Ilya Samsonov Starts In Goal, New Lines: News From Capitals Morning Skate

The Washington Capitals were back to work Sunday morning for gameday morning skate at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. The Capitals and Flyers kick-off  their three-game set tonight with puck drop set for just after 7:00 PM. Here’s the latest from the City of Brotherly Love.

The Capitals face the Philadelphia Flyers tonight for the second time this season (0-1-0). The Capitals have won three of their last four road games against Philadelphia (3-1-0), dating back to March 6, 2019. (Series preview here.)


Daniel Sprong will replace Tom Wilson in the lineup.

Ilya Samsonov will get the start in goal.


Head coach Peter Laviolette said he did not know if Tom Wilson will appeal his suspension. Alex Ovechkin Ovechkin described the suspension as “kind of a joke”.


Alex Ovechkin

T.J. Oshie and Lars Eller

Peter Laviolette


  • The Capitals’ penalty kill went two-for-two against Boston’s 11th-ranked power play (25.0 percent) on Friday, marking the third-straight game in which the Capitals did not give up a power play goal.
  • Since. Feb. 25, Washington has killed off 13 of 14 (92.9 percent) opposing power play opportunities, which is tied for the third-highest penalty kill percentage in the NHL during that span.
  • Since Feb. 25, the Capitals have allowed 11 total shots on goal while on the penalty kill, per Natural Stat Trick. That is tied for the third-fewest shorthanded shots against in the NHL during that span.
  • Additionally, the Capitals rank first in the NHL in shorthanded faceoff win percentage (66.7 percent) dating back to Feb. 25. Nic Dowd leads the Capitals and the NHL in shorthanded faceoff win percentage in that span, having won 11 of 14 (78.6 percent) shorthanded faceoffs.


  • Nicklas Backstrom became the first player in franchise history to reach the 700-assist last mark against the Boston Bruins.
  • Backstrom became the second fastest active player (Sidney Crosby, PIT: 856 games) and the 23rd fastest player in NHL history to reach the 700-assist mark in his 979th career game.
  • In addition, Backstrom became the 25th player in NHL history to reach the milestone before his 1,000th NHL game. Of the 24 players to accomplish this feat, 23 are in the Hockey Hall of Fame.
  • Among the top-five assist leaders in franchise history, three are currently on the Capitals (Backstrom; Alex Ovechkin: 582a, 2nd; John Carlson: 387a, 5th). Excluding the Vegas Golden Knights, only the Columbus Blue Jackets, the San Jose Sharks and the Winnipeg Jets have three active franchise assists leaders on their roster.
  • Washington is the oldest franchise among this list and has the highest combined assist total among their three active players.

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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5 Responses to Ilya Samsonov Starts In Goal, New Lines: News From Capitals Morning Skate

  1. Novafyre says:

    Has any Cox Fairfax user had trouble watching the game remotely? NBCSW website (on a computer) tells me “We’re Sorry It looks like your TV subscription does not provide access to this service. Please contact your TV provider for more information,” the My Team Sports phone app says “Sorry. This team’s live video is not included with your cable package” and the NBC Sports phone app says “Authorization Error. We’re sorry, this programming is currently not available through your provider.”

    Worked fine all season until Friday. Called NBC Sports and Cox and neither could solve the problem. Cox assured me NBCSW is in my package and I’m paid up, no reason to be denied. Walton is a nice guy and good announcer but I still prefer to watch the Caps on TV even when on the road.

  2. Anonymous says:

    If I’m the Caps I have everyone wear number 43 for pregame warmups for the rest of the season

  3. Diane Doyle says:

    It was probably a wise idea to use Sammy. No point in burning out Vanacek who we shouldn’t expect to shoulder a vintage Martin Brodeur-esque load given he’s generally been in a 1A/1B situation for most of his past career.

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