Conference. Will the Capitals become speed bump number two, or roadkill number nine?

Greg Fiume

With their win last night over the Carolina Hurricanes, the Blues've improved to 6-1-0 against the Eastern Conference this year. Since 2010-11, the Blues are 30-8-5 against the teams in the Eastern Time Zone. Next up on their list of potential Eastern Conference victims: the Washington Capitals.

The Caps aren't doing as badly this year as some expected them to. Why would anyone expect the Capitals to be bad? Traditionally they played in the weak Southeast Division and benefited from the lack of competition, so folks started to think that was the reason they made it into the playoffs every year. Right now they're in the hunt with an 11-8-1 record. Not mind-blowing, but not awful. They're in the Metropolitan Division now, though, so the argument that they only played well due to week competition could well still be true. Through 20 games, they have 23 points.

Through 18 games, the Blues have 29. Both teams are in the same place in their respective divisions.

The Blues just wrapped up a five-game homestand where they got nine out of 10 points. They may be tired today, considering that puck drop isn't even 24 hours after the one yesterday, but they have Jaroslav Halak fresh and ready to go in net. You might remember Halak getting into the Caps heads in the playoffs a few seasons ago. I'm sure that the Capitals won't be thrilled to see him.

Check back later on today for a game preview courtesy of CCR, a GDT, and a recap from RBR. Swing by the always excellent Japers' Rink and say hi, and don't forget - early game tonight - puck drop is at 5:00, so place your orders for some early bird specials and get ready for a tough game for the Blues. The Blues' perfect penalty kill'll be challenged by one of the league's top power plays, but things should work out ok as long as the Blues don't allow two shorthanded goals again today on the same power play. Try not to do that, ok?