Vancouver At Washington Preview: Canucks Battle the Capitals In An Early-Afternoon Tilt

canucks
Photo: NHL via Getty Images

The Washington Capitals are cruising into Thanksgiving as the team with the most points around the NHL.  Through 24 games, the Capitals are 16-4-4, and have recorded 36 points.  The Capitals dropped a 4-1 decision on Wednesday night in the Big Apple, so they will look to rebound on Saturday as they face a Canucks team that is looking to get back on track out West.  Puck drop is set for 12:30 PM ET on NBC Sports Washington.

CANUCKS

The Canucks started off hot in October, but have cooled off a bit in November.  The Canucks just started a lengthy 6-game road swing earlier this week, and have gone 1-1 on the trip.

The Canucks last win came versus Nashville on Thursday evening, as they defeated the Predators 6-3.

21-year old Elias Pettersson continues to be the star of this young Canucks team.  He recorded three points against the Predators on Thursday night, adding to his team lead of 28 points on the season.

Brock Boeser continues to light the lamp for the Canucks.  He has recorded 10 goals for the Canucks so far, which leads the team in that category.  He is right behind Pettersson in the points race with 23 points.

Jacob Markstrom has received a bulk of the starts in goal for the Canucks.  In his 15 starts, he has recorded 6 wins, a 2.84 goals against average, and .909 save percentage.

On special teams, the Canucks have a very capable powerplay.  They are 27.7% effective, which is ranked 4th best in the NHL.  Their penalty kill is ranked a respectable 82.9% effective.

CAPITALS

The Capitals laid an egg in New York on Wednesday, but they will look to rebound since the New York Islanders are sneaking up on them in the standings.  Currently, the Islanders trail the Capitals by three points, but the Islanders have four games in hand on the Capitals.

The Capitals are a little short-staffed right now, as Nicklas Backstrom, Carl Hagelin, and Nic Dowd are all on the injury shelf.  In addition to the injuries, Garnet Hathaway will also continue serving his mandatory three-game mandatory suspension on Saturday.

On Friday, the Capitals made some roster moves.  They recalled defenseman Christian Djoos and reassigned Tyler Lewington back to Hershey.  Djoos is not likely to play on Saturday afternoon versus Vancouver.  Braden Holtby is expected to get the start in goal for the Capitals.

John Carlson is continuing to roll for the Capitals.  He has recorded 8 goals and 36 points through 24 games.  He is currently ranked in the top 5 in the NHL scoring race, and he leads all NHL blueliners in points.

The Capitals have a potent powerplay like the Canucks do.  Their powerplay is 24.7% effective, which is ranked 6th best in the NHL.  The Capitals penalty kill is 83.3% effective.

SHAVINGS

By: George Foussekis

About George Foussekis

I am a sports fanatic. I love hockey and football, and I enjoy writing about my two favorite sports. I am a proud Old Dominion University alum.
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