Time off between games is a rarity, if not a luxury during the shortened NHL season as the Capitals churn through 48 contests in 99 days. It makes Washington’s three-day break between Sunday’s game against the Rangers and their next contest against New Jersey at Verizon Center Thursday all the more important.
It’s tied for their longest layoff between games this season – Washington goes three days without a game again March 27-29 – and offers Coach Adam Oates a chance to reinforce and expand upon the systems he’s tried to install over the first 15 games of the season.

“We’ll watch the tape and we’ll figure out which way we want to go with it, positive or negative,” Oates said. “The bottom line is we have to perfect our system and that’s always the goal. You wanna get better at doing every little thing you can, so we’ll figure out which ones we want to work on. But we’ve gotta a couple good practice days to do it.”
The Capitals are taking Monday off, giving the players some much needed rest before regrouping for two thorough days of practice on Tuesday and Wednesday.
“Any break right now is good,” Holtby said Saturday. “We’ve been lucky, knock on wood, that we haven’t had a huge amount of injuries and rest is the best thing for that. There’s a lot of guys battling little things and a couple days off will help us recuperate.”