Welcome to Capitals playoff hockey, Barry Trotz

Puck Daddy
New York Islanders left wing Josh Bailey (12) scores a goal past Washington Capitals goalie Braden Holtby during the second period of Game 1 in a first-round NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoffs series, Wednesday, April 15, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
New York Islanders left wing Josh Bailey (12) scores a goal past Washington Capitals goalie Braden Holtby during the second period of Game 1 in a first-round NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoffs series, Wednesday, April 15, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before. Supremely talented, offensively overwhelming team enters the postseason and starts making ill-advised plays, can’t hit the high notes of the regular season and can’t convert on their machine-like power play, because their chances were limited. 

Yeah … it’s a golden oldie for the Washington Capitals. But their Game 1 loss to the New York Islanders was the first time Barry Trotz witnessed the same old song.

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“I was disappointed in a lot of guys, personally. We just need everyone to step up. We’re going to need to respond,” said the coach.

The Islanders scored on a soft goal past Braden Holtby by Brock Nelson at 6:06 of the first period, and then broke a 1-1 tie in the second with a Ryan Strome shot off a faceoff and then a Josh Bailey goal just under seven minutes later, leading to a 4-1 win.

“We looked like a slow team. We’ve got to get better,” said forward Brooks Laich.

The Capitals generated 55 shot attempts against the Islanders, with 25 finding their way to Jaroslav Halak. “I think it was on us. We need to think quicker, and move the puck quicker,” said Laich.

The Caps had 11 giveaways in the game, as Trotz felt they were making passes that were too high risk, with no reward.

“We were trying to make the long passes, and we didn’t get to enough pucks,” he said. “Sometimes the best option is to play small ball. Chip away, instead of swinging for the fences all the time.”

For Trotz, it’s not about how the Capitals played in Game 1; it’s how they learn from it for Game 2.

“It’s how you respond after a disappointment.”

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