Lineup and Scenes from the 1st Capitals Eastern Conference Final Practice in 20 Years

Screen Shot 2018-05-09 at 2.01.26 PMPhoto: @Capitals

It’s unfamiliar territory in 2018. Usually around this time of year at Kettler Capitals Iceplex players are cleaning out their lockers and conducting their final interviews with the media. Not this year! On Wednesday morning the team began preparations for their Eastern Conference Final matchup against the Tampa Bay Lightning just two days after slaying the Penguins and ending Washington D.C.’s second round playoff drought once and for all. Here’s what happened direct from the rink.


Chiasson-Beagle-Smith Pelly

Andre Burakovsky (upper-body) practiced in a light blue non-contact jersey while Nicklas Backstrom (upper-body) did off-ice workouts and didn’t skate with the team. Trotz said after practice that both players are day-to-day and will travel with the team to Tampa Bay.

The top-six forward lines as well as the defensive pairs remain unchanged from Game 6. On the bottom-six, Chandler Stephenson is now the left wing on the third line while Brett Connolly moves to the right side. Devante Smith-Pelly moved down to the fourth line on the right side while Alex Chiasson moved to the left wing spot.

Andre Burakovsky looked good at his first practice with his teammates since injuring his upper-body in Game 2 of the first round.

Tom Wilson was back in a red top-six forward jersey on the top line with Evgeny Kuznetsov and Alex Ovechkin. His three game suspension is over!

Burakovsky partook in the individual drills on the Arlington rink.

Great top shelf shot from DSP.

The hero from Game 6: Evgeny Kuznetsov!

Full rink 5-on-5.

The top play from special teams work, this dive from Dmitry Orlov.

After the team drills ended, the Caps huddled up at center ice to a rousing ovation from the packed crowd.

Kuznetsov to T.J. Oshie in forward work.

Finally, we would like to salute Travis Boyd for being Oshie’s placeholder during practices and morning skates in the first round and for stepping up at center as Nicklas Backstrom continues his recovery from his upper-body injury.

By Michael Marzzacco

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