Loui Eriksson, Dallas Stars on the rise 

December, 20, 2010

Did you see that celebration by the Washington Capitals after they rallied from two goals down to beat the Ottawa Senators 3-2 in Ottawa last night? You might have thought they'd just clinched a playoff round!

I guess that's the kind of joy you feel when you break an unexpected eight-game (0-6-2) slide. You could feel the entire organization take a collective sigh of relief after putting that one in the win column. We should see/hear more of it during the next edition of HBO's "24/7" series (more on that later).

Now the Caps return home to face the struggling New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night. Can they make it two in a row? Well, the last time these two teams met, the Devils enjoyed one of their few bright moments of the season, blasting the Caps 5-0 in Newark on Nov. 22.

I have a feeling it might be different this time. Who knows, Alex Ovechkin might even score a goal. The Great 8 hasn't lit the lamp in six games and he has only two goals in his past 17 games. That's very un-Ovi like, no?

Here are few other puck thoughts for you. It's the Monday 10.

1. If you're wondering why the Dallas Stars are sitting atop the Pacific Division, holding a four-point lead over the second-place San Jose Sharks; you need look no further than their league-best 14-2-3 record in one-goal games. An even closer exam will show that 11 of their past 12 victories have been of the one-goal variety.