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Game Notes vs. Vancouver, 12/11/16

December 10, 2016
Washington 4, Buffalo 1
December 9, 2016 * KeyBank Center * Buffalo, N.Y.
Washington Goals: T.J. Oshie, Jakub Vrana, John Carlson, Marcus Johansson
Shots: WSH: 29; BUF: 28
Power Plays: WSH: 2-3; BUF: 1-5
Three Stars: 1. Grubauer (WSH), 2. Oshie (WSH), 3. Vrana (WSH)

Dec. 8: Recalled Aaron Ness from Hershey (AHL)
Dec. 6: Re-assigned Paul Carey to Hershey (AHL)
Nov. 30: Recalled Paul Carey and Jakub Vrana from Hershey (AHL) and re-assigned Zach Sanford to Hershey

Alex Ovechkin – One power-play goal shy of becoming the 18th player in NHL history to score 200 power-play goals
T.J. Oshie – One game shy of 100 Capitals games played
Barry Trotz – One game shy of passing Mike Keenan (1,386) for ninth place on the all-time NHL games coached list
Evgeny Kuznetsov – One assist shy of 100 NHL/Capitals assists
Nicklas Backstrom – Seven assists shy of 500 NHL/Capitals assists

Jakub Vrana – Scored his first NHL/Capitals goal, Dec. 9 at BUF
Barry Trotz – Passed Mike Keenan (672) for eighth place on the all-time NHL coaching wins list, Dec. 7 vs. BOS
T.J. Oshie, missed seven games (11/20-12/5)
Lars Eller, missed one game (11/20)
Matt Niskanen, missed one game (12/9)
Total Man Games Lost: 9

The Capitals host the Vancouver Canucks at Verizon Center on Sunday in the second and final meeting between the teams this season. Washington defeated Vancouver 5-2 on Oct. 29 at Rogers Arena. The Capitals are 43-39-9-1 all-time against the Canucks and 25-17-4-0 at home against Vancouver. 

Dec. 11
5 p.m.
WFED 1500/Caps 24/7
Dec. 13
at NY Islanders
7 p.m.
WFED 1500/Caps 24/7
Dec. 16
at Carolina
7:30 p.m.
Caps 24/7
Dec. 17
7 p.m.
WFED 1500/Caps 24/7
Dec. 21
at Philadelphia
8 p.m.
Caps 24/7
* All times are Eastern
Keeping It 100 – Evgeny Kuznetsov sits one assist shy of 100 NHL/Capitals assists and T.J. Oshie is scheduled to play in his 100th Capitals game on Sunday against Vancouver. Kuznetsov has earned 136 points (37g, 99a) in 205 NHL/Capitals games and is looking to become the fourth-fastest player in franchise history to reach 100 NHL/Capitals assists, trailing Nicklas Backstrom (138 GP), Alex Ovechkin (159 GP) and Mike Gartner (194 GP). Oshie has registered 65 points (35g, 30a) in 99 games with the Capitals and ranks second on the team in goals (35) and fifth in points (65) since his first season with Washington in 2015-16.

Canuck Killers – The Capitals have won three consecutive games against the Canucks (10/22/15-10/29/16), marking their longest winning streak against Vancouver since they won five straight games from March 12, 1996 to March 28, 1998. T.J. Oshie has earned 21 points (7g, 14a) in 24 career games against the Canucks, marking the fourth-most point he has earned against an NHL team (Chicago: 27, Edmonton: 24, Colorado: 23). Evgeny Kuznetsov has earned eight points (2g, 6a) in six career games against Vancouver and has earned a point in three straight games against the Canucks (10/22/15-10/29/16: 2g, 3a). Andre Burakovsky has earned five assists in five career games against Vancouver and has earned an assist in three consecutive games against the Canucks (10/22/15-10/29/16: 4a).

Charged Up – The Capitals scored two power-play goals on Friday at Buffalo, marking the third time this season they have scored two power-play goals in a game (10/18 vs. COL, 11/16 vs. PIT). Washington has scored nine power-play goals in its last nine games (11/16-12/9) and is 9-1-1 this season in games when it scored a power-play goal. Nicklas Backstrom leads the team in power-play points (10) this season and ranks second in the NHL in power-play points (280) since he entered the NHL in 2007-08, trailing Alex Ovechkin (296).

Movin’ On Up – Barry Trotz sits one game shy of passing Mike Keenan (1,386) for ninth place on the all-time NHL games coached list. On Wednesday against Boston, Trotz passed Keenan (672) for eighth place on the all-time NHL coaching wins list. Since Trotz joined the Capitals at the beginning of the 2014-15 season, Washington leads the NHL in points (256) and ranks second in wins (117). He has posted a 117-51-22 record in 190 games with the Capitals (2014-16) and a 674-530-60-122 record in 1,386 career games with Nashville and Washington (1998-16). 

Saint Nick – Nicklas Backstrom earned two assists on Friday at Buffalo, marking his fourth multi-assist game of the season and his 114th career multi-assist game. Backstrom leads the team and ranks tied for eighth in the NHL in multi-assist games this season and ranks fourth in the NHL in multi-assist games since he entered the NHL in 2007-08. The Gavle, Sweden, native has earned 15 points in his last 12 games (11/15-12/9: 7g, 8a) and leads the Capitals in points (24) and assists (16) this season. In addition, Backstrom is seven assists shy of becoming the 10th Swedish-born player in NHL history to reach 500 assists (493).

