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NHL Preview from The Sports Network

Thursday, November 15th (All times eastern)

Washington Capitals (6-10-1) at Florida Panthers (7-11-1), 7:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - A pair of struggling Southeast Division rivals will meet this evening in Florida, as the Panthers host the Washington Capitals at BankAtlantic Center.

The Panthers have dropped four in a row, while Washington has lost five of its last six contests.

Florida is 0-3-1 during its slide and was handed an overtime loss Tuesday night in Atlanta. Ilya Kovalchuk scored just 25 seconds into the extra session, lifting the Thrashers over the Panthers, 3-2.

With less than 30 seconds gone in overtime, Kovalchuk beat Florida goaltender Craig Anderson with a one-timer from the top of the right faceoff circle.

Anderson ended with 30 saves for Florida. Ville Peltonen and David Booth both scored for the Panthers, who blew a lead late in the contest.

The Panthers are 5-4-0 at home this season but have lost their last two games as the host. Florida will begin a three-game road trip Saturday evening at Carolina.

The Capitals have won just three times in their last 14 outings (3-10-1) and are coming off Saturday's home defeat to Tampa Bay. Vaclav Prospal scored a goal and added two assists as the Lightning disposed of the Caps, 5-2.

Alexander Ovechkin and Tomas Fleischmann tallied for the Capitals, while Olaf Kolzig made 29 saves in defeat for Washington.

Washington's only victory in its last six games was against the Eastern Conference-leading Ottawa Senators on October 8.

The Caps are 4-5-1 as the visiting team this year and are playing the first of two consecutive road tests tonight. Washington will also stop in Tampa on Friday.

Florida has won 13 of its last 17 matchups with the Caps and has taken three straight and six of the last eight meetings with Washington on home ice.

11/15 11:04:56 ET

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