7:00 PM
Verizon Center
Listen to the game at [WXDX]
Know the Enemy:

Where's Sidney? Sidney Crosby, who is tied with Ovechkin for the league lead with 45 goals, hasn't scored in 5 straight games and has only 3 to his credit since returning from Vancouver. In the two meetings this season, the Great 8 has tallied 5 goals and 2 assists while Crosby has mustered 3 goals. Evgeni Malkin has 5 assists against the Capitals this season.

Flashing lights and sirens and bells and whistles and monster truck announcing and "Rock the Red" and "OMG PASSION!!!!"
Okay, that's out of our system.
Hate Week continues.
Welcome to the Verizon Center.
Home of red clothing and postseason collapses.
Like them or not, the Washington Capitals are a good hockey team.
The last time we were here the Pens braved a snowstorm to blow a 4-1 lead and lose in overtime.
The Caps lead in a bunch of offensive statistics.
They also lead the Eastern Conference and the League.
There's a chance that the road to repeat will go through Washington this spring.
We wouldn't want it any other way.
There's also some rivalry between some guy named Ovechkin and this other guy named Crosby, but we've heard nothing about that.
Evgeni Malkin is doubtful for tonight.
Brooks Laich, Boyd Gordon and Scott Walker are out for the Caps.

Several Capitals players were interviewed after a chiropractor that has worked with the team was arrested and charged with obtaining performance-enhancing drugs including steroids.
The Capitals issued the following statement:

Florida law enforcement authorities have continued their steroid investigation following the arrest of Florida resident Richard Thomas in May 2009. The Washington Capitals are not the target of this investigation, and there is no evidence that steroids were provided to any Capitals players.  

This has been a thorough investigation, and we are satisfied that law enforcement, the NHL and our own internal investigation have not led to any link of steroid use by Capitals players.   

The investigation included conversations with the Washington Capitals as far back as September 2009, and we were and have been fully cooperative and transparent in the past as well as today.  

Dr. Douglas Owen Nagel, a Virginia chiropractor who was arrested today, is not affiliated with the Washington Capitals and is not the “team chiropractor,” as he has stated. Dr. Nagel’s office, however, has seen some of our players for standard, routine chiropractic services.  

As part of the NHL’s drug policy, Capitals players are randomly tested up to three times per year by an independent testing agency, which sends the samples to the World Anti Doping Association for testing. Capitals players have been tested twice so far this year. At no time in our history has a Capitals player ever tested positive.

Projected Penguins Lines:
Chris Kunitz – Sidney Crosby – Pascal Dupuis
Alexei Ponikarovsky – Jordan StaalRuslan Fedotenko
Matt Cooke – Max Talbot  – Bill Guerin
Mike Rupp – Craig Adams – Tyler Kennedy

Sergei Gonchar – Mark Eaton
Brooks Orpik – Kris Letang
Jordan Leopold – Alex Goligoski

Marc-Andre Fleury

Jose Theodore will be in net for the Caps.

There isn't much else left to say here.
These are the top two teams in the Eastern Conference going head-to-head.
The Pens haven't played to their potential recently, but they should be able to step it up against a familiar foe.
Do it.

Go Pens.