News and Notes from Monday’s Capitals Morning Skate: A Hershey Standout Makes His NHL Debut Tonight, Plus Latest on Andre Burakovsky


Fresh off a thrilling win on Saturday night over the Blue Jackets, the Capitals enjoyed some time off yesterday before hitting the ice Monday morning to get to work on the third game of their season-long five-game homestand. Tonight the Capitals will take on the San Jose Sharks. Washington looks to reverse some misfortune against San Jose and secure their first home win over the Sharks since the 2009-10 season. 


Starting goalie: Philipp Grubauer

Sunday afternoon the Capitals recalled forward Travis Boyd from the Hershey Bears. Boyd has recorded 20 points (three goals, 17 assists) in 23 games with the Bears this season, including eight multi-point games. During Monday’s skate, Boyd was playing at the left wing position on the third with Lars Eller and Brett Connolly. Boyd will make his NHL debut tonight.

Andre Burakovsky, after spending last week doing some on-ice rehab stints with strength and conditioning coach Mark Nemish, was practicing with the team in a normal contact jersey. He didn’t take any line rushes but his presence back on the ice is a big positive as he gets closer to his return to the lineup.

Philipp Grubauer was the first goalie off the ice and will get the start in goal tonight for the Capitals. Grubauer is 0-1-1 all-time against San Jose with a .911 save percentage and a 2.43 goals against average.

Washington has one regulation win in their last 25 meetings with San Jose. Trotz talked to the media after the morning skate about how every team has a “unicorn team”.

Chandler Stephenson left Saturday’s game in the second period with an upper-body injury. He is currently listed as day-to-day.

Burakovsky has been out of the lineup since October with a left thumb injury and was slated to miss six-to-eight weeks. His return is looking like it’s going to be ahead of schedule. He will fully practice with the team tomorrow and the target for him is to play early next week.


  • The Capitals have lost to the Sharks six consecutive times on home ice.
  • The Sharks have shut out the Capitals twice in the last two meetings in DC (5-0 on Oct. 13, 2015 and 3-0 on Nov. 8, 2016).
  • Alex Ovechkin scored his 218th career power play goal on Saturday night against the Columbus Blue Jackets, passing Mike Gartner and Jaromir Jagr for 10th place on the NHL’s all-time power play goals list.
  • In addition, Ovechkin’s goal was his league-leading 21st of the season and tied Mark Recchi (577) for 20th place on the all-time goals list.
  • Since entering the league in 2010-11, Holtby co-leads NHL goaltenders in save percentage at home (.927) and is tied for third in goals against average (2.14) among goalies with at least 100 starts on home ice.
  • Matt Niskanen recorded an assist and co-led the team with four shots on goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday, the second time in a row Niskanen has led or co-led the team in shots on goal.
  • Ovechkin has registered 12 points (7 goals, 5 assists) in 16 career games against the Sharks and has earned five points in his last five games against San Jose.
  • Nicklas Backstrom has earned nine points (1 goal, 8 assists) in 12 career games against the Sharks and has tallied five assists in his last five games against San Jose.



Puck drop tonight is at 7 PM from Capital One Arena. The Capitals are scheduled to practice tomorrow at 11:30 a.m.

By Michael Marzzacco

This entry was posted in Daily Report, Morning Skate, News, Washington Capitals and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to News and Notes from Monday’s Capitals Morning Skate: A Hershey Standout Makes His NHL Debut Tonight, Plus Latest on Andre Burakovsky

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  3. sportsbaron1 says:

    By Tarik El-Bashir December 04, 2017 9:48 PM
    Philipp Grubauer, Capitals
    It wasn’t the most challenging night for the Caps’ backup. But when his number was called, he was ready. Grubi’s best saves came early in the third period on a sequence that saw him turn away Marcus Sorensen with a pad save, then scurry across the crease to thwart Jannik Hansen with a pair of point-blank stops.
    After going winless in his first six starts, Grubauer has now won two in a row. Amazing what a little run support can do for a netminder, huh?
    Agree? Disagree? Let us know what you think in the comments.

    ‘…Amazing what a little run support can do for a netminder, huh?…”

    That is EXACTLY the reason why I’ve always contended that giving goalies Won-Lost records is dumb beyond belief. As with quarterbacks in football, too many other boxes have to be checked under the heading of teammates’ support to justify assigning a goaltender a “win”–only it’s even less logical regarding goalies. I mean, THINK about it: If a netminder does his job PERFECTLY it would still take someone else scoring a goal before he can get credited with the win, n’est’ce pas?

    All I need to know about a goaltender’s effectiveness are his save percentage and his Goals-Against Average. Along with the goalie’s ranking versus his peers regarding the two afore-mentioned categories tell me everything I need to know about him that really matters…

    Santa Monica

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