Capitals vs. Penguins preview: Pittsburgh looks to extend 4-game winning streak

Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE

The Pittsburgh Penguins (7-3-0) will host the Washington Capitals (2-7-1) at Consol Energy Center on Thursday night.

It will be the second of three meetings between the two teams this season and the second meeting this week.

Having met on Sunday afternoon in NBC's nationally televised game of the week, the Penguins managed a 6-3 victory over the struggling Capitals.

Pittsburgh will be entering the evening on a four-game winning streak and have recorded victories in five of their last six games. Currently in first place in the Atlantic Division, the team trails the Boston Bruins by one point for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.

Washington will be coming into the night on the opposite end of the spectrum, as the team is in the cellar of the Southeast Division and claims ownership to the lowest point total in the entire league.

With rookie head coach Adam Oates at the helm, the club has been experimenting with all kinds of strategies ranging from line combos to what position captain Alex Ovechkin is playing.

Ovechkin has gotten off to a slow start this season having only registered five points (two goals, three assists) in ten games. The team is also struggling to offensively produce this season as they are only averaging 2.30 goals per game (ranked 24th). This is in stark contrast to the potent offense the Capitals boasted a few years ago and has many questioning what happened to the team.

Michal Neuvirth (1-4-1; .893 save percentage, 2.99 GAA) has already been announced as the Capitals' starter. He will face Marc-Andre Fleury (4-2-0; .907 save percentage, 2.44 GAA).

Thursday's game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., ET and will be televised on NHLN-US, CSN-DC and ROOT.

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