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Game Notes vs. Minnesota, 3/14/17

March 13, 2017
LAST GAME
Anaheim 5, Washington 2
March 12, 2017 * Honda Center * Anaheim, California
Washington Goals: John Carlson, Marcus Johansson
Shots: WSH: 27; ANA: 32
Power Plays: WSH: 1-5; ANA: 1-6
Three Stars: 1. Perry (ANA), 2. Getzlaf (ANA), 3. Kesler (ANA)

RECENT TRANSACTIONS
March 7: Re-assigned Paul Carey to Hershey (AHL)
March 7: Signed Kris Bindulis and Hampus Gustafsson to entry-level contracts

CAPITALS MILESTONES WITHIN REACH
Tom Wilson – One game shy of 300 NHL/Capitals games played
Karl Alzner – Two assists shy of 100 NHL/Capitals assists
Nicklas Backstrom – Three goals shy of passing Bobby Carpenter (188) for eighth place on the franchise goals list
Braden Holtby – Four games shy of 300 NHL/Capitals games
T.J. Oshie – Four points shy of 100 Capitals points

CAPITALS MILESTONES RECENTLY ACHIEVED
Marcus Johansson – Scored his 100th NHL/Capitals goal, March 12 at ANA

INJURIES/ILLNESSES
T.J. Oshie, missed 13 games (11/20-12/5, 1/9, 1/26, 2/24-3/2)
Andre Burakovsky, missed 13 games (2/11-3/12)
John Carlson, missed six games (1/16-1/26)
Matt Niskanen, missed three games (12/9, 2/24-2/25)
Brooks Orpik, missed three games (2/24-2/28)
Lars Eller, missed one game (11/20)
Jay Beagle, missed one game (1/24)
Justin Williams, missed one game (2/1)
Total Man Games Lost: 40

TONIGHT’S GAME
The Capitals return to Verizon Center on Tuesday to host the Minnesota Wild. Tuesday’s game marks the first of two meetings between the teams this season. Washington and Minnesota will conclude the season series on March 28 at Xcel Energy Center.

UPCOMING GAMES

DATE
OPPONENT
TIME
TV
AUDIO
March 14
Minnesota
7 p.m.
CSN
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
March 16
Nashville
7 p.m.
CSN, NHLN
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
March 18
at Tampa Bay
7 p.m.
CSN
104.7 FM, Caps 24/7
March 21
Calgary
7 p.m.
CSN
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
March 23
Columbus
7 p.m.
CSN
104.7 FM, WFED 1500, Caps 24/7
* All times are Eastern

NOTE OF THE NIGHT
Battle Between the Pipes – Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby and Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk are two of three goaltenders in the NHL this season to rank in the top-five in goals-against average, save percentage, wins and shutouts (Sergei Bobrovsky). In addition, Holtby and Dubnyk are two of four goaltenders to record 30 wins in each of the last three seasons (Henrik Lundqvist, Tuukka Rask). This season, Holtby has recorded more shutouts (8), posted a lower goals-against average (2.03), and a higher 5-on-5 save percentage (.937) than Dubnyk. Since 2012-13, Holtby leads the NHL in wins (169) and shutouts (28).

TOP FIVE CAPS FACTS
Taming The Wild – Washington has won three consecutive games against Minnesota and five of its last six home games against the Wild (5-1-0). Alex Ovechkin has recorded 14 points (10g, 4a) in 10 career games against Minnesota. He has earned a point in eight consecutive games against the Wild (10g, 3a) and in nine of his 10 career games against Minnesota. Nicklas Backstrom has earned nine points (1g, 8a) in 10 career games against Minnesota and has recorded six assists in his last three games against the Wild. Braden Holtby is 5-2-0 in his career against Minnesota with one shutouts, a 2.28 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage and has won three consecutive games against the Wild.

