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Caps Today, 5/19/18

May 19, 2018
The Capitals face the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena on Saturday in Game 5 of the 2018 Eastern Conference Final. The series is tied 2-2. 

Entering Game 5, the Capitals are 7-1 on the road in the playoffs this postseason. Washington leads the League with seven road wins in the playoffs and is one road win away from setting a franchise record (1998). On the road, the Capitals have outscored opponents 30-17 in the playoffs. Including the regular season, the Capitals have won 12 of their last 13 games on the road dating back to March 22 at Detroit. 

TOP GAME NOTES

Kuz Control - Evgeny Kuznetsov recorded his 10th goal of the postseason and extended his point streak to seven games (5g, 7a) in Game 4. That gives Kuznetsov 21 points (10g, 11a) and ties the Capitals’ all-time postseason mark set by Alex Ovechkin (21) in 2009. Additionally, Kuznetsov became the eighth Russian-born player to record double digits in goals for a single playoff year and the fifth to do so at 25 or younger. In 55 career playoff games, Kuznetsov has recorded 40 points (21g, 19a). Kuznetsov is now one point shy of Joe Juneau’s franchise mark in playoff points for 13 th place in franchise history.

The Great Eight – Alex Ovechkin has registered 20 points  (10g, 10a) in 16 games this postseason. Ovechkin's 20 points are one shy of his own and Evgeny Kuznetsov's current mark in a single postseason (21 points in 2009, Kuznetsov: 10g, 11a this postseason). Ovechkin is now four goals shy of the franchise record for most goals in postseason set by John Druce, when he scored 14 goals in 15 games in 1990. In addition, Ovechkin has 56 career postseason goals, which is tied with Steve Larmer and Dennis Potvin for the 42nd most in NHL history. Ovechkin is tied for second in the NHL with 10 goals in the playoffs. Additionally, Ovechkin is tied for third among active NHL players (min. 20 games played) in career playoff goals per game (0.50) and tied for sixth in playoff points per game (0.97). Among the top 10 active career playoff goal scorers, Ovechkin ranks sixth, and his 0.50 goals per game ranks first among player on that list. In 113 career playoff games, Ovechkin has 110 points (56g, 54a), and ranks first in franchise history in playoff games played, goals, points, power play goals (19), power play points (48), game-winning goals (7), shots (516) and second in assists.

Dmitry ScOrlov - Dmitry Orlov scored the opening goal for the Capitals in Game 4, his second goal of the playoffs. This postseason, Orlov ranks first among Capitals defensemen and second among defensemen remaining in the playoffs with at least 250 minutes played with a 53.05 shot attempt percentage (330 shot attempts for, 292 shot attempts against). Additionally, Orlov has been on the ice for 19 of the Capitals' 40 goals at even strength, the most of any player on the team.

Shots Fired - The Capitals have recorded 38 shots in each of their last two playoff games. During the postseason, the Caps rank first with 539 shots on goal, while their 31.56 shots per game rank second among current playoff teams. Washington is led by Alex Ovechkin (69 SOG, first in the NHL), Evgeny Kuznetsov (65 SOG, second in the NHL) and John Carlson (55 SOG, tied for fourth in the NHL)

Spread it Out - The Capitals have scored 16 goals in the first period (second in the playoffs), 20 goals in the second period (tied for first in the playoffs) and 18 goals in the third period (second in the NHL). Additionally, the Capitals 57 goals for and 40 goals at even strength each rank first in the playoffs.

Must Read/See/Hear Material

Dump ‘n Chase: Caps and Lightning Tangle in Game 5 in Tampa / POSTGAME NOTEBOOK: Bolts 4, Caps 2

Washington Post: Capitals’ ghosts of collapses past have suddenly sprung to life / Boswell: The Capitals’ overachieving year threatens, again, to end in doom and gloom

NBC Sports Washington: Capitals at Lightning Game 5 Eastern Conference Finals 2018: Date, Time, How to Watch, live stream

NHL.com: Capitals, Lightning right at home on road entering Game 5 / Capitals focus on discipline for Game 5 against Lightning / Orpik leadership key for Capitals heading into Game 5 against Lightning

