Caps Heating Up Snowy D.C.

As the weather begins to change and temperatures are dropping in the nation’s capital, the city’s hockey team is beginning to heat up. With a 4-2 victory over the New York Rangers on Friday night, the Capitals won for the fourth straight game. The win moves Washington (18-11-1) into a first-place tie with Columbus in the Metropolitan Division. The victory also moves the Capitals past their nemesis, the Pittsburgh Penguins, who are one of six teams in the division with 32 or more points.

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The Capitals have won eight of 10 games since they embarked on a short two-game road trip to Nashville and Colorado. One of the big reasons why is the play of goalie Braden Holtby. The seven-year NHL veteran stopped 27 shots on Friday night against the Rangers to give him 16 wins for the season. That ties him for second among all NHL goaltenders.

Aside from Holtby who gives the Capitals a chance every night, the play of star Alex Ovechkin has been impressive thus far this season. The perennial All-Star continues to lead the NHL in goals with 21 and has a total of 33 points to lead the Capitals. Ovechkin is the heart and soul of the Capitals, who will go for five in a row on Monday night when they take on the New York Islanders.

Ovechkin and Holtby have received plenty of help from C Evgeny Kuznetsov, who is second on the team with 31 points. In Friday’s win, Matt Niskanen scored his first goal of the season, the game-winner with less than four minutes to play.

“Hockey’s a lot more fun when you’re playing well, playing hard for each other like we are right now,” said Niskanen, a 10-year veteran who has been in Washington for four seasons now.

Niskanen’s goal was a big one coming with 3:22 to play after the Rangers had tied the score at 2-2. There are six teams in the Metropolitan Division that are separated by a mere five points. A regulation win was needed to push the Capitals further up in the standings. Washington coach Barry Trotz is not concerned where his team is in the standings just yet.

“I’m not getting too excited about where we are,” Trotz said. “This whole Metro division is a monster. We’re going to have to deal with it all year.”

Another plus for the Caps has been playing at home. The four straight wins all came in the confines of the Capital One Arena. Since Nov. 2, Washington is 10-2 at home and the team has won 13 of its past 18 games. Only five of those games have been on the road and the Capitals lost three of them.

Washington is going to have win on the road if they are serious about continuing their success. The Capitals have 10 games remaining in December – beginning with the Islanders on Monday – and six of those are on the road. The Caps will face nine different opponents – they play Boston twice – and just one can equal Washington’s 37 points. That is the expansion Vegas Golden Knights.

The Caps continue to start fast. For the fifth game in a row, Washington scored first. Jay Beagle scored just 14 seconds into the win over the Rangers. The Capitals are ninth in the league in scoring averaging 3.1 goals per game. The power play is eighth (21.2 percent). Washington won the last two games without RW T.J. Oshie who is third on the team in scoring with 23 points (13 goals).

Game Preview: Redskins at Chargers w/Nick Hamilton (NBC LA Writer/Reporter)

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With the playoffs seemingly out of reach the DTC boys reset expectations for the Redskins coming off a horrible loss at Dallas (2:20 – 11:30) and now headed to LA to face the streaking Chargers (12:15 – 20:30). Joe feels strongly that the team has a lot to play for as does FP, while LP thinks they should be in tank mode (21:00 – 26:50). Nick Hamilton, a reporter covering both the Chargers and Rams for NBC Los Angeles, joins the show starting after the break (27min mark) and breaks down the key matchups and shares his prediction for the game on Sunday. Can the Redskins travel to LA for the second time this season and pull out another win? Share your thoughts with us! #HTTR #HailVictory (photo: Chargers.com )

Week in Wizards; The Wiz Stink vs Jazz & Stink Less vs Blazers

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LP and Joe discuss all things Wizards and NBA plus a little bit of the Ball family drama and some bitcoin as well in this weeks episode of Week in Wizards. The team came out flat in Utah and rebounded one night later in Portland… so what can we learn about this team from one poor showing and one “less poor” showing? Well first, Brad Beal is a stud, but secondly, this team is going to struggle to replicate their success from last season. LP things 45 to 50 wins is still a reasonable target, Joe disagrees very strongly. If you love the Wizards and the NBA, listen to this episode! (photo credit: WaPo)

Redskins Blow Opportunity, Postseason In Jeopardy After 38-14 Loss

All the momentum generated from the Thanksgiving Day win over the New York Giants fizzled as Washington failed to rise to the occasion and lost 38-14 to the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday night. The loss all but eliminates the Redskins from the postseason. Sitting at 5-7, head coach Jay Gruden and company would need to win out and still get some help in order to qualify for the playoffs.

