"I told all the players all the players I've bumped into not to pick the next two games to break their streak. We want to be invited back," joked Bradley at the team's practice facility on Monday. "All the dads are cheering as best we can to keep it going. At some point, they're going to lose. We'd just prefer it not be while we're on the trip."
The Capitals will attempt to run their consecutive wins streak to a franchise-best 11 in professional hockey's bizzaro spin on "Take Your Daughter to Work Day." Like many other teams around the NHL, the Capitals invite the father of each player along on a road trip each season.
This one just happens to come as the Caps (37-12–6) look to best a 26-year-old franchise mark against the foundering Boston Bruins (23-21–9) on Tuesday. The fathers will also be in tow as the Capitals travel to play the New York Rangers on Thursday.
"I think we've had success on the fathers trip and guys always play hard," Boudreau said. "We are going into buildings that are normally very tough. Even though Boston has been struggling, they've played very well and lost in overtime. They are ready to turn it around."
Boston has lost seven in a row, the longest skid since the shootout was added before the 2005-06 season. Back when you could earn a tie, the Bruins went nine games without a win during the 2002-03 season. The Bruins haven't lost eight in a row in more than 50 years and have a little ways to go before they set the franchise marks for consecutive losses (11) set in 1924-25.
The Bruins have scored two goals or less in seven of their last eight contests, but they're getting healthier. Forwards Marco Sturm, Steve Begin, Byron Bitz, Marc Savard and Patrice Bergeron have all returned from injury over the last two weeks, adding some much needed offensive depth to the lowest scoring team in the league (2.34 goals per game).
Meanwhile, the Caps have been dominant as they matched the longest streak in the league over the last two seasons, scoring an average 4.8 goals per game and allowing an average of 2.1 over the last 10.
Washington has also been impressive on the so-called "mentors trip," compiling a 3-1-1 record, according to some of the fathers who were on the last two trips. But regardless of the outcome, both father and son get plenty from these outings.
Most of the fathers arrived in time for Sunday's 3-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lighting on Sunday. On Monday, they attended Washington's optional skate.
"If you can control the dads things are even better," joked Brendan's father, Ron. "It's a great time. You get to be with the team and your son, so you get to see what their job is all about and all the things they go through -- the anxieties and the pressures."
This year, the fathers are getting a field trip: a tour of the Samuel Adams Brewery.
"I hope they make it back in time for the game," chided Boudreau. "They will be loud with some security around them, I hope."
Some teams allow the fathers and sons to room together, but the Caps give the fathers their own quarters at the team hotel -- and for good reason, according to Washington winger Eric Fehr.
"The dads like to come in a little bit late sometimes," Fehr said.
The elder Morrison didn't deny the fathers can get a little rowdy and stay out well past the curfew they once set for the sons.
"There's usually some guys taking care of the other guys," Morrison smirked. "I am one of the early ones."