Capitals at Senators – Post Game Breakdown: Caps Finish Strong Before Holiday Break

Photo by Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

Both teams were playing the second game of a back-to-back set (Ottawa was in New Jersey Friday night, the Capitals hosted Buffalo), but it would make little difference, as this one was #ALLCAPS. The win raised the Capitals record to 22-10-3 (47 points) on the season. The NHL will now break for the holidays. The Capitals return to action on Thursday when they host the Carolina Hurricanes at Capital One Arena. Puck drop is set for 7:00 PM. 


The Capitals struck first with a tally from Brett Connolly early in the opening frame. Matt Niskanen would knock home a nice pass from Ovechkin for the 2-0 lead at the first intermission. Jakub Vrana and Michal Kempny added tallies early in the middle frame for a 4-0 lead at the second intermission. The Capitals would slam the door shut in the final frame for the 4-0 win, and Pheonix Copley’s first career shutout.

Tyler Lewington made his NHL debut and was paired with Jonas Siegenthaler, giving the Capitals third defensive pair a total of nine NHL games experiences.


Scratches: Madison Bowey, Devante Smith-Pelli and Dmitrij Jaskin were the healthy scratches.

The Senators out-attempted the Capitals 22-21 but the Capitals led 14-13 in shots on goal (SOG) and led in the game 2-0 after the first 20 minutes. The Senators out-attempted the Caps 22-21 and led 12-10 in SOG in the middle frame. The Capitals played a defensive game in the final frame, and as a result, Ottawa out-attempted Washington 18-7 and led 10-9 in SOG for the final frame.



Pheonix Copley was stellar, pitching his first career NHL shutout. Copley stopped 35 of 35. McKenna stopped 29 of 33 for an .873 save percentage.

The Senators entered the game with the league’s 12th best power play (22.0%) and the league’s 30th ranked penalty kill (73.8%). The Capitals entered the game with the leagues 6th ranked power play (25.0%) and the leagues 27th ranked penalty kill (75.2%).

For the game, the Capitals were 0 for 3 and the Senators 0 for 2 on the man advantage. It would been nice to see the power play revive itself against the league’s 30th ranked penalty kill, but it wasn’t to be. Work still needs to be done in this area.

The Senators won the battle at the dot 64-36%. Brett Connolly was 0 for 1, Nicklas Backstrom was 6 for 15, Lars Eller was 7 for 15, Nic Dowd was 3 for 12 and Evgeny Kuznetsov was 2 for 7. The NHL’s faceoff stat summary for the game can be found here.

Alex Ovechkin and Tom Wilson led the Caps with six shots.

  • Brett Connolly has 21 points (8g, 13a) in 35 games, including eight points (4g, 4a) in his last 10 games and is six points from setting a new career high (2017-18 with Washington).
  • Tyler Lewington, drafted in the seventh round (204th overall) in 2013, became the second Caps defenseman draft pick selected in the seventh round since 2012 (Christian Djoos: 2012 Draft, seventh round, 195th overall).
  • Copley is the 28th different goaltender in franchise history to record a shutout.
  • Dmitry Orlov played in his 400th career game.

Game Stats:

Happy holidays everyone!

By Jon Sorensen

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Copley’s First Shutout! #ALLCAPS

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About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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2 Responses to Capitals at Senators – Post Game Breakdown: Caps Finish Strong Before Holiday Break

  1. Pingback: Aging Like a Fine Wine: Alex Ovechki’s Fantastic Start to the 2018-19 Season More Spectacular Than Meets the Eye | NoVa Caps

  2. Pingback: Aging Like a Fine Wine: Alex Ovechkin’s Fantastic Start to the 2018-19 Season More Spectacular Than Meets the Eye | NoVa Caps

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