Photo: Brad Mills- USA Today Sports
After a blowout, 6-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Friday, the Washington Capitals are looking to keep the momentum at Capital One Arena going as they host the Calgary Flames on Sunday, on which they will honor the Washington Nationals’ World Series win before the game. Action from D.C. begins at 7:00 P.M. ET on NHL Network and NBC Sports Washington.
On Thursday, Calgary beat the Nashville Predators 6-5 in overtime at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. The Flames have a Saturday night game in Columbus against the Blue Jackets before wrapping up their five-game road trip with a stop in the nation’s capital on Sunday. Calgary has gone 7-6-2 and sits fifth in the Pacific Division and 16th overall with 16 points; the Flames have a 3-5-1 record on the road.
Forward Matthew Tkachuk is the team leader in points (13). He picked up three points (two goals) in the Halloween victory over the Predators. Center Elias Lindholm has picked up nine goals, which include four in his last five games. Forward Johnny Gaudreau leads the team with 10 assists.
Goaltender Cam Talbot has not started since the 5-3 loss to the Capitals on October 22. He has recorded a .908 Save Percentage and Goals-Against Average of 2.46 in four games played. David Rittich helped lead the Flames to a win on Thursday by making 31 saves, allowing five goals, and posting an .861 Save Percentage. On the season, he holds a .906 Save Percentage, 3.02 Goals-Against Average, and has recorded one shutout.
Calgary ranks 21st in the league with a 16.7% efficient power play. Their penalty kill is better, ranking fourth overall with an 87.5% efficiency. Lindholm leads the team with four power play goals, while Milan Lucic and Tkachuk have the most penalty minutes on the Flames, with 26 and 20, respectively.
Washington continues to lead the Metropolitan Division and league with 23 points. They have gone 10-2-3 thus far and 3-1-2 at home. The Capitals will wrap up their season series with Calgary on Sunday night.
Defenseman John Carlson did not pick up any points during Friday’s win but remains the team leader with 23 points and 16 assists; the team’s newest alternate captain did score two goals during the Capitals’ last meeting with the Flames. Captain Alex Ovechkin has recorded 11 goals, one of which came in the October 22 matchup with an additional assist. Forward Brendan Leipsic improved to five points with a goal and an assist in the victory over the Sabres. His goal marked the first of the season and as a Capital.
Forward Nic Dowd is still listed day-to-day after sustaining a lower-body injury in Tuesday’s win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. Dowd and forward Richard Panik, who is on long-term injured reserve (upper body), were on the ice before practice on Saturday morning.
Goaltender Braden Holtby made 29 saves, allowed one goal, and posted a .967 Save Percentage on Friday. He has gone 6-1-3 with a Goals-Against Average of 3.30 and a Save Percentage of .895 on the season.
With a 25% efficiency, the Capitals round out the Top 5 on the power play. They are also fifth in the NHL with an 85.7% efficient penalty kill. Ovechkin and forward T.J. Oshie lead with four power play goals, respectively. Defenseman Radko Gudas has picked up 19 penalty minutes.
By Della Young