Capitals Prepare For Brett Connolly And The Panthers; Braden Holtby To Start

The Washington Capitals are in Sunrise, Florida Thursday for a quick one game road trip. They face the Panthers at BB&T Center tonight. Puck drop is just after 7:00 PM. (Full preview is here) The Capitals will return home and host the Vegas Knights on Saturday.


  • Braden Holtby will get the start in goal tonight.
  • Nic Dowd will be a game time decision.

Projected Starting Lines
The Capitals projected lines for tonight currently do not include Nic Dowd. Dowd was declared a “game time decision” following yesterday’s practice, before the team departed for Florida.


Coach Reirden
Reirden met with the media following this mornings skate. He confirmed that Nic Dowd is not going to be in the lineup tonight vs Florida. Though, he will take warmups and go through everything. Could be OK to play if Caps needed him.

Hello, Old Friend
The Capitals will face former Capital Brett Connolly for the first time since Connolly departed the team. Connolly had about 10 Caps over for dinner last night at his house. Connolly said it was good to catch up with all of them. Still “going to be weird” to play against them tonight in Florida.

Connolly said warmups/1st period will be weird tonight vs the Caps, but then it should be a normal game. “Once Willie hits me one time I think that’ll be it. Then it’ll be on so it’s going to be fun.”

Two Man Advantage
Mike Vogel and John Walton provide the latest from Sunrise:

From the Other Bench

The Panthers lines for tonight. Recently acquired Brian Boyle will replace Vincent Trocheck, who is out do to a minor injury.

Brett Connolly talks about facing his old teammates in Florida Panthers podcast.


  • Capitals are 7-1-1 on the road this season. A win tonight would establish the best 10-game road start to a season in franchise history (#ALLCAPS  went 8-2-0 on the road to start the year in 1991-92 & 2015-16).
  • Washington enters this game ranked seventh on the penalty kill (50 for 58, 86.2 percent) and are tied for sixth on the road (32 for 37, 86.5 percent).
  • This season, the Capitals have not lost in regulation when allowing a power play goal (4-0-2) and have not allowed more than two power play goals in a game.
  • Jonas Siegethaler (49:54), Radko Gudas (47:23), Carl Hagelin (46:08) and Nick Jensen (40:36) lead the Capitals in penalty kill time, and all have established full time roles within the calendar year. The Capitals have allowed 42.72 shots per 60 minutes of penalty kill time this season, the third-lowest shots against rate in the NHL.

By Jon Sorensen

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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3 Responses to Capitals Prepare For Brett Connolly And The Panthers; Braden Holtby To Start

  1. Anonymous says:

    Always liked Brett C and wish he had stayed over Garett H and Panik

  2. Day One Caps Fan says:

    “They [the Caps] play the right way and they have pace to their game. We’ve got to play a perfect game tonight.” – Coach Q

    Coach Q indeed! Blackhawks’ GM and senior management should all dismiss themselves for sending Joel Quenneville into the night and replacing him with an amateur. CHI is utterly awful with the new gentleman behind the bench. FLA is good and will be good. Panthers always give the Caps fits, and tonight will be no different.

  3. Pingback: John Carlson Passes Kevin Hatcher For Third in Franchise Scoring for Defensemen, Ties Scott Stevens For Fifth in Goals | NoVa Caps

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