The following is this week's article for The Washington Post ---
Woe are the Washington Capitals.
Things are so bad in Caps-land these days that there's more talk about the next time the Caps play the hapless New York Islanders (Jan. 20) than there is about the Winter Classic against the Pittsburgh Penguins on New Year's Day.
Okay, just kidding.
The state of the Capitals really isn't that bad. You want bad, go back to Washington's inaugural season 36 years ago when the team won eight games. That was bad. What's going on right now is frustrating - illustrated perfectly by Alex Ovechkin's second-period fight with Brandon Dubinsky in New York on Sunday night - and it is concerning for a team whose season can't be a success unless it ends with a parade.
That's a new kind of pressure for this team, this organization and, in fact, this town. The last D.C. area team that entered a season expecting to win a championship was Maryland's men's basketball team nine years ago. The last professional team that had those sort of expectations was the last team of Joe Gibbs I, which entered 1992 as the defending Super Bowl champions and barely made the playoffs.
The last time the Caps were in this position was . . . never.
Click here for the rest of the column: Time for Caps to trade for a goalie