News and Notes from Capitals Morning Skate – 11/10/2017: Home Cooking

Photo: @Capitals

The Capitals return home from a one-game road trip to take on the Pittsburgh Penguins at 7th and F Street tonight. Here are the news and notes from the morning skate. 

News:
Brett Connolly is the closest to returning to the lineup. He will not play tonight against Pittsburgh but it is possible that he can return on Sunday against the Edmonton Oilers. Connolly has missed six games since taking a hit from Vancouver Canucks’ defenseman Erik Gudbranson in a 6-2 loss to the Canucks on October 26.

Liam O’Brien is expected to play against the Penguins tonight on the fourth line with Jay Beagle and Alex Chiasson. Forward Jakub Vrana is expected to play on the third line with Lars Eller and Tom Wilson. That means that Chandler Stephenson will take his spot on the top line next to Nicklas Backstrom and T.J. Oshie. Backstrom is on a career-long seven-game point scoring drought while Oshie has two assists in his past eight games.

Defenseman Matt Niskanen was participating in the morning skate but was wearing a no-contact jersey. He said that he’ll need more time before playing on Thursday.

Barry Trotz said that Evgeny Kuznetsov has to shoot from the blue paint more. He scored four goals and seven points in last year’s seven-game playoff series against the Penguins last May.

 

The Capitals are three points behind the Penguins and the New Jersey Devils for first place in the Metropolitan Division entering play on Friday.

Capitals Lines for Friday Night’s Game vs. Pittsburgh

Aaron Ness and Nathan Walker are the healthy scratches for tonight’s game.

Interviews:

Shavings

-Dmitry Orlov will play in his 300th NHL game tonight

-Braden Holtby is one win shy of his 200th career NHL win

-The Capitals are 4-3-3 in their past 10 games against the Penguins, including 2-0-2 last season. They dropped the previous meeting 3-2 on October 11 at Capital One Arena.

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By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was seeing T.J. Oshie's hat-trick​ during Game 1 of the Caps' second round playoff series against Pittsburgh in 2016. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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