Loui Eriksson, Dallas Stars on the rise

Updated: December 20, 2010, 9:36 AM ET
By E.J. Hradek

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.