Washington Capitals Third Quarter Report: 2021-22 Season

With the Washington Capitals having played 60 games of their 2021-2022 regular season schedule, it’s time to take our regular quarterly assessment of the team for the third quarter of the season. 

Links to Past Quarterly Recaps

2017-18:  1st Quarter   2nd Quarter   3rd Quarter  4th Quarter
2018-19: 1st Quarter   2nd Quarter   3rd Quarter  4th Quarter
2019-20: 1st Quarter   2nd Quarter   3rd Quarter  4th Quarter
2020-21: 1st Trimester  2nd Trimester 3rd Trimester
2021-22: 1st Quarter   2nd Quarter

 2021-22 Season – Third Quarter

After 60 games, the Capitals have a 32-18-10 record and 74 points, good enough for fourth place in the Metropolitan Division and eighth place in the Eastern Conference. Their points percentage of .617 ranks fourth in their division and eighth in the Eastern Conference.

Screen cap: NHL

Inside the Numbers (Wins and Losses)

Of the Capitals’ 32 wins, 26 were in regulation, four were won in overtime that did not proceed to a shootout, and two were won in the shootout. The Capitals have lost 18 games in regulation and ten games in overtime, with eight of those overtime losses ending before a shootout.

The Capitals were 5-0-3 in October, 9-4-2 in November, 6-2-2 in December, 4-6-2 in January, 4-6-0 in February, and 4-0-1 so far in March. They have gone 14-11-5 at home and 18-7-5 on the road.


The Capitals have scored 195 goals, which is 16 more than the NHL average of 179 goals, and have given up 167 goals, which is twelve goals better than the league average. They have a Goal Differential of +28.

The “Goals For” and “Goals Against” totals per NHL.com, are listed as 197 and 169, given that teams are credited with an extra “Goal For” for shootout wins and debited with an extra “Goal Against” for shootout losses. In the case of the Capitals, they won two shootouts and lost two shootouts so their “Goals For” and “Goals Against” totals reflect this.

Team Leaders


  • Alex Ovechkin – 36
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov – 19
  • Tom Wilson — 18
  • Conor Sheary — 15


  • John Carlson — 39
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov — 38
  • Alex Ovechkin — 35
  • Tom Wilson – 22


  • Alex Ovechkin – 71 (36 goals, 35 assists)
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov – 57 (19 goals, 38 assists)
  • John Carlson – 49 (ten goals; 39 assists)
  • Tom Wilson – 40 (18 goals, 22 assists)

General Statistical Analysis


  • Of the 195 goals scored the Capitals, 154 were at even-strength, with 129 at 5-on-5, 34 were on the power play, seven were scored shorthanded, and 16 goals scored on an empty-net.
  • The Capitals have averaged 3.25 Goals Per Game, which ranks eleventh in the league, while their Goals-Against Average is 2.78, which is eighth lowest.
  • The Capitals’ 195 goals is 16 more than the league average of 179.
  • The Capitals have scored more than four goals on 13 different occasions, winning them all. They have given up more than four goals 10 times, winning one, losing seven times in regulation and losing twice in Overtime.
  • Their record in one goal games is 9-8-10.
  • Their record in games where the goal difference is 3 goals or more is 12-6-0.

Possession Metrics

  • Washington’s Corsi For Percentage (CF%) at 5-on-5 is 50.34%, which ranks 15th in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Fenwick For Percentage (FF%) at 5-on-5 is 51.07%, which ranks 14th in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Shots For Percentage (SF%) at 5-on-5 is 51.05%, which ranks 12th in the league.
  • The Capitals Goals For Percentage (GF%) at 5-on-5 is 54.66%, which ranks eighth in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Expected Goals For Percentage (xFG%) at 5-on-5 is 50.34%, which ranks 16th in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Scoring Chances For Percentage (SCF%) at 5-on-5 is 50.47%, which ranks 14th in the league. They had 1345 scoring chances and 1320 scoring chances against.
  • Washington’s Percentage Driven Outcome (PDO) at 5-on-5 is 1.012 based on a shot percentage of 8.87% and a save percentage of 92.26.