Holt-beast – Braden Holtby leads the NHL in goals-against average (2.03) and shutouts (8) this season, ranks third in wins (34) and fifth in save percentage (.926). Holtby posted a 21-game point streak from Dec. 29 to March 4 (19-0-2), marking the third-longest point streak in franchise history, trailing Jose Theodore in 2009-10 (20-0-3) and himself last season (20-0-2). In addition, Holtby joined Pete Peeters (1979-80, 1982-83) as the only goalies in NHL history to post two single-season unbeaten streaks of 20 or more decisions. The Lloydminster, Saskatchewan, native is aiming to become the third goaltender in NHL history to record three consecutive 40-win seasons, joining Martin Brodeur (2005-08) and Evgeni Nabokov (2007-10).

Home Sweet Home – The Capitals have posted a 27-6-1 record at home this season and have earned a point in 20 of their last 22 home games (12/5-3/6: 19-2-1). Washington posted a franchise record 15-game home winning streak (1/1-3/4) and a franchise record 17-game home point streak (12/23-3/4: 16-0-1) this season. The Capitals’ 15-game home winning streak is tied for the sixth-longest in NHL history and Washington is just three wins shy of tying the franchise record for wins at home in a season (1985-86, 2009-10: 30). The Capitals lead the NHL in goals against per game (1.68) at home this season, rank tied for first in home wins and second in goals per game (3.44). Nicklas Backstrom leads the team and ranks third in the NHL with 42 points (13g, 29a) in 34 home games this season. Braden Holtby leads the NHL in goals-against average (1.77) and shutouts (7) at home this season and ranks tied for first in wins (22) and tied for fourth in save percentage (.930).

Sharp Shooters – T.J. Oshie has scored 26 goals on 113 shots this season and leads the NHL in shooting percentage (23.0%). In addition, Marcus Johansson ranks tied for third in the NHL in shooting percentage (21.0%) and Brett Connolly ranks seventh (19.4%). The Capitals lead the NHL in shooting percentage (10.8%) this season.

Power Surge – The Capitals have scored 24 power-play goals in their last 29 games (1/9-3/12), posting a 28.2% power-play percentage during that span. Washington ranks seventh in the NHL in power-play percentage this season (21.3%) and has posted a 29-5-2 record in games when it scores a power-play goal. Since Jan. 1, the Capitals rank tied for first in the NHL in power-play goals (25). Nicklas Backstrom ranks tied for fourth in the NHL in power-play assists (20) and in power-play points (26) and Alex Ovechkin ranks tied for fourth in power-play goals (12). In addition, Kevin Shattenkirk ranks tied for second among defensemen in power-play goals (7), tied for third in power-play points (22) and tied for sixth in power-play assists (15).

ADDITIONAL CAPITALS NOTES
Last We Met – The Capitals defeated the Wild 3-2 on Feb. 26, 2016 at Verizon Center in the teams’ last meeting. Alex Ovechkin scored the game-tying goal in the third period, marking his 40th goal of the season, and Dmitry Orlov scored the game-winning goal with 5:04 remaining in the third period. Nicklas Backstrom (2a) and Alex Ovechkin (1g, 1a) recorded multi-point games and Braden Holtby made 30 saves in the victory.

Finding A Rhythm – The Capitals are 30-4-2 this season in games when they have one day of rest and will play 44 games this season with one day of rest.

Saint Nick – Nicklas Backstrom tallied an assist on Sunday at Anaheim and has earned 21 points in his last 19 games (8g, 13a). In addition, he has recorded a point in 23 of his last 31 games (1/5-3/12: 12g, 26a). The Gavle, Sweden, native has scored 21 goals this season, marking his most goals in a season since 2009-10 (33) and the third-most goals he has scored in a season in his career (10 seasons). Backstrom ranks third in the NHL in assists this season (47) and tied for seventh in points (68). Since he entered the NHL in 2007-08, Backstrom ranks third in the NHL in assists (524) and sixth in points (710). In addition, he ranks second among active NHL players (min. 200 GP) in career assists per game (0.73).

