This Season Has Had Plenty Of Interesting Things For The Capitals Already

We aren't even halfway through the 2023-24 Washington Capitals season. We don't know how it'll end but it certainly hasn't been boring.

New Jersey Devils v Washington Capitals
New Jersey Devils v Washington Capitals / Scott Taetsch/GettyImages
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Max Pacioretty, Washington Capitals
Max Pacioretty, Washington Capitals / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Max Pacioretty

This is going to be the most recent and the last thing we talk about today. Max Pacioretty made his return and Capitals debut the other night vs the New Jersey Devils. It did not look incredibly impressive, he himself even saying so.

I've heard a lot of people talk excitedly about Pacioretty on the team. It's easy to understand why. It's a big name in the NHL, he has had plenty of success in his NHL career. It's easy to get excited when a guy like that joins your team.

I'm still skeptical and incredibly curious how he performs this season. It feels like no one wants to discuss that Pacioretty is 35 years old coming off of two bad Achilles injuries. Similar to how so many people didn't want to talk about Backstrom and him coming off a big hip surgery.

I think it's fine to think positively. But you keep hearing people say "Pacioretty should give this offensive a boost". Are you sure? Yes, 28 year old, healthy Pacioretty should give this offense a boost, but I'm not sure either of those are completely true.

That's why this should be potentially the most interesting thing to watch for the remainder of the season. How much does Pacioretty have left? What does he bring? Does he bring enough? Does he hurt more than he helps? Does he block the young guys from playing, who have been playing pretty well.

Just like Backstrom, you hope injury doesn't do this player in. At the same time, it wouldn't be very surprising if he didn't have much left to give.

There is still plenty to talk about honestly. I just talked about six things that stood out to me. I didn't mention the special teams this season. How the power play has been mostly awful. How the Capitals are among the top teams in their divison despite being a fairly average looking team. Protas deserves some recognition. Oshie still can't stay healthy. There is still a lot of interesting things that have happened this season and I probably forgot an obvious one.

I guess the good thing about not being able to talk about everything? We still have more than half the season to go. We'll see how these things and more play out over the next three plus months.