The full set of team advanced statistics from Natural Stat Trick through March 12, can be found here.

Natural Stat Trick lists a breakout of Capitals’ players’ offensive statistics through March 12 at 5-on-5. It shows goals, primary, and secondary assists, followed by a breakout of advanced statistics.

Expected Goals Minus Actual Goals

Additional Statistics

  • The Capitals have taken 1,873 shots on goal and given up 1,750 shots on goal. At 5-on-5, they have taken 1455 shots, which ranks 14th and opponents have taken 1395 shots, which ranks 12th. Their overall Shooting Percentage is 10.4% which ranks tenth.
  • The Capitals have taken an average of 31.2 shots per game and have given up an average of 29.2 shots
  • The Capitals have won 47.2% of their faceoffs, which ranks 29th in the league.


Vitek Vanecek has played in 29 games, starting 27, and had 693 saves on 755 shots for a save percentage of .918, which is better than his career save percentage of .912. He’s had just one NHL season prior to this season. He has a 14-7-5  record for the year. Vanecek has authored three shutouts this season.

Save Percentage (5-on-5)

Ilya Samsonov has played in 33 games, starting 29 and has a 17-9-4 record for the year, with a save percentage of .901. That is below his career save percentage of .905 but he only has two seasons of NHL experience, besides this season. Samsonov has authored three shutouts this season.

High-Danger Save Percentage (5-on-5)

The team’s overall save percentage is .909 which is better than the league average percentage of .903. The statistics includes four games where Zach Fucale was in goal and two games with Pheonix Copley in goal.

Special Teams

For the season, the Capitals have scored 34 power play goals on 183 power play opportunities for a conversion rate of 18.58%, which currently ranks 23th in the league and is worse than the league average of 20.81%.

The Capitals Penalty Kill percentage is 80.61%, as they have killed 133 penalties out of 165 opportunities, which ranks 12th out of 32 teams. Their penalty minutes per game is 7.4 which is fourth lowest in the league. Opponents have earned 8.2 penalty minutes per game which ranks 24th.

The Capitals have scored five shorthanded goals and given up five shorthanded goals this year.

Major Milestones

The third quarter saw players achieve several major milestones:

The Road Ahead

The Capitals return home to host the New York Islanders on March 15. Then, they go on the road and play a back-to-back set of games against the Columbus Blue Jackets on March 17 and the Carolina Hurricanes on March 18. After that, they return home to play the Dallas Stars on March 20 and the St. Louis Blues on March 22.

Statistics obtained from NHL.com, Hockey Reference, Puck Base, and Quanthockey. Standings and statistics complete through games of March 12.

By Diane Doyle

Related Reading
Washington Capitals First Quarter Review: 2021-22 Season
Washington Capitals Second Quarter Review: 2021-22 Season
Declining Trends In The Washington Capitals’ Possession Metrics: A Cautionary Tale
Performance Review: Vitek Vanecek And Ilya Samsonov After The First 52 Games Of The 2021-22 Season

About Diane Doyle

Been a Caps fan since November 1975 when attending a game with my then boyfriend and now husband.
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1 Response to Washington Capitals Third Quarter Report: 2021-22 Season

  1. novafyre says:

    “for a save percentage of .918, which is his career save percentage of .912. ”

    Maybe you meant “which is above his career percentage”?

    “Vanecek has authored three shutout this season.” Maybe “shutouts” plural?

    While I enjoy Ovi continuing his climb up the charts, I am disappointed that there is such a big gap between him and the rest of the team. Also that more Caps players aren’t in double digits.

    It also showed that my perception watching the games is worse than the stats are showing. But as I have questioned before, how do those stats compare over time? What are the differences say between quarter 1 when we were playing loads of subs and quarter 3 with more vets in play? Have our numbers gone up, gone down, stayed the same?

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