Marcus Johansson Arrives, T.J. Oshie Takes Line Rushes, Vitek Vanecek To Start Tonight Against The Blues: News From Capitals Tuesday Morning Skate

The Washington Capitals held their gameday morning skate Tuesday morning at MedStar Capitals Iceplex. As expected, Marcus Johansson, acquired in a trade with the Seattle Kraken on Monday, made his first (re)appearance.

Johansson skated on the top line with Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov. T.J. Oshie returned to take line rushes, but also put in extra work after the morning skate. Head Coach Peter Laviolette said after practice that he was unsure of Oshie’s status for tonight.

The lines at morning skate:

Johansson also practiced as part of the second power play unit this morning.

Laviolette confirmed after the morning skate that Vitek Vanecek will get the start tonight against the Blues.

Johan Larsson, acquired by Washington from Arizona yesterday, is expected to arrive later this afternoon. He’s working his way back from sports hernia surgery. GM Brian MacLellan said yesterday he’s probably a week or so away from playing.

Hello MoJo

Newly acquired forward, Marcus Johansson, will make his debut for the Caps this season after Washington reacquired the former first-round pick yesterday from the Seattle Kraken.

The 6’1″, 203-pound forward played seven seasons with Washington from 2010-17, compiling 290 points (102g, 188a) in 501 games. Johansson is one of 31 players to play 500 games for the Capitals.

Go Johnny Go

Tonight marks Caps defenseman’s John Carlson bobblehead night, courtesy of Capital One. Fans will be able to take home a one-of-a-kind bobblehead featuring Carlson’s iconic navy blue W jersey, unique for the 2021-21 season. Carlson is coming into tonight’s game, having recorded 12 points (1g, 11a) in his last 10 and ranks third on the team with 52 points (11g, 41a) and tied for first in assists (41a).

This season marks Carlson’s fifth career 50-point season, becoming the second defenseman in franchise history with five 50-point campaigns, only matched by Scott Stevens. This season, Carlson also became the first defenseman to record five 40-assist seasons in franchise history. Since 2016-17, Carlson’s 273 assists lead the Capitals and all NHL defensemen.

12 X 40 = 8

Alex Ovechkin scored his 40th goal of the season Sunday night against the Dallas Stars, becoming sixth player in NHL history to score 40 or more goals at age 36 or older (Teemu Selanne, Brendan Shanahan, John Bucyk, Gordie Howe and Phil Esposito) in addition to reaching the mark for the 12th time in his career, which tied Wayne Gretzky for the most in NHL history.

With 40 goals in 62 games, Ovechkin required the fewest games to reach the mark at the age of 36 or older, besting the previous 70-game mark held by Howe (1968-69) and Selanne (2006-07). In addition, Ovechkin reached the 6,000-career shot mark during the first period, joining Ray Bourque (6,290) as the only players in NHL history to reach the milestone. Bourque averaged 3.85 shots per game in his career, while Ovechkin has averaged 4.77.

Singing The Blues

The Capitals face the St. Louis Blues tonight at Capital One Arena for the second and final time this season.

Power Play Ranking

The Capitals power play has been surging since January 28th. They are now ranked 20th in the league. Here is the Capitals league ranking since November 1.

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 Marcus Johansson Arrives, T.J. Oshie Takes Line Rushes, Vitek Vanecek To Start Tonight Against The Blues: News From Capitals Tuesday Morning Skate

  1. steven says:

    Just wondering, I read that MoJo had so amny points on the PP and Im wondering if that is A) why he was brought in and B) if so why us he not on the PP? And why first line minutes? IS he suppose to be the “New” enforcer on the top line?

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      Good question. MoJo practiced on the second power play this morning. I’d expect to see him there for a majority of his time, unless there is an injury to top power play unit. It was one reason he was considered. (flexible forward, can play several positions, sound defensively, etc.) As for top line today, Laviolette said that was a starting point, he was familiar with Ovi and Kuzy. I’d also expect to see him play in a number of positions over the next few games as he gets acclimated to the team.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Now if we can just get everyone healthy in the same day, we might be cooking with gas.

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