News and Notes from Wednesday’s Capitals Practice at Kettler: Brian Pinho Reports to Caps, Alex Ovechkin is Absent

DZ8g-Y0XkAY5YMW.jpg-largePhoto: @Capitals

The Washington Capitals returned to the ice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Wednesday morning to prepare for their final two games of the regular season. Fresh off a back-to-back road sweep in Pittsburgh and St. Louis and the Metropolitan Division all wrapped up, the Caps look to give some of the young guys on the team some additional playing time while giving a breather to some of the veterans. One young prospect made his Capitals practice debut fresh after signing an entry level contract. Here’s more on what happened today, direct from the rink. 

CAPS LINES

Forwards
Connolly-Kuznetsov-Wilson
Burakovsky-Backstrom-Oshie
Gersich-Eller-DSP
Stephenson-Boyd-Chiasson
Defense
Kempny-Carlson
Orlov-Niskanen
Orpik-Djoos
Extra D-Pair: Jerabek-Bowey

NEWS
The Capitals signed forward Brian Pinho to a two-year entry level contract on Wednesday morning. There was a report on Tuesday that a deal was in the works and it became official today. The deal will be worth an average annual value of $833,750. Pinho just recently completed his college hockey career with Providence College. He was on the ice for practice wearing the number 64. This move gives the Capitals four extra forwards and two extra defensemen on the roster. Pinho and Jakub Vrana were the extra forwards at practice

Alex Ovechkin wasn’t at practice, taking a maintenance day while Jay Beagle remained out with an upper-body injury. Beagle is listed as day-to-day. Taking Ovecechkin’s spot on the top line was Brett Connolly.

Capitals head coach Barry Trotz mentioned that Ovechkin’s maintenance day is related to his tumble into the boards during the first period of Monday’s game. Trotz also said that Ovechkin skated earlier in the day and a decision will be made tomorrow as to whether or not he will play in that night’s game. As for Beagle, Trotz said that he won’t play tomorrow.

Travis Boyd and Madison Bowey both were called up from Hershey yesterday. Boyd was centering the fourth line as Chandler Stephenson moved to the left wing spot while Bowey was an extra defender paired up with Jakub Jerabek.

T.J. Oshie practiced Wednesday after sitting out Monday’s game in St. Louis to reset a lower-body issue. He was back at his familiar spot on the second line with Nicklas Backstrom and Andre Burakovsky.

If the playoffs began today, the Capitals would be facing the New Jersey Devils, who currently sit at the first wild card spot. Washington is 2-0-1 against New Jersey this  season and these two teams will meet on Saturday night at Capital One Arena in the final game of the regular season. Prior to Saturday’s game the Devils will host the Maple Leafs Thursday night at “The Rock”.

Trotz compared the Stanley Cup playoffs to prom night, “You’re invited to the party and at the end of the party you hope you’re the king and queen of the prom.”

No Caps report is complete these days without the goaltending battle for who starts in the playoffs. Trotz said his plan for Braden Holtby and Philipp Grubauer is to split them in the final two regular season games. Trotz didn’t indicate who gets the net Thursday.

PRACTICE VIDEO
Another look at the new guy.

3-on-2 drills with the Hershey connection of Boyd to Stephenson. Stephenson scores.

5-on-5 scrimmage.

In the special teams drills last week, Shane Gersich was practicing on the second penalty kill unit. Today, he was on the top PK unit.

Welcome back, Madison Bowey!

Even though Vrana was an extra forward, it didn’t keep him from smiling.

Andre Burakovsky and Tom Wilson: the best bromance in all of hockey.

At the tail end of practice all four young forwards (Stephenson, Gersich, Vrana, and Boyd) each took part in a shooting and rebounding drill with a small goal net in the middle. We have more scenes from this drill here.

SHAVINGS

  • The Capitals have had 11 different players with double-digit goals scored both this season and last season. In 2016-17, the Capitals’ 11 double-digit goal scorers accumulated a total of 220 goals, 84.3 percent of the Capitals’ total goals. This season, the Capitals 11 double-digit goal scorers have accumulated 205 goals, 82.7 percent of the Capitals total goals.
  • Of the Capitals 11 double-digit goal scorers, seven have scored more this season than they did last season (Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Lars Eller, John Carlson, Tom Wilson, Jakub Vrana, Dmitry Orlov).
  • Andre Burakovsky is one goal shy of tying his 2016-17 output of 12 goals, and if he scores a goal within the Caps next two games, he’ll tie his 2016-17 total in eight-fewer games.

CAPS TODAY

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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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4 Responses to News and Notes from Wednesday’s Capitals Practice at Kettler: Brian Pinho Reports to Caps, Alex Ovechkin is Absent

  1. Pingback: Young Capitals Forwards Get Crash Course on Shooting and Rebounding with Two Nets (Video) | NoVa Caps

  2. Pingback: Capitals Return Home to Host Predators | NoVa Caps

  3. Pingback: News and Notes’ From Capitals’ Morning Skate on Thursday: Attacking the Preds | NoVa Caps

  4. Pingback: Washington Capitals Prospect Review and Forecast: Brian Pinho | NoVa Caps

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