Capitals Thump Penguins 4-1; Holtby Wins his 200th Game

Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images

The Washington Capitals beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-1 Friday night at Capital One Arena. The win improved the Capitals record to 9-7-1, 19 points for the season. The Capitals next host Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers Sunday night at Capital One Arena. Puck drop is 7:00 PM. 

Braden Holtby got the start in goal for the Capitals. Matt Murray got the start in the cage for the Penguins.

Nathan Walker and Aaron Ness were the healthy scratches for this one. Matt Niskanen, Brett Connolly and Tyler Graovac missed the game due to injury.

This was Dmitry Orlov’s 300th career NHL game.

This was the 370th consecutive sellout at Capital One Arena.

A fairly good start for Washington in this one, with the Capitals leading in shots on goal 6-2 at the midway point of the period. Action was physical as well. Devante Smith-Pelly would knock Brian Dumoulin out of the game with a clean hit early in the opening frame. Later Liam O’Brien and Ryan Reeves would drop the gloves at the 10:26 mark of the opening frame.

The Capitals would strike first with a power play goal by John Carlson at the 14:09 mark of the opening frame.

John Walton with the radio call:

The period would end with the Capitals leading 1-0. The Capitals led in shots on goal 9-7 for the first 20 minutes. The Capitals led in hits 15-8 in the first period. The Capitals were 1 for 2 and the Penguins were 0 for 2 on the power play.

The Capitals continued physical play and steady pressure in the Penguins zone to start the second period. However, the Penguins would eventually tie the game on a goal by Phil Kessel at the 8:26 mark of the middle frame. The shot was deflected into the goal off of Dmitry Orlov’s stick.

Kris Letang would be called for a pair of 2-minute penalties at the 14:10 mark of the middle frame. T.J. Oshie would give the Capitals the lead with one second remaining in the 4-minute man-advantage at 18:09 on the second period.

The radio call from John Walton:

The second period would come to a close with the Capitals leading 2-1. Washington led in shots on goal 12-9 for the second period, and led 21-16 after two periods of play. The Caps were 2 for 5 and the Penguins 0 for 2 on the man-advantage through two periods of play.

The Penguins would get a power play just 1:16 into the final frame when Jakub Vrana was called for holding the stick, but the Capitals penalty kill and Braden Holtby would shut it down. The Penguins would return to the power play shortly after that when Madison Bowey was called for cross checking at the 4:16 mark of the final frame, but once again the Penguins would come up empty.

The Capitals continued the offensive push and would finally notch a tally when Chandler Stephenson poked one home at the 13:42 mark, giving the Capitals a 3-1 lead. The goal was setup by a fantastic pass

The radio call by John Walton:

Jakub Vrana would add an empty netter to make it 4-1. The box score is here.


  • Braden Holtby won his 200th career NHL game.
  • The Capitals improved to 5-2-3 against the Penguins over the last 10 meetings.
  • John Carlson led the team with 28:43 of ice time.
  • Carlson has led the team in ice time in 14 of the 16 games this season.
  • Coming into tonight’s game, Carlson averaged 27:13 minutes per game, the highest average in the NHL this season.

By Jon Sorensen


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About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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17 Responses to Capitals Thump Penguins 4-1; Holtby Wins his 200th Game

  1. Anonymous says:

    Holtby won the game tonight… they say the playoffs are set by Thanksgiving…. 2 points from first to sixth? I would bet the pens will miss the playoffs before the caps… still waiting for Walker to get more time and a trade for young D

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