Capitals To Rest Nicklas Backstrom, John Carlson, and T.J. Oshie In Season Finale, Start Pheonix Copley In Net

SportsnetPhoto: Sportsnet

The Washington Capitals will rest center Nicklas Backstrom, forward T.J. Oshie, and defenseman John Carlson for Game 1 of the First Round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs in their regular season finale against the New York Islanders at Capital One Arena on Saturday night (7 PM ET, NBC Sports Washington). In addition, goaltender Pheonix Copley will make his second start in three games. More news from the Capitals’ morning skate prior to Game 82 can be found below:

Copley will play the entire game tonight, according to head coach Todd Reirden.

Forward Nathan Walker, who will be a healthy scratch against the Islanders, will be sent back to the AHL’s Hershey Bears for the Calder Cup Playoffs after the game tonight. He was recalled by the Capitals on Friday.

Captain Alex Ovechkin will not be a scratch tonight because Reirden felt he already got his rest when he was suspended in a 4-3 win over the Calgary Flames on February 1 for skipping the 2019 NHL All-Star Weekend in San Jose. He stated that the race for the Maurice Rocket Richard Trophy was not a factor. Ovechkin leads Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl by two goals for the league-lead.

Capitals’ Lines vs. Islanders

Forward Dmitrij Jaskin, who last played in a 5-2 loss to the Anaheim Ducks on February 17, and defenseman Jonas Seigenthaler, who last played in a 3-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks on February 5, will draw back into the lineup tonight. The Capitals made lineup changes for their game against the Islanders with Carlson, Backstrom, and Oshie out.

Islanders News

Center Valtteri Filppula, who has missed the past eight games with an upper-body injury, will return for the Islanders tonight. Defenseman Johnny Boychuk, who was rested in the Islanders’ 2-1 shootout win over the Florida Panthers on Thursday, will draw back into the lineup. Goaltender Robin Lehner will likely start for the Islanders, who will try to clinch the Jennings Trophy for the fewest goals allowed tonight. They have allowed a league-low 196 goals this season, six fewer than the Dallas Stars, who are second in league defense.

The Islanders can secure the second spot in the Metropolitan Division with a point against the Capitals or if the Pittsburgh Penguins fall to the New York Rangers in any fashion at home tonight. They can play the Penguins or the Carolina Hurricanes in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

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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1 Response to Capitals To Rest Nicklas Backstrom, John Carlson, and T.J. Oshie In Season Finale, Start Pheonix Copley In Net

  1. Anonymous says:

    A disappointing effort by the Capitals tonight against the Islanders. So what the Caps rested three stars! New York does not have that many players who can put the puck in the net. This team does not play 60 minutes of hockey night in night out. So now it begins the playoffs! Win four games and your in/onto the next round of the playoffs.

    Like

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