WASHINGTON — If you feel good, you play good.
The Capitals, like any team, has no interest in seeing their visiting opponents play well against them.
So it's no surprise that visiting teams do not enjoy their locker room when they come to play the Caps in DC.
According to an ESPN poll of active players, 42% of the 50 surveyed players find the visiting locker room at Capital One Arena to be the worst in the NHL.
One player told ESPN, "Washington's showers are so bad. They're like a prison shower. There's a pole in the middle, then just spews that come out of that one pole. Not that I care if someone is showering next to me, but it's just a really weird setup."
I, for one, salute the Capitals for making life a little less comfortable for their opponents.
Capital One Arena isn't a DoubleTree Hotel where guests can get free chocolate chip cookies at the front desk.
When teams play on the road, they expect to be in less than pleasant conditions.
Former Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb didn't look forward to his return to Philadelphia because he felt the visitors' locker room would be small, congested, and probably not clean.
The visitors' locker room at Iowa's Kinnick Field is painted in a soothing pink color aimed at weakening the Iowa Hawkeyes' opponents.
Teams will do just about anything to give themselves an advantage, especially at home.
Now the five arenas with the worst visiting locker rooms, according to the survey, all were opened before 2000. Whereas the four best visiting locker rooms, according to the same survey, reside in arenas opened in 2000 or later.
Capital One Arena opened in 1997.
So while the Caps no doubt want their opponents to feel uncomfortable, don't be surprised if the fact that the Arena is more than 20 years old is a factor as well.
The Capitals do enjoy the home ice advantage.
According to hockey-reference.com, the Capitals have won more than 57% of their games at Capital One.
When the Caps played at US Airways Arena in Landover, MD, the team won less than half of their home games.
So they must be doing something right.