AP: Special teams lift Lightning back in East final against Caps

The American Prospect: Washington Metro Sinks into the Swamp in NHL Playoff Miscue

The Athletic: Tom Wilson isn’t looking for your approval, but he’s happy to talk about the game he loves / Home ice disadvantage: Why playing at home isn’t always easy in the playoffs / The end of lower- and upper-body injuries? How increased gambling could impact the NHL (Capitals mentioned) / NHL playoffs probabilities (updated daily)

Fairfax County Times: Alex Ovechkin helps to train youth hockey players in Springfield

Le Journal de Québec: Russians doing the work

National Post: Caps' inexplicable home woes means they'll be thankful to go to Tampa / Get them some water — Ovechkin and the Capitals are choking again / Conn Smythe Trophy ballot is getting crowded in battle for playoff MVP (Capitals mentioned)

Sports Capitol: Capitals must deal with a resurgent Andrei Vasilevskiy

Sports Illustrated: After a Disappointing Career Start in Tampa Bay, Brett Connolly Redeems Himself as a Capital

SportsNet: Lightning favourites hosting Capitals in critical Game 5 / Ovechkin’s pregame meal is old school carb-loading at its best

STATS LLC: Home hasn’t been sweet in Capitals-Lightning series

The Telegram: ROBIN SHORT: Pulling for Ovie, Crosby’s rightful place in Top 10, the Guards are back, and more

Trib Live: First call: Enjoy these images of a frustrated Alex Ovechkin

Washington Business Journal: One of the Nationals' hottest hitters is joining T.J. Oshie as an investor in this startup (Video)

Washingtonian Magazine: Best of Washington (Washington Capitals, Kettler Capitals Iceplex mentioned)

TV/Audio Clips:

Washington Capitals: Barry Trotz | May 18 / Lars Eller | May 18 / Nicklas Backstrom | May 18 / Brooks Orpik | May 18

Japers’ Rink: JRR Episode 85: Jeremy Roenick Swings by The Rink

NBC Sports: Can home team break through in TB-WAS series? / Bolts blocking Ovechkin's shooting lanes

NBC Sports Washington: Capitals Faceoff Podcast: Lightning strike twice / Evgeny Kuznetsov's historic postseason continues

NHL.com: Quest for the Stanley Cup: Episode 3

NHL Network: NHL Now: Ovechkin is Everywhere / NHL Now: Jaffe and Pang / NHL Now: Capitals PK Breakdown / Hat Trick Challenge for Saturday (Capitals mentioned) / NHL Tonight: TBL/WSH Game 4 Recap / NHL Tonight: Tampa PP Breakdown / NHL Now: Killorn's Game Winner

SportsNet: Capitals Need To Isolate Lightning's Power Play Options / The Playbook: Capitals putting on brave face or genuinely confident they can finally win? / Lightning Return To Tampa With New Lease On Life & Series Tied

TSN: What's been the key to the Lightning's turnaround?

TSN Montreal 690: Trial by Listener: Is Vegas winning the Cup best story for NHL? (Capitals mentioned)

TSN Vancouver 1040: Rosen: Capitals didn't seem too upset about Game 4 loss / Walton: Caps dominating series 5-on-5; Vasilevskiy the difference in Game 4

 

Lightning Clips:

NHL.com: Lightning seek to bring road success home in Game 5 against Capitals / Point propelling Lightning power play against Capitals

The Score: Andrei Vasilevskiy has saved the Lightning's season / Solo effort: Breaking down Vasilevskiy's clutch glove save on Connolly

SportsNet: No surprise that Lightning rookie Point’s success is translating to playoffs

TampaBayLightning.com: Lightning vs. Capitals: Projected lines, storylines, injuries

Tampa Bay Times: Chris Kunitz’s name is all over the Stanley Cup. Here’s why / Road wins help reset Lightning’s focus / Lightning journal: Nice to see Alex Killorn’s scoring dry spell end / Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Andrei Vasilevskiy steals Game 4 for the Lightning

GAME NOTES  
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