Taking Over the Castle: Capitals-Kings Preview

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After falling to the Sharks on Thursday night, the Capitals will look to even up their three-game California road trip. Tonight’s game is the first of a back-to-back as the Capitals round out the trip tomorrow night in Anaheim. Puck drop for tonight is at 10:30 PM Eastern and you can catch the game on CSN+. 

The Caps Go Hollywood
Historically, the Capitals have struggled against the Kings with an overall record of 37-54-13-3. The Capitals are 15-31-6-2 all-time in Los Angeles. Last season, Washington went 1-0-1 with each team getting a win on home ice. The Capitals won the first meeting this season 5-0 at Verizon Center on February 5. Washington has earned a point in three consecutive games against the Kings and in four of their last five games against Los Angeles.

SCOUTING THE KINGS
The Kings carry a 32-28-6 record with 70 points. They are currently fifth in the Pacific Division and three points behind the St. Louis Blues for the second wild card spot. Jeff Carter leads the Kings in scoring with 30 goals, 27 assists, and 57 points. Jonathan Quick will get the start in goal tonight against the Capitals. He carries a 3-0-1 record with a 2.46 goals against average and a .920 save percentage.

SCOUTING THE CAPITALS
The Capitals carry a 44-15-7 record, good for 95 points. Washington is first in the Metropolitan Division and in the league, just three points ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Wild. Having lost two in a row entering tonight the Caps look to avoid losing three straight, something they haven’t done since Feb. 2015. Nicklas Backstrom leads the team in points with 67 and in assists with 46. Alex Ovechkin leads the team in goals with 27. Philipp Grubauer will get the start in goal for the Capitals tonight. He shut out the Kings the last time he faced them.

SPECIAL TEAMS
KINGS
Los Angeles is 17th in the league on the power play with a success rate of 19.0%. On the penalty kill, the Kings are ranked third with a 85.2% success rate.

CAPITALS
The Capitals are ninth in the NHL in power play goals with a conversion rate of 21.1%. On the penalty kill, the Caps are ranked fifth with a success rate of 84.4%.

Last Time We Met:
The Capitals won the first meeting on Super Bowl Sunday 5-0 behind 38 saves and a shutout by Philipp Grubauer. It was Grubauer’s third shutout of his career. Prior to that game, the Caps recognized Alex Ovechkin for his 1,000-point milestone.

ICE SHAVINGS

  • Marcus Johansson needs one more goal to reach his 100th of his career.
  • Alex Ovechkin has registered 13 points (five goals, eight assists) in 14 career games against the Kings.
  • The Capitals are 30-3-2 in games where they’ve had one day of rest this season.

GAME LINKS
Game Notes at Los Angeles, 3/11/17 (Capitals PR)
Caps Seek to Topple Kings in Los Angeles (Mike Vogel)
SKATE SHAVINGS: News and Notes From Caps’ Morning Skate (Mike Vogel)

By Michael Marzzacco

 

About Michael Marzzacco

Michael is an avid DC sports fan with a passion for writing. He has followed the Washington Capitals since the 2003-04 season, around the time his enthusiasm for DC teams really began. It was from the days when they had the worst record in the league to when they became the most exciting team in the area. His Dad took him to his first Caps game a couple of years later. One of his favorite memories was being in the stands during the 2015 Winter Classic where Troy Brouwer scored the game-winning goal with 12 seconds left. Michael graduated from Radford University in May 2016, earning a degree in journalism and focusing on sports journalism and broadcasting. His goal is to work in sports media in Washington, D.C.
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