What do the Washington Capitals need to do for their final eight games?

Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

We are getting to that home stretch of the 2022-23 season and for Washington Capitals fans it couldn’t end soon enough. Six points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins for the second wild card spot with eight games to go. A possible 16 points still up for grabs.

But it looks like the playoffs will be just out of reach. So how do you approach these final eight games? Get Alex Ovechkin all the goals he can get. And you also have to let the kids play. Even guys like Hendrix Lapierre if possible.

Let’s start with Ovechkin. He has 42 goals after scoring in Pittsburgh the other night. He has 822 on his career. Eight goals away from 50 so it’s still in play. And with 72 away from Wayne Gretzky it could take him a season and a half to catch the great one.

Now let’s talk about the kids. They deserve to play more than players that just skate just to skate like Anthony Mantha, who made a costly turnover that perhaps sunk the Caps playoff hopes.

Hendrix Lapierre could be an option as the Capitals are currently without Sonny Milano for a bit and now very likely could be without Craig Smith as well as he left practice today 10 minutes in with a lower body injury.

Aliaksei Protas has been skating on the third line. Nicolas Aube Kubel has skated on the fourth line. Having Lapierre or even Connor McMichael in Mantha’s place could benefit them during these last eight games to make them competitive against their opponents and make the games interesting and at the very least watchable.

Hot. Making the case why Capitals should call up Hendrix Lapierre. light

On Wednesday night the Capitals host the New York Islanders in a nationally televised game on TNT. That is the first game of a back to back as they are on the road against the Tampa Bay Lightning the next night.