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The Washington Capitals' Cinderella run in the home stretch of the regular season is dangerously close to coming to a quick end in the playoffs if they can't rediscover some of the magic that allowed them to finish first in the Southeast Division. The Caps won 11 of their final 12 games.

But a 4-3 double overtime loss to the Philadelphia Flyers last night in Philly has the Caps down 3-1 in the opening playoff series. After rallying to win Game 1, Washington has now dropped three in a row. The Capitals try to keep their season alive tomorrow night in Washington. Games 6 and 7 -- if they're needed -- would be played Monday and Tuesday in Philadelphia and Washington respectively.

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At the heart of the Capitals' problems is that Alex Ovechkin (right), who was a force of nature during the regular season with an NHL-leading 65 goals, has been held to one goal and four assists against the Flyers. Meanwhile on the Philadelphia side, 5-foot-10 Danny Briere has five goals and two assists.

For the Caps, it should be a pleasure to leave Philly's Wachovia Center where the rowdy crowd laces its support for the Flyers with x-rated expletives aimed at the opposition -- in this case, mainly at Ovechkin.

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Photo credit:  Gene Sweeney/Sun

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