News and Notes from Tuesday’s Capitals Optional Skate at Kettler: An Extra Forward and Some Confusion on Who Will Start in Goal


The Washington Capitals suffered a 5-1 loss on Monday night in Columbus to the new-look Blue Jackets. The only good thing to come out of the game was the lone goal that was scored by Alex Ovechkin, as he continues his milestone chase. The Caps will try again on Tuesday night when they welcome Erik Karlsson and the Ottawa Senators to Capital One Arena. Prior to the game, the team held an optional skate Tuesday morning at Kettler Capitals Iceplex

Travis Boyd, Jakub Vrank, Alex Chiasson, Andre Burakovsky, Chandler Stephenson

Madison Bowey, Christian Djoos, Jakub Jerabek, Brooks Orpik

Philipp Grubauer, Braden Holtby

The Capitals recalled Travis Boyd from the Hershey Bears this morning. With 44 points (15 goals, 29 assists) Boyd has earned this opportunity. You might be wondering why Boyd was brought up with nobody getting hurt in last night’s game. The reasoning behind it is the NHL roster limit is lifted after the trade deadline. Boyd was marked present at the optional skate.

“It’s exciting news. I’m just really happy to be back up here. Hope I get a chance to play again, hope I can help the team. And if I do play, hope I can play well and help the team any way I can,” said Boyd.

When Boyd was asked by NBC Sports Washington’s Tarik El-Bashir on whether he expected this recall, Boyd answered, “No I was just kind of going about my business down in Hershey. I was starting to play really well down there, we’ve been winning some games. I got a call late last night and obviously I’ll take the switch of plans to come up here.”

Things got confusing at the tail end of the optional as to who is starting in goal. Ideally, Trotz would give Philipp Grubauer the start the day after Braden Holtby gets the start in the first leg of a back-to-back. Grubauer was the first goalie off the ice BUT Holtby was taking shots from the defense. Usually both of those things going down in a morning skate determines who gets the start.

Holtby allowed four goals in the opening period on 16 shots in last night’s game in Columbus. Grubauer came on in relief for the final two periods and stopped all 18 shots he faced. We’ll know who’s in when Trotz talks to the media at 5 p.m.

This is one of the rather interesting scratch’s skates you’ll see. This almost looked like a Hershey 2-on-2 scrimmage with three of these folks once teammates in Chocolatetown (sorry Chiasson). Travis Boyd and Alex Chiasson went up against Christian Djoos and Madison Bowey. Holtby was in net.

Jakub Jerabek, who was acquired from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a 2019 fifth round pick last Wednesday, told reporters that he will make his Caps debut tonight.

Travis Boyd partaking in 2-on-1’s.

Boyd one-timers.

Jakub Vrana working on his shot. He’s back in tonight!




  • The Capitals are 46-36-5-5 all-time against the Senators and have won four-straight games against Ottawa at Capital One Arena.
  • Alex Ovechin played in his 984th Capitals/NHl game on Tuesday night against the Blue Jackets, passing Calle Johansson (983) for most games played in franchise history.
  • Ovechkin just needs hat trick for his 600th career goal. His 500th goal came in Jan. 2016 against the Senators.
  • In his last 19 appearances, dating back to his 36-save effort against the Calgary Flames on Oct. 29, Philipp Grubauer is 7-5-2 with a 1.98 goals against average and a .936 save percentage, which is the second-lowest goals against average and the highest save percentage among goaltenders with at least 15 appearances during that time frame.
  • Washington has won seven of their last eight games against Ottawa and has earned a point in nine consecutive games (8-0-1).
  • The Capitals have won four straight games against the Senators at Capital One Arena.
  • Ovechkin has earned 43 points (26 goals, 17 assists) in 41 career games against Ottawa.
  • Nicklas Backstrom has registered 29 points (10 goals, 19 assists) in 35 career games against the Senators.


By Michael Marzzacco

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1 Response to News and Notes from Tuesday’s Capitals Optional Skate at Kettler: An Extra Forward and Some Confusion on Who Will Start in Goal

  1. Pingback: Travis Boyd: “I’m Just Really Happy to be Back Up Here” | NoVa Caps

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