Dmitry Orlov Skates, But Will Not Play Against Flames: Notes From Saturday’s Morning Skate In Calgary

The Washington Capitals made their way to Calgary, Alberta, Thursday night following their 3-2 overtime loss to the Seattle Kraken. They next face the Flames on Saturday night. Puck drop is set for 10PM. [Preview Here.]
The team held morning skate at the ScotiaBank Saddledome in Calgary on Saturday morning. The forward lines and defensive pairs at this morning’s skate:

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
Alex Alexeyev — Trevor van Riemsdyk

Darcy Kuemper
Charlie Lindgren

Extras: Dmitry Orlov, Joe Snively, Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Matt Irwin

Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov (lower body, IR) participated in morning skate but will once again be out tonight against Calgary, per Laviolette. [per Samantha Pell/ Washington Post]

Injuries: Tom Wilson, Nicklas Backstrom, Carl Hagelin, Connor Brown, Beck Malenstyn.


The Washington Capitals conclude their regular-season series with the Calgary Flames on Saturday night just eight days after they shut Calgary out by a score of 3-0 at Capital One Arena. Washington has points in seven straight games vs. Calgary (6-0-1) and is 13-3-3 against them since 2010-11.

Action from Scotiabank Saddledome can be seen on NBC Sports Washington in-market or ESPN+ out-of-market starting at 10 PM ET. [Preview Here]


Today’s “stat of the day” is more food for thought. Laviolette decided to start Thursday night’s overtime against the Kraken, which lasted all of seven seconds, with John Carlson, Lars Eller and T.J. Oshie.

Several stats indicate that this might/might not have been the best move, including the players expected goals for percentage (xGF%). We don’t know many of the underlying factors (potential injuries, etc.), but the philosophy does align with Laviolette’s well-known preference for veterans in key situations, regardless.

Laviolette also had to send out the Capitals players before Seattle, so he may have been trying to put the best players out there for potentially seeing all four of the Kraken’s lines. Interesting strategy.


Today’s bonus stat plots the goals per game average from 1993-94 to the first full month of this season. (courtesy of JFreshHockey).

At 6.4 goals per game, NHL scoring is at its highest level since 1993-94. In that time, it fell as low as 5.1 in the dead puck era and stagnated around 5.5 in the early 2010s before taking off in 2017-18.


Ivan Miroshnichenko made his first appearance with Avangard’s KHL club on Saturday, participating in the team’s practice. He is expected to make his first start in the KHL this weekend.

Haakon Hanelt had a nice pass of the boards for Gatineau’s first goal on Saturday. The goal launched the team’s annual teddy bear toss.

Alexander Suzdalev had a nice primary assist in last night’s game against Prince George.

And finally, a tip of the cap to goaltender Hunter Shepard, who was named the AHL goaltender of the month this week. Shepard is the first Bears netminder to earn this honor since future NHL All-Star Braden Holtby was named the AHL Goalie of the Month nearly 10 years ago in December 2012.

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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10 Responses to Dmitry Orlov Skates, But Will Not Play Against Flames: Notes From Saturday’s Morning Skate In Calgary

  1. Anonymous says:

    We need Orly back…but then who gets cut from the roster? NAK?

  2. dwgie26 says:

    Irwin will take a seat when Orlov comes back. Question is, who go to waivers. Could be NAK, Alexyev, or Protas (waiver exempt).

    Alexyev is serving as the 7th dee so he is needed until Orlov comes back. I still maintain he will easily clear waivers, but if brass is worried about that, then I wish they would at least give him some games over Irwin. Caps may be purposely holding him out so the other NHL GM’s can’t get a look at him. I’m not even sure he is a top 4 dee in Hershey TODAY, but one thing for sure is that he needs to play. And if they want him to play in NHL, then play him and keep 8 dee and 13 forwards which would likely be sending NAK down and having Snively as 13F.

    then we have to make another move when Beck is back and another when Wilson is back. Regardless of who goes down, we are going to expose a couple of good players with waiver appeal for others.

    • hockeydruid says:

      Remember you have a HC who does NOT like younger players and would rather they sit and rust or trade them for washed up players that he is comfortable with. Backy isnt coming back and not just because of the hip but I recently rea that he is having a problem even holding his stick. Yes the most important thing to the owner is getting Ovie his record and then getting to the playoffs even if they keep losing in the first round. Its about time that they realize Ovie is going to break the record probably in the last month of his current contract so they should start to structure this team to be in a position to at least be competitive when he retires. That starts with a NEW GM and HC asap and then playing the younger players and trading a lot of the older high priced players for pick or younger player. Unloading Mantha, Eller, Kuzy, Orlov, Jensen and Carlson will open slots for younger players. After all there are 13/14 UFA/RFA after this season and the Caps cannot resign them all. So trade a few starting now so that the new HC can see what he has to work with net year. And since they are getting a new HC might as well clean house and obtain a new GM who will be on the same page as the new HC.

      • Anonymous says:

        He doesn’t hate young players. He has played plenty of them. The ones who earn spots. He didn’t play CMM and for good reason. March 4th gives a couple of good months for someone in Hershey to give the Org and Lavi good reason to trade Eller but that isn’t happening now. Mantha can happen now for all i care. He is easily replaced by Snively IMO.

        That is crazy about Backstrom. Haven’t seen or heard that. Can you post the article or link where that was credibly stated?

  3. Jon Sorensen says:

  4. Jon Sorensen says:

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