A pair of losses put an end to Washington’s torrid stretch that lasted more than a month, but the Capitals still have a chance for their longest home win streak in five seasons.
They’ll try for their eighth consecutive victory at the Verizon Center on Tuesday night against the Edmonton Oilers, who ended the longest road losing streak in team history in their last game.
Washington (24-13-8) came into the weekend on a 14-1-4 surge, but suffered a 4-3 loss at Nashville on Friday and a 5-4 defeat at Dallas on Saturday. The Capitals had allowed two goals in their previous three games.
Braden Holtby posted a 1.89 goals-against average during the 19-game hot streak as part of his run of 21 consecutive starts and franchise-record 27 straight appearances. He started against the Predators before giving way to Justin Peters for his first start since Nov. 29 on Saturday.
The Capitals rallied from a 3-0 deficit against the Stars but gave up two goals in a 16-second span in the third period.
"I like the fact that we stayed with it and gave ourselves the chance to get a point at the end," coach Barry Trotz said. "There was a lot of resiliency in the room. It was a back-to-back. A real hard game (Friday) took a lot out of us, but we’ve got to be a little tighter than we were.
"It’s imperative that we get (Tuesday’s game). We have to be hungry. We have to get that game. To me, it’s almost like a (must-win) game."
The Capitals haven’t dropped three straight since a season-high 0-4-1 skid Oct. 26-Nov. 4 and get the chance to avoid that on home ice, where they’ve given up 10 goals in their last seven games.
Washington hasn’t won eight in a row at home since a team-record 13-game streak Jan. 5-March 6, 2010. It will face a team that snapped a 14-game road skid its last time out.
The Oilers (11-26-9) also ended a three-game overall losing streak with their 3-2 shootout victory over Florida on Saturday. Matt Hendricks provided the tying short-handed goal in the third period and Nail Yakupov scored in the extra period.
"It’s always great to get two points before (facing) a pretty good team, Washington," said Yakupov, whose team is 3-12-7 away from home this season. "A couple of days of rest and we’ve got to be ready for the next game."
Edmonton won 3-2 in the first matchup with Washington on Oct. 22, scoring the final two goals. The Capitals outshot the Oilers 23-10 in the final two periods, but Ben Scrivens let just one get past him.
Washington has won its past two home games against Edmonton and eight of nine.
Alex Ovechkin has seven goals and five assists in nine all-time matchups with the Oilers, though he did not record a point Oct. 22. He has nine goals and four assists in his last 10 games overall.
Nicklas Backstrom, seeking his 400th career assist, has recorded five assists and one goal in his past three games against Edmonton.