Capitals Power Play Shows Signs Of Life: “We Liked The Way It Looked In Practice”

After going 0-for-9 on the man advantage to open the 2022-23 season, the Capitals seem to have found a rhythm, scoring on the power play in each of the last two games.

Alex Ovechkin’s power play marker less than a minute into the game Tuesday against Vancouver came on a Brock Boeser high-sticking call at 36 seconds. Then John Carlson’s tally just past mid-way in the third period brought the Caps level with the Canucks.

It marked the first time this season Washington converted twice on the power play. The team has now moved up from the bottom to 17th in the league with a 24.1% power play conversion rate. They now have the third-best conversion rate for teams that have already played four games.

So what changed?

“We’re just kind of encroaching a little bit more than we were, trying to not so much set up a play but find a play,” Carlson said. “Just move and find a play versus let’s drag this guy over here, let’s try to isolate this guy. With that mindset we’ve got ourselves into better positions and got to the interior a lot more. Sometimes pucks just find their way to you.”

Head coach Peter Laviolette added that what they worked on with their power play unit in practice the last few days seems to have translated well into game situations.

“We liked the way it looked in practice,” he said. “It just had a different look and in both games I thought we moved it well and got the puck to the interior.”

Laviolette also said having a guy like Marcus Johansson step up his play in power play situations has made a world of difference the last couple days.

“He’s helped a lot I think just mixing it up a little bit,” Laviolette said. “It’s different personnel and everybody brings a little something different to the table. It’s early but it’s nice to get off the mark and get some power play goals and have it make a difference in a hockey game.”

The Caps will look to carry that momentum on the man advantage over to Ottawa on Thursday.

By Jordan Bondurant

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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6 Responses to Capitals Power Play Shows Signs Of Life: “We Liked The Way It Looked In Practice”

  1. Anonymous says:

    As much as I hate him, 90 has made the power play look better these games.

  2. Jonathan says:

    MJ has played so well this season. We’re lucky to have him. Once again he shows his multi talented skill, good at 5 v 5, pk, and pp. He has 9 shots on goal so far this season, which is an encouraging sign from a guy who hasn’t done much offensively in recent years. It’s a small sample size but it’s the best shots per game average in his career. And it’s not like the shots were outside low pct shots either. Most of them up close and personal.

  3. novafyre says:

    Wow, they actually changed up their PP? Who thought of this? I mean, it’s not like anyone was actually pointing out what a disaster the PP was and how it hadn’t changed in years. Why would they actually try something different? Wow, what an innovative idea!

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