Nicklas Backstrom Out, Garnet Hathaway Returns, Braden Holtby In Goal: Capitals-Lightning Pregame News

With a 5:07 PM start to their traditional “Black Friday” game this evening, the Capitals did not hold a game day morning skate this morning. Capitals bench boss Todd Reirden met with the media at 2:45 PM this afternoon to answer questions and provide a pregame update. Here is the latest from Capital One Arena ahead of tonight’s Lightning-Capitals clash.


Braden Holtby will get the start in goal this evening. Ilya Samsonov will get the start tomorrow night in Detroit. Garnet Hathaway is back in the lineup after serving his three-game suspension for spitting on Derek Gudbranson on 11/18.

Nicklas Backstrom won’t play today, but will skate before tomorrow’s game in Detroit, and the team will then re-evaluate. He has not been ruled out for the Red Wings game.

Carl Hagelin remains on injured reserve and will be able to return in San Jose on Tuesday.

Here is the Capitals lineup for tonight:

Tampa Bay
The lightning held a game day org skate early this morning at Capital One Area. Here are their lines for tonight.


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  • With an assist on Wednesday against the Florida Panthers, Jakub Vrana recorded his 100th career point (51g, 49a).
    Vrana became the 23rd Capitals draft pick at the forward position to record 100 points with the franchise and the 15th player from his 2014 NHL Draft class to reach the mark, despite being 19th in his draft class in games played.
  • This season, Vrana’s 11 goals rank second on the Capitals (Alex Ovechkin: 15).
  • All 11 of Vrana’s goals have come at even strength, which is tied for the fourth-most in the NHL. Since 2018-19, Vrana’s 1.42 goals per 60 minutes of five-on-five play leads the Capitals and is tied for fourth in the NHL among players with at least 90 games played.

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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1 Response to Nicklas Backstrom Out, Garnet Hathaway Returns, Braden Holtby In Goal: Capitals-Lightning Pregame News

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