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Caps Today, 3/9/13

Today’s Storyline
The Washington Capitals begin a back-to-back weekend against two teams from New York as they face the Islanders today at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

Thursday marked Braden Holtby’s 11th consecutive start in goal for Washington. He has gone 8-3-0 in those 11 games. John Erskine scored his 11th goal as a Washington Capitals and the team is now 11-0-0 when Erskine tallies a goal in a game. 11 different Caps players recorded a point in Thursday’s win over Florida.

Washington’s team stats in the first 11 games of the season:

Record: 2-8-1

Goals per game: 2.27

Goals-against per game: 3.73

PP: 21.4%  PK: 70.6%

Washington’s team stats in its last 11 contests:

Record: 8-3-0

Goals per game: 3.73

Goals-against per game: 2.00

PP: 38.2%  PK: 85.7%


Must Read/See/Hear Material Caps Make Lone Visit to Island
Monumental Network: Karl Alzner 3/8/13 / Aaron Volpatti 3/8/13 / Adam Oates 3/8/13 / Rinkside Update 3/8/13 / Monumental Today 3/8/13

Washington Post: Capitals Insider: Adam Oates uses rout of Florida to manage Capitals’ minutes / Capitals Insider: Mike Green skates, Philipp Grubauer practices with Capitals / DC Sports Bog: The Caps’ Tribute to Stompin’ Tom Connors / DC Sports Bog: Ryan Kerrigan Hangs with the Caps

Washington Times: Capitals well-prepared for busy week / Morning after analysis: Capitals 7, Panthers 1 / Capitals Watch: Mike Green (groin injury) skates before Caps practice / Capitals Watch: Will Philipp Grubauer make first NHL start for Caps this weekend?

Washington Examiner: Loose Pucks: Caps prepare to face Islanders on Saturday

CSN Washington: Capitals’ next stop: Long Island / Oates considering Grubauer to start / Green skates, Johansson nears return / Capitals introduce return of Courage Caps / DART 4 – Pack of fan questions – 3/8 Capitals visit Islanders with both teams rising

Associated Press: Washington at New York Preview Even After 7-1 Drubbing of Panthers, Capitals All Business
Teds Take: Courage Caps / Wizards vs. Nets Tonight / Online Politics List / “High School Record” / Caps Now Ranked Seventh in NHL For Goals Scored

Recent Transactions
March 7 Recalled Philipp Grubauer from Hershey
March 6 Roman Hamrlik claimed off of waivers by the New York Rangers
March 4 Signed and recalled Steven Oleksy from Hershey

Injury Update
D Mike Green – day-to-day
D Jack Hillen – day-to-day
F Brooks Laich – day-to-day
F Marcus Johansson – day-to-day

G Michal Neuvirth – day-to-day

Top 5 Caps Facts

An island by themselves – The Capitals are 13-2-1 in their last 16 games against the Islanders. In that span, Washington has outscored New York 55-41.

German engineering – Goaltender Philipp Grubauer was recalled from Hershey on March 7 and served as the backup to Braden Holtby that night vs. Florida. He made his NHL debut on Feb. 27 at Philadelphia, stopping all 14 shots he faced in his 25:05 of playing time. Grubauer became the second German goaltender to play for Washington, following current Capitals associate goaltending coach Olie Kolzig. He became the 24th German-born player in NHL history and the fourth goaltender, following Michel Larocque, Thomas Greiss and Timo Pielmeier (Kolzig was born in South Africa). 

Quite a start – Capitals defenseman Steve Oleksy was signed and recalled from Hershey on March 4. He made his NHL debut on March 5 vs. Boston and tallied his first career NHL point (an assist). On March 7 vs. Florida, Oleksy collected his first career multi-point game with two assists and led the Capitals in ice time (22:13) and blocked shots (4). 

Explosive offense – The Capitals scored four goals in the game’s first 8:10 on March 7 vs. Florida. That marks the second-fastest four goals scored to start a game in Capitals history. The first came in 6:49 on 1/21/86 vs. the Minnesota North Stars. The four first-period goals tied a season high for a single period while the seven goals scored were a single-game high this season for Washington.

Seeking 700 – Alex Ovechkin has collected 699 career NHL points in his first eight seasons in the league. Ovechkin is one point shy of becoming just the third player to record 700 points while with Washington and would become just the 22nd player in NHL history to record 700 or more points in their first eight seasons in the league.