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Caps Today, 3/12/18

March 12, 2018
The Capitals face the Winnipeg Jets at Capital One Arena tonight in the second and final meeting between the teams this season. The Capitals lost in overtime in the most previous game against the Jets 4-3 on Feb. 13. Washington holds a 48-26-5-9 record all-time against Winnipeg.

Since Feb. 19, despite a 5-5-0 record in the last 10 games, the Capitals have out shot opponents 308 to 280, averaging 30.8 shots per game and allowing 28. Additionally, Washington has recorded 280 shots during five-on-five play and have allowed 254. That's the seventh-most shots during that time frame and the 11th-fewest allowed. During that span, Washington has limited their opponents to under 30 shots in six of their last 10 games and in four-straight games. The Capitals have also generated 279 scoring chances at five-on-five since Feb. 19, the third-most in the NHL, through games played March 10. In five-on-five situations where the game has been tied since Feb. 10, the Capitals have generated a 55.66 shot attempt percentage, which is the third-highest shot attempt percentage in the NHL during that time frame. Jakub Vrana leads the team in shot attempt percentage (57.07 shot attempt percentage, 105 for, 79 against) during that time frame.


Jay Beagle: Tuesday, March 13, 8:40 a.m., Sports Junkies, 106.7 The Fan

Barry Trotz: Wednesday, March 14, 8 a.m., Sports Junkies, 106.7 The Fan

John Carlson: Wednesday, March 14, 3:30 p.m., Chad Dukes Versus The World, 106.7 The Fan

This Day in Capitals History

March 12, 2008: Olie Kolzig became the 23 rd goaltender in NHL history to record 300 career regular-season wins as the Capitals beat the Calgary Flames 3-2 at Verizon Center. Kolzig made 24 saves and Alex Ovechkin scored twice, including the game-winning goal with 1:54 remaining in the third period. Additional info on the Caps history and behind-the-scenes stories can be found in '100 Things Capitals Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die'


Search for 600 - Alex Ovechkin is tied for the lead in the NHL with 40 goals this season. Ovechkin's 40th goal, scored on March 3 against the Toronto Maple Leafs, marked the ninth time in Ovechkin’s career he reached the 40-goal mark, becoming the sixth player in NHL history with at least nine 40-goal seasons (Wayne Gretzky: 12; Mario Lemieux: 10; Marcel Dionne: 10; Mike Gartner: 9; Mike Bossy: 9). Ovechkin also became the first player to reach the 40-goal mark this season, the seventh time in his career he became the first player to reach the milestone, setting a new record. Ovechkin sits at 598 career goals, and if he scores two goals within his next 10 games, he would become the fourth player in NHL history to record 600 career goals in under 1,000 games (Gretzky: 718 games; Lemieux: 719 games; Brett Hull: 900 games, per Elias Sports Bureau). In addition, Ovechkin would become the NHL's first player to join the 600 goals club since Jarome Iginla on Jan. 4, 2016 (1,432nd career game) and the only player to make his NHL debut after the 1996-97 season. Ovechkin made his NHL debut on Oct. 5, 2005. Ovechkin is also on pace for 86 points this season, which would be his highest total since the 2009-10 season (109 points, 50g, 59a). Additionally, it would be the first time he's averaged over a point per game in a season since the 2013-14 season, when he recorded 79 points (51g, 28a) in 78 games. Ovechkin is looking to record his eighth 50-goal season of his career. Only Mike Bossy and Wayne Gretzky have more 50-goal seasons, each with nine. No other player has at least seven. This season, 70 percent of Ovechkin's goals have come at even strength (28). That's the third-highest percentage of even-strength goals Ovechkin has scored in his career (2009-10: 74 percent; 2010-11: 78 percent). Since the 2005-06 season, Ovechkin leads the NHL in goals (598), points (1,107), power play goals (224), power play points (430), game-winning goals (100), overtime goals (22, the NHL's all-time mark) and shots (4,831). Ovechkin leads the NHL in goals since 1998-99 despite beginning his NHL career in 2005, and he ranks first in shots taken since the 1994-95 season.

Sweet Nicky - Nicklas Backstrom scored the game-winning goal against the San Jose Sharks on March 10. Backstrom's 778 career points (205g, 573a) rank fourth in franchise history, trailing Mike Gartner by 11 points (789 points). Additionally, Backstrom's 573 assists rank first in franchise history. Backstrom's 778 points rank first among the 2006 NHL Draft class, leading Phil Kessel by 52 points, who ranks second through games played March 10, and his 573 assists are 121 more than Claude Giroux, who ranks second in the 2006 NHL Draft class with 452 assists through games played March 10. Since entering the NHL in the 2007 season, Backstrom’s 573 assists rank third (Henrik Sedin: 594; Joe Thornton: 581) in the NHL. With 573 career assists, Backstrom is now two assists shy of tying Scott Gomez for 98th all-time in career assists.