The Great Eight – Alex Ovechkin recorded an assist on Sunday at Anaheim and has earned 26 points in his last 29 games (9g, 17a). Ovechkin has earned 29 assists this season and is one assist shy of recording 30 assists in a season for the seventh time in his career and the first time since 2010-11 (53). He ranks tied for second in the NHL in shots (252) this season, tied for fourth in power-play goals (12) and tied for fifth in game-winning goals (7). In addition, Ovechkin ranks ninth among forwards in the NHL this season in hits (187) and sits two power-play points shy of becoming the 28th player in NHL history to record 400 career power-play points.

How The West Was Won – Washington has posted a 14-7-0 record against Western Conference opponents this season, including wins in nine of their last 14 games. The Capitals will play seven of their next nine games against Western Conference teams. Nicklas Backstrom leads Washington with 20 points (4g, 16a) in 21 games against Western Conference opponents this season.

Good Mojo – Marcus Johansson scored a goal on Sunday at Anaheim, marking his 100th NHL/Capitals goal. Johansson has earned 277 points (100g, 177a) in 487 career games with Washington and is the fourth Swedish-born player to score 100 goals with the Capitals, joining Bengt-Ake Gustafsson (196), Nicklas Backstrom (186) and Calle Johansson (113). Johansson has scored a career-high 22 goals this season and sits two points shy of tying his career high in points (2014-15: 47).

Big Willie Style – Tom Wilson is scheduled to play in his 300th NHL/Capitals game on Tuesday against Minnesota. Wilson has earned 66 points (20g, 46a) in 299 career games with Washington and played in all 82 games in 2013-14 and 2015-16. Since he entered the NHL in 2013-14, Wilson ranks eighth in the League among forwards in hits (858). 

Even Steven – The Capitals lead the NHL in 5-on-5 goals against (93) and goal differential (+60) this season and rank third in 5-on-5 goals (153). Washington’s 5-on-5 goal differential is 24 goals higher than the next closest team (Minnesota: +36). 

Caps Connections – Taylor Chorney (Shattuck-St. Mary’s), Matt Niskanen (Virginia/Mountain Iron-Buhl), T.J. Oshie (Warroad) and Nate Schmidt (St. Cloud Cathedral) played high school hockey in Minnesota and Niskanen (University of Minnesota Duluth) and Schmidt (University of Minnesota) played college hockey in Minnesota.

O From D – Capitals defensemen have earned a point in 59 of the team’s 68 games this season and have combined to register 146 points (21g, 125a). Washington has posted a 42-11-6 record this season in games when a defenseman records a point. The Capitals rank first in the NHL in assists by defensemen this season (125), third in even-strength points (112) and tied for third in points (146).

Barry Good – Since Barry Trotz became head coach in 2014-15, the Capitals lead the NHL in wins (145), points (316), goals against per game (2.31) and power-play percentage (22.9) and rank second in goals per game (3.03) and tied for fourth in penalty kill percentage (83.4). In addition, Washington is 105-1-7 since 2014-15 when leading with 10 minutes left in regulation.

Great Goaltending – Capitals goaltenders lead the NHL in goals-against average (2.14) and shutouts (11) this season. Braden Holtby earned his eighth shutout of the season on March 2 against New Jersey and the Capitals’ 11th shutout of the season (Philipp Grubauer: 3 SO), marking the most shutouts in a season in franchise history. Holtby and Grubauer broke the previous franchise record of nine shutouts in a season, set in 1995-96 (Jim Carey: 9) and 2014-15 (Holtby: 9). In addition, this season marks the third time in franchise history two goaltenders have recorded three or more shutouts, joining 1983-84 (Al Jensen: 4, Pat Riggin: 4) and 2011-12 (Tomas Vokoun: 4, Michal Neuvirth: 3).

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

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