Lines And Pairs Remain The Same, Laviolette Meets With Media: Notes From Capitals’ Practice In Vancouver

The Washington Capitals made their way west on Sunday following their 5-1 loss to the New Jersey Devils on Saturday night. They begin their annual tour of the Pacific Northwest against the Canucks in Vancouver on Tuesday. The team held practice Monday afternoon at Rogers Arena in Vancouver.


There were no changes to the forward lines and defensive pairs Monday afternoon in Vancouver, per Samantha Pell/Washington Post:

Alex Ovechkin — Dylan Strome — Conor Sheary
Sonny Milano— Evgeny Kuznetsov — T.J. Oshie
Marcus Johansson — Lars Eller — Anthony Mantha
Aliaksei Protas — Nic Dowd — Garnet Hathaway

Erik Gustafsson — John Carlson
Martin Fehervary — Nick Jensen
Matt Irwin — Trevor van Riemsdyk

Darcy Kuemper
Charlie Lindgren

Extras: Joe Snively, Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Alex Alexeyev. There was no report as to whether Dmitry Orlov made the trip.

Injuries: Tom Wilson (ACL), Nicklas Backstrom (hip), Carl Hagelin (hip), Connor Brown, Beck Malenstyn (finger), and Dmitry Orlov (lower-body)

Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette met with the media following the team’s practice, but no new information regarding Dmitry Orlov was provided. He did not make the trip to New Jersey, but the team said he might join the team out west.


The boys hit a local gun range on Sunday after arriving in Vancouver.


John Carlson scored his sixth goal of the season on Saturday at New Jersey in the third period, marking his fifth third-period goal in 17 games. Since returning to the Capitals’ lineup on Nov. 11 after missing the previous six games due to injury, Carlson leads the Capitals in goals (4) and ranks tied for second in points (6). Carlson has recorded 12 points (6g, 6a) in 17 games, which leads Washington defensemen. More here.


As we noted in our Capitals weekly trends report on Sunday, the Capitals continue to improve in possession metrics, which is an encouraging sign for longer term health. [Click to enlarge]

The Capitals’ scoring chances for (SCF%) is now above 50%, meaning they are creating more scoring chances than the opposition.


The following graph plots the save percentage (sv%) and expected goals differential (xGA – GA) for all NHL goaltenders with 200+ minutes of ice time. [Click to enlarge].

Darcy Kuemper remains in the upper right quadrant while Charlie Lindgren has dipped into the lower left quadrant.


Connor McMichael converted in the shootout to help the Bears win 1-0 on Saturday night in Hartford. McMichael has one goal in four games played so far with the Bears.

Ivan Miroshnichenko was back with the VHL team on Monday and recorded an assist in his second game with the team.

Miroshnichenko has three assists in two games played with the VHL club (One level below KHL). He has eight goals and three assists in eight games played for the MHL club (two levels below KHL)

Power play points for the Hershey Bears after 18 games of the season. [Click to enlarge]


Readers Poll: As players begin returning from injury, the Capitals will need to make room, and tough decisions are ahead. Our first poll, who are you keeping?

Who are you keeping if a decision is needed to be made between the following two players?

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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9 Responses to Lines And Pairs Remain The Same, Laviolette Meets With Media: Notes From Capitals’ Practice In Vancouver

  1. Anonymous says:

    The Dmitry Orlov mystery continues…

  2. Anonymous says:

    They will need a vacuum to remove the cobwebs from Joe Snively

  3. novafyre says:

    Just read a new quote from Torts: It’s a young, dumb league. Yes it is. Just watched the Bolts beat the Sabres 6-5. Bolts coach Coop hated it. He loves 1-0 games, doesn’t ever want his team to give up 5 goals. But oh were those Sabre goals beautiful. Tampa announcers and analysts kept remarking how fast the Sabres were, how quick to respond, how opportunistic. When there was a Sabre breakaway it wasn’t just one player but an entire flock of them. One of the most entertaining games I have watched this year. I would have been ok with a Bolts loss just because it was so much fun. Wild West Young Guns hockey and the Bolts struggled to keep up.

    Yes, the Sabres have drafted, bought, traded for some good young players. But look at their coach. Look at his history. USHL, ECHL, AHL, USA Hockey National Team Development Program, University of Wisconsin and three times assistant NHL coach. He has been working with young developing players all his career. He knows what works with young players and how to use them. And man, they put on a show tonight.

    • dwgie26 says:

      I saw that interview. Classic Torts. He also called young players soft (in so many words). He also said you need to still go by gut (vs full on Fancy Stats).

      I’ll be honest, had to look up their coach Don Granato of Granato fame. Your path above is spot on… won some nice awards and championships along the way. No doubt he has been good with young players but he has grinded his way through at 55. Will be interesting to see if he can also handle more mature talent and dynamic changes. One thing for sure, the NHL needs some bright (young) minds.

      • novafyre says:

        Not saying they’re going to win the Cup. Not even sure how far they will go in the playoffs as playoff hockey is more controlled and defense is key. But they are learning and building and providing their fans with a lot of entertainment while doing it. Caps are an old age home, full of great memories, but not that much to offer now and even less in the future. I watch the games, I root for the team, but right now I’m not really enjoying their games.

  4. dwgie26 says:

    I thought Caps played pretty well, especially early on Saturday. They had plenty of quality scoring chances but didn’t finish. Plush Caps need to start building come chemistry by having more time together. So I like that lines are the same (except I would really like Orlov back). I think if LuJo was healthy he might have come up for a few (less than 10) games.

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      Agree. Devils are getting pretty good at capitalizing on even the rare mistake. They used the same formula to run over the Rangers last night.

      As for LuJo, he is unfortunately injured over again.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Why is it the Russians NEVER participate in the team building activities?

    • hockeydruid says:

      Because the focus is on the team bonding not on one player being outstanding or getting top billing! They prefer to stay in their rooms like they did the past 2 seasons and party amongst themselves as they think they are special.

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