Feeling Gruby - In his last 23 appearances, which dates back to his 36-save effort against the Calgary Flames on Oct. 29, Philipp Grubauer is 9-6-2 with a 1.83 goals against average and a .939 save percentage, which is the lowest goals against average and the highest save percentage among goaltenders with at least 16 appearances during that time frame. Additionally, Grubauer's .952 save percentage at even strength during that time frame ranks first among goaltenders with at least four appearances since Oct. 29. In his last five appearances, Grubauer has stopped 104 of the 108 shots he's faced (.963 save percentage). In 93 career games with the Capitals, Grubauer has a 2.25 goals against average and a .924 save percentage.

Mr. 100 - Lars Eller recorded a goal against the San Jose Sharks on March 10, marking his 15th of the season. That also marked Eller's 100th career NHL goal and his 27th as a Capital. This season, Eller ranks fourth on the team in goals scored. Eller is now one goal shy of tying his single-season high of 16, set in the 2011-12 season as a member of the Montreal Canadiens. Eller's 33 points this season (15g, 18a) are a career high, and the Capitals are 17-8-1 this season in games where Eller records a point.

Jet Setters – Alex Ovechkin has registered 89 points (45g, 44a) in 62 career games against Winnipeg, ranking first in NHL history in points against the franchise. In addition, Ovechkin’s 89 points against the Jets mark the most points he has earned against an NHL franchise. Since the team moved to Winnipeg at the beginning of the 2011-12 season, Ovechkin has earned a point in 15 of his 20 games against the Jets (15g, 11a). Nicklas Backstrom has earned 46 points (17g, 29a) in 43 career games against the Jets, marking the sixth-most points he has earned against an NHL franchise. Backstrom has earned a point in 14 of his 17 games (10g, 13a) against the Jets since they moved to Winnipeg.

Must Read/See/Hear Material

Dump ‘n Chase: Caps Jet Home to Host Jets / #CapsSharks Postgame Notebook: Two Goals, Two Points / Caps Blank Sharks, 2-0

Washington Post: Philipp Grubauer pulls out all the stops as Capitals blank Sharks

NBC Sports Washington: NHL Power Rankings: Still on track / Game 69 Capitals vs. Jets Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread / You may not realize just how long it's been since the Caps won in San Jose / 3 reasons why the Caps beat the Sharks / Tarik's 3 stars: Backstrom and Grubauer help the Caps keep the Sharks at bay / Game 68 Capitals at Sharks Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread Capitals shut out Sharks, back in first in Metropolitan / Laine, Ovechkin chasing goal-scoring crown for Jets, Capitals / Facts and Figures: Laine on target for Jets (Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals mentioned)

AP: Grubauer’s 24 saves lead Capitals past Sharks 2-0 / Sharks shut out in Saturday matinee

The Athletic: Sputtering offense and a questionable offside play cost Sharks in loss to Capitals

Canadian Press: Grubauer earns shutout as Caps sink Sharks

ESPN: Jets are building toward a title with a young core, while Capitals try to keep Stanley Cup window open

The Hockey News: A Three-Year Glance At The Nhl's Top 10 In Goals, Assists, Points, Wins, Shutouts & More (Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom, Braden Hotby mentioned)

The Mercury-News: No dispute: Sharks fall flat in loss to Washington Capitals / Sharks’ takeaways: ‘it wasn’t offside’ … or was it?

NBC Bay Area: Sharks Shut Out in Saturday Matinee

NBC Sports: The Buzzer: Panthers keep rolling, Devils end Preds’ win streak (Nicklas Backstrom, Washington Capitals mentioned)

Reuters: Capitals salvage road trip, shut out Sharks

San Francisco Chronicle: Sharks come up empty in bid to beat Capitals

Sporting News: Patrik Laine ties NHL lead, hits 40 goal mark (Alex Ovechkin mentioned)

Sports Capitol: Goaltender, Ovechkin’s pursuit of 600 remain big questions upon Capitals’ return

STATS LLC: League’s top scorers collide as Caps host Jets

Tribune Content Agency: Sharks lose to Capitals, 2-0

Winnipeg Sun: The final countdown: Laine and Ovechkin neck-and-neck in Rocket Richard race

WNST: Caps Get Rare Regulation Victory In San Jose

TV/Audio Clips:

Washington Capitals: Postgame Locker Room | March 10 / Barry Trotz Postgame | March 10 / Two-Man Advantage | March 10

NBC Sports Washington: Players Cut: Philipp Grubauer shuts out Sharks in 2-0 win / Tarik El-Bashir's take on Jakub Vrana's upward trend

San Jose Sharks: Postgame vs WSH (3/10): DeBoer / Postgame vs WSH (3/10): Couture / Postgame vs WSH (3/10): LaBanc / Postgame vs WSH (3/10): Pavelski

Jets Clips:

AP: Flyers overcome Laine's 40th goal for narrow win

Artic Ice Hockey: The Weakly Report: 3/4/18-3/10/18 / Recap: Philadelphia Flyers fly by the Winnipeg Jets

The Athletic: Flyers 2, Jets 1: 10 things we learned from a losing streak ended / The Winnipeg Jets have earned the opportunity to rest and think long term Jets win streak snapped at four with loss to Flyers

Winnipeg Free Press: Injuries continue to plague Jets / Laine playing on another level but rest of team having trouble finding net / Laine can't lift Jets over Flyers

Winnipeg Sun: Five keys to Jets vs. Capitals / Poolman draws in Jets defenceman on emergency recall as Enstrom sits