Capitals Morning Skate News Roundup: Burakovsky and Stephenson Draw Back In

The Washington Capitals held a morning skate at MedStar Capitals Iceplex on Friday morning prior to their game against the Buffalo Sabres tonight. Action from Capital One Arena can be seen on NBC Sports Washington or NBCSN for those outside of the DMV. Here are all of the news from today’s morning skate: 

Forwards Andre Burakovsky, who has sat the past four games, and Chandler Stephenson, who has sat three of the last four, will return to the lineup against the Sabres after the Capitals missed some speed in their 2-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday, according to Todd Reirden. Forwards Travis Boyd and Dmitrij Jaskin will draw out of the lineup in favor of Stephenson and Burakovsky.

Goaltender Braden Holtby will be between the pipes tonight, meaning that Pheonix Copley will get the net tomorrow night when the Capitals visit the Ottawa Senators.

Capitals Lines vs. Sabres

The Sabres did not hold a morning skate.


-In the month of December, the Capitals have a 53.75 shot attempt percentage at 5-on-5 (380 shots for-327 against), the fifth-best percentage in the NHL in that span. The 327 allowed shot attempts at 5-on-5 is the second lowest in the NHL (Carolina Hurricanes: 296 in seven games)

-The Capitals hold a 7-2-1 record this season in sets of back-to-back games, including 5-0-0 in the first game for the fourth best points percentage in the league; The Calgary Flames (4-0-0) are the only other undefeated team in the first game of a back-to-back

-The Capitals are 23-7-4 in their past 34 games against the Sabres

-Captain Alex Ovechkin can become the first player to reach the 30-goal mark this season; should he score tonight, it’ll be the fifth time in his career Ovechkin reached the mark before any player, all of which occurred in the last seven seasons

-Ovechkin is one goal shy of joining Gartner (15) as the only players in NHL history to begin their career with 14 consecutive 30-goal seasons, and one of three players in NHL history with 14 seasons with at least 30 goals (Gartner: 17; Jaromir Jagr: 15 seasons)

-Defenseman John Carlson logged 29:02 of ice time on Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the third-most TOI he’s recorded in a single game this season (Oct. 19 vs. Florida Panthers: 29:28; Oct. 15: 29:11) and the second straight game he’s logged at least 29 minutes of play

-Ovechkin has earned 47 points (31 goals) in 46 career games against the Sabres and has earned 15 points (11 goals) in his last 14 games against Buffalo

-The Capitals are 12-3-0 in their last 15 games and have recorded at least three goals in 14 of those 15 games

Capitals Today


By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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