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The win was the first for the Cowboys since losing star running back Ezekiel Elliott to a six-game suspension. Quarterback Dak Prescott, who had been in a serious funk over the last several weeks, finally got himself right. Prescott didn’t have great numbers – 11-for-22 for 102 yards – but he did throw for two touchdowns and he didn’t make many mistakes. Prescott was sacked just once and didn’t commit a turnover.

Gruden thought his team was ready to play but just couldn’t make plays when they were needed. “I wouldn’t say we weren’t ready to play,” Gruden said. “I think, one, they made a couple plays, and, two, we didn’t make the plays we normally make.”

For the Redskins, it was a game filled with mistakes. Quarterback Kirk Cousins looked impressive at times and did finish the game having completed 26-of-37 passes for 251 and two touchdowns. However, Cousins was sacked four times and threw two interceptions. That was not all. Cousins also fumbled twice losing one of them.

“It was just miscues,” said Cousins. “A dropped ball here, we had a nice drive down the field the second drive, just a tough turnover, and then it was one thing after another that were just mistakes. They happen, and we have to correct them.”

Jamison Crowder committed a few costly mistakes. He was on the receiving end of a Cousins’ pass that Crowder allowed to sneak through his hands. The pass was picked off by the Cowboys’ Jeff Heath. Just minutes later, Crowder then fumbled on a punt return giving the ball right back to Dallas.

Dallas, now 6-6, did not make mistakes and were aided by an outstanding performance by running back Alfred Morris. The Cowboys would rush for 182 yards led by 127 from Morris who carried 27 times and scored in the fourth quarter on a one-yard run.

After a scoreless first quarter, Dallas jumped out to a 17-0 lead thanks, in large part, to a dazzling 83-yard punt return by Ryan Switzer. Cousins and the Redskins would answer though with a nine-play, 75-yard drive that culminated in a 20-yard touchdown pass from Cousins to Ryan Grant with just 59 seconds remaining in the first half.

The second half was all Dallas but for a Josh Docstson 14-yard touchdown reception from Cousins early in the fourth quarter. The loss does not officially eliminate Washington, but the chances of reaching the postseason are slim. To understand how slim – Dallas, Green Bay, Detroit, Atlanta, Seattle, and Carolina must go 5-19 over the course of the next four weeks, and, of course, the Redskins must win out.

Winning out begins with a trip to Los Angeles where Gruden and company have to face the red-hot Chargers. A 19-10 win over the Browns last week gave the Chargers their third straight victory. L.A. is now 6-6 and has a very good chance of winning the AFC West. The Redskins will have to slow a very potent offense led by QB Philip Rivers. More importantly, the Chargers recent success is due to an improved defense that features one of the most feared pass rushes in the NFL. Joey Bosa (11.5) and

Melvin Ingram (8.5) have combined for 20 sacks so far this season.

If history is any indication, the Redskins own a 7-3 record over the Chargers all-time. The Redskins won the last time the two teams met in 2013. The last two times (2001, 2010) Washington played the Chargers on the road – the franchise was in San Diego – the Redskins lost.

Redskins Lose Bad in Dallas; DC Sports Curse; Trump Tweets

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The Redskins went on national TV last night and embarrassed all of their fans and the entire city of Washington DC. It was such a bad performance that Stevie demanded to be heard and joined Joe on Facebook LIVE to vent and air it all out. This is not your regular sports podcast however as when these two get going the destination is always in question. If you want some insight into POTUS tweets or the tax bill, listen to the end. If you only want to hear about the Redskins, there is plenty of that as well in the first 20 minutes as the boys revisit the agony of defeat. Is the Redskins season over? The boys have strong opinions on this but we want to hear yours too! (photo credit: