The Defending Champions Return To Pittsburgh: Capitals @ Penguins

Capitals @ Penguins game graphic

After a memorable Banner Raising celebration and a huge 7-0 victory over the visiting Boston Bruins, the Capitals hit the road for Pittsburgh.  The last time the Capitals visited Pittsburgh, the Capitals clinched a spot to go to the Eastern Conference Final, as they defeated the Penguins 2-1 in Game 6 of the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs.  Puck drop is at 7 PM on NBC Sports Washington.

PITTSBURGH PENGUINS

It was a bitter ending for the Penguins in the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs.  While the Penguins became used to defeating the Capitals in postseason play, the script flipped on the Penguins a season ago.

The Penguins are experienced and still very dangerous.  They are still among the favorites to win the Metropolitan Division, in addition to being a legitimate Stanley Cup contender.

Evgeni Malkin was the Penguins leading scorer last season.  He recorded 42 goals and 98 points, leading the Penguins in both respective categories.  Phil Kessel is back for the Penguins too, as he recorded 92 points a season ago.

The Penguins are a little banged up coming into this game.  Goaltender Tristan Jarry is day-to-day.  Defenseman Brian Dumoulin will be a game-time decision for the matchup versus the Capitals.  It is expected that Matt Murray will get the nod in goal for the Penguins.

WASHINGTON CAPITALS

The Capitals came out on fire and never looked back against the Boston Bruins on Banner Raising Night.  T.J. Oshie scored 24 seconds into the game, and Evgeny Kuznetsov scored over minute later, so the game was 2-0 before anyone could blink.

The Capitals displayed a fast-paced game, and the powerplay clicked all game long against Boston.  The Capitals were 4/6 with the man advantage.

The Capitals received contributions from all over the lineup, especially from their top lines.  Nicklas Backstrom recorded 3 assists in the game, while Evgeny Kuznetsov recorded 2 goals in the game.  Braden Holtby was rock solid in net, and made 25 saves.

While the Capitals celebrated their Stanley Cup win in style on Banner Raising night, there was a minor area of concern in the game against Boston.  The Capitals did not perform very well in the faceoff circle against Boston.  The Capitals won just 32% of their draws in the faceoff dot.

The Capitals will likely not make many tweaks to their lineup against Pittsburgh.  It is very possible that Dmitrij Jaskin could slot in to the lineup after being claimed by the Capitals on waivers a few days ago.  In addition to Jaskin possibly playing, forward Jayson Megna cleared waivers and will likely be sent to Hershey soon.

SKATE SHAVINGS

A LOOK BACK IN TIME

Here is a look at Evgeny Kuznetsov’s game winning goal from Game 6.

By: George Foussekis

About George Foussekis

I am a sports fanatic. I love hockey and football, and I enjoy writing about my two favorite sports. I am a proud Old Dominion University alum.
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One Response to The Defending Champions Return To Pittsburgh: Capitals @ Penguins

  1. Pingback: Tom Wilson Likely To Appeal Suspension According To Todd Reirden | NoVa Caps

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