You Never Forget Your First – Jakub Vrana scored the game-winning goal on Friday at Buffalo, marking his first NHL goal (5 GP). Vrana, who was drafted by Washington in the first round, 13th overall, in the 2014 NHL Draft, is just the third Capitals player since 2008-09 whose first NHL goal was the game-winning goal, joining Julien Brouillette (2/8/14 vs. NJ) and Dmitry Orlov (1/15/12 vs. CAR).

O Canada – The Capitals have posted a 4-2-0 record against Canadian teams this season. Marcus Johansson leads the team with eight points (6g, 2a) in six games against teams from Canada this season, Nicklas Backstrom has earned seven points (2g, 5a) and Alex Ovechkin (3g, 3a) has earned six points. Last season, the Capitals posted a 14-1-2 record against Canadian teams and outscored opponents teams 60-34. Evgeny Kuznetsov led the team with 19 points (7g, 12a) in 17 games against Canadian teams in 2015-16, while Nicklas Backstrom (7g, 11a) tallied 18 points and Alex Ovechkin (8g, 6a) registered 14 points in 17 games. 

Home Cookin’ – The Capitals have posted a 10-4-0 record at home this season and have won two straight home games (12/5-12/7). Alex Ovechkin leads the Capitals with 15 points (10g, 5a) in 14 home games this season and Nicklas Backstrom has earned 14 points (5g, 9a) in 14 home games. In addition, Ovechkin ranks tied for second in the NHL in home goals this season. Dating back to last season, Braden Holtby has posted an 11-4-2 record with one shutout, a 2.16 goals-against average and a .916 save percentage in his last 17 home games.

Western Bias – The Capitals are 7-2-0 against the Western Conference this season. Marcus Johansson (6g, 4a) and Alex Ovechkin (7g, 3a) lead the Capitals in points against Western Conference opponents this season. Last season, Washington posted a 17-8-3 record against Western Conference teams, marking the second-most wins against the Western Conference among Eastern Conference teams. In addition, Evgeny Kuznetsov led the Eastern Conference in points against the Western Conference, earning 36 points (10g, 26a) in 28 games.

Caps Connections – Karl Alzner was born in Burnaby, British Columbia, located approximately 10 miles east of Vancouver. Brett Connolly was born in Campbell River, British Columbia, located approximately 140 miles northwest of Vancouver.

Getting Defensive – Washington ranks second in the NHL in 5-on-5 goals against (34), fourth in goals against per game (2.19) and sixth in shots against per game (28.4) this season. The Capitals have allowed two goals or fewer in 16 of their 26 games this season and have posted a 13-0-3 record in those games. In addition, Capitals goaltenders have combined for two shutouts this season and rank fourth in the NHL in goals-against average (2.16). Washington is one of just seven teams in the NHL this season to have two goaltenders record a shutout (Chicago, Colorado, Montreal, NY Rangers, Ottawa, Winnipeg).

Last We Met – The Capitals defeated the Canucks 5-2 on Oct. 29 at Rogers Arena in the teams’ last meeting. Marcus Johansson tied his career high with three points (2g, 1a) and T.J. Oshie added two points (1g, 1a). Karl Alzner and Tom Wilson also scored goals for Washington and Philipp Grubauer stopped 23 of 25 shots in the win.

Holt-beast – Braden Holtby stopped 31 of 34 shots on Wednesday against Boston to earn his 12th win of the season. His 12 wins through Washington’s first 26 games this season mark the second-most in his career (2015-16: 16). Wednesday marked Holtby’s sixth 30-save performance of the season and his third straight 30-save game (12/3-12/7). The last time Holtby registered three consecutive 30-save performances was Nov. 27 – Dec. 5, 2015, when he made 30 or more saves in four straight games. The Lloydminster, Saskatchewan native has recorded 30 or more saves in a game 91 times in his career and the Capitals are 63-18-10 in those games. In his last 15 games, Holtby has posted a 10-4-1 record with one shutout, a 2.12 goals-against average and a .926 save percentage. The Lloydminster, Saskatchewan, native has allowed two or fewer goals in 12 of his 20 games this season.

Leave it to Beagle – Jay Beagle has earned a point in three consecutive games (12/5-12/9: 1g, 2a), tying his career-long point streak (12/21/15-12/28/15: 2g, 1a). Beagle has earned 11 points (5g, 6a) this season, marking the most points he has earned through the first 26 games of a season in his career (previous high: 7, 2015-16). The Calgary native has registered 75 points (36g, 39a) in 337 career games and Washington is 55-5-6 all-time in games when Beagle registers a point and 27-1-5 when he scores a goal.

Ovech1kin – Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin earned an assist on Wednesday against Buffalo and now sits just 15 points shy of 1,000 career NHL points (537g, 448a). Ovechkin is aiming to become the 37th player in NHL history to record 1,000 points with one franchise. The Moscow native has earned seven points in his last nine games (11/20-12/9: 4g, 3a) and ranks third in the NHL in shots (104).

O From D – Capitals defensemen have earned a point in 21 of the team’s 26 games this season and have combined to register 47 points (4g, 43a). Washington has posted a 14-4-3 record this season in games when a defenseman records a point. The Capitals rank tied for seventh in the NHL in assists by defensemen (43) and are one of three teams to play just seven defensemen this season (New Jersey, San Jose).

The 2016-17 Washington Capitals media guide is available for download here.