WASHINGTON — The Wizards and the Capitals are both very good teams.
The Wizards are 42-28, in third place in the Eastern Conference and have won 40 of their past 60 games. The Capitals are 47-17-8, lead the league with 102 points and have the best goal differential in hockey (plus-71). There shouldn’t be much reason to complain in a city so desperately starved for even a glimpse at success.
But both teams are in something of a rut.
The Wizards needed a late-season run to stay in contention for the second seed in the East, and they only needed to win nine of their final 17 games to secure their first 50-win season since the 1978-79 season. Instead, they dropped four of their next five games, three of which came against sub-.500 teams, and now they need to go 8-4 over their final 12 games — including road games against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Clippers, Utah Jazz and Golden State Warriors — to get to that elusive 50-win mark.
They still need just five victories to achieve their highest win total since the 1970s, but that mark seemed a foregone conclusion a week ago.
The Capitals endured a four-game losing streak over the first half of March. On February 17, they boasted a 39-11-6 record; on March 17, their record had dropped to a more modest 45-17-8. They have since rebounded with three wins over their past four games.
But which of the two teams is most concerning for local fans? Grant Paulsen took on this topic Tuesday during Grant and Danny (minus Danny, who was sick) on 106.7 The Fan, and plenty of callers chimed in.
The consensus, if one can be established, is the Wizards are most worrisome. The full conversation is available below. Take a listen, then give us your input in the poll that follows.