Hurricanes Trounce Capitals, 4-1 In 2023 Stadium Series Game


The Washington Capitals fell to the Carolina Hurricanes, 4-1, Saturday night at the 2023 Stadium Series Game in Raleigh, North Carolina. The loss drops the Capitals record to 28-24-6 (62 points) on the season.

Darcy Kuemper (16-16-0-4, 2.63 GAA, .914 sv%) got the start in goal for the visiting Capitals. Frederick Andersen (12-4-0-0, 2.61 GAA, .899 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the Hurricanes. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Capitals:

Sonny Milano — Evgeny Kuznetsov — Tom Wilson
Marcus Johansson — Nicklas Backstrom — Conor Sheary
Anthony Mantha — Dylan Strome — T.J. Oshie
Nicolas Aube-Kubel — Lars Eller — Garnet Hathaway

Erik Gustafsson — Trevor Van Riemsdyk
Dmitry Orlov — Nick Jensen
Matt Irwin — Martin Fehervary

Darcy Kuemper
Charlie Lindgren

Scratched: Alexander Alexeyev, Aliaksei Protas, Joe Snively


The Hurricanes opened the scoring just 2:11 into the contest. Jesperi Kotkaniemi (10) kicked home the opening score. Teuvo Teravainen (21) and Martin Necas (28) had the helpers.

And that was it for the opening period, with the Canes taking a 1-0 lead into the first intermission. Canes led in five-on-five shot attempts, 15-14, scoring chances, 10-8, high-danger chances, 5-3. Canes led in xGF .81 to .50. Caps led the battle at the dot, 73-27%.


The Hurricanes made it 2-0 on Paul Stastny’s seventh goal of the season at 5:47 of the middle frame. The goal was setup on the end of a turnover by the Capitals in the defensive zone.

The Canes made it 3-0 on Martin Necas’ 22nd goal of the season at 8:48 of the second period. Brent Burns (30) and Jesperi Kotkaniemi (14) had the assists. The goal came on the power play after Evgeny Kuznetsov was called for high-sticking.

The Canes stretched their lead to 4-0 with a tally from Teuvo Teravainen (7) at 11:17. Martin Necas (29) and Frederick Andersen (1) had the assists.

And that was it for the middle frame. The Hurricanes led in five-on-five shot attempts 15-10 in the second period and 30-24 after 40 minutes of play. The Hurricanes led in scoring chances, 10-3 and high-danger chances, 4-1. The Hurricanes led in expected goals for 1.9 to .68.


The Capitals finally got on the scoreboard with a tally from Tom Wilson (3) at 10:32 of the final frame. Sonny Milano (15) and Martin Fehervary (7) had the helpers.

The rest of the game transpired quietly, with no additional scoring.

The Capitals now return home for a three-game home stand beginning on Tuesday against the Detroit Red Wings.


  • Tom Wilson scored his third goal of the season. In three career outdoor games, Wilson has recorded two points (1g, 1a).
  • Sonny Milano recorded his 15th assist of the season on Wilson’s goal. Milano’s 23 points (8g, 15a) since Nov. 5 ranks tied for fifth on Washington.
  • Martin Fehervary was credited with the secondary assist on Wilson’s goal. In 46 games this season, Fehervary has recorded 11 points (4g, 7a).
  • With the Hurricanes win, they sweep the season series with the Capitals.
  • The loss is the first for the Capitals in outdoor games (3-1).
  • The Capitals extend their current losing streak to four games.
  • This was the NHL’s 37th outdoor game.
  • Stadium Series attendance: 56,961 (sellout)

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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44 Responses to Hurricanes Trounce Capitals, 4-1 In 2023 Stadium Series Game

  1. GRin430 says:

    Sell. Now. Sell, Sell, Sell, Sell, Sell.

    • Anonymous says:

      Leonsis ans MacLellan have already said that will never happen as long as Ovi’s in town.

      • GRin430 says:

        They actually opened the door to that by structuring the roster with large numbers of UFAs at the end of this year. They only have 14 players under contract for next year, so there was going to be a lot of turnover no matter what. Sell now and get what you can for the UFAs, then use the roster and cap space to try to bring in younger talent.

        • Anonymous says:

          Not necessarily. They will re-sign a number of those FA’s. They already signed two. So they weren’t gonna lose 14 players no matter what.

          • GRin430 says:

            They can sign any of the 10 UFAs they want in July whether they trade them now or not. But given that they are highly unlikely to make the playoffs, the Caps gain nothing by keeping those UFAs to just play out the season. If they trade them now they get something — anything — in return for a rental.

            Several of the UFAs are almost certainly worth more to some other club than they are to the Caps right now and they should be able to get some value back for as many as 8 of the 10 UFAs. Throw in a marginal kid or two from Hershey or the rights to Gibson (who is de facto another UFA), and maybe they get a reasonably high pick back from somebody, plus a few mid-rounders.

            Anything they get back is added value to the franchise going forward, since again, those players have no significant value to a team that isn’t going to make the playoffs, and given the amount of payroll they eat up, Ted would actually save some money.

            Regarding the 2 signings, Milano was a reasonably cheap, relatively young, mid-grade pickup/signing. Decent role player and priced accordingly, but no big loss if he is packaged in a deal.

            Strome was an RFA — they shouldn’t trade RFAs anyway, the club has significant leverage that shouldn’t be given up except in extraordinary circumstances — like the player has indicated that they don’t want to stay in the organization, or is asking for stupid money and promises to go overseas if they don’t get it. The Caps 2 RFAs are Fehervary and Alexeyev … I don’t think they are going anywhere.

            • Anonymous says:

              “Highly unlikely to make the playoffs”? They are one point out with a game in hand.

              • missy says:

                Yes playing like this for month and half ….very likely we will make it

              • hockeydruid says:

                Anon they may be 1 point out, however; they have to jump 2 teams one of which is the Pens and the Pens have 4 games in hand and the Caps only face them once more and that one will be in Pitt. Not holding my breath that this team with or without Ovie can turn it around as their PP has dropped like a lead sinker and they look old, tired and ready to mail it in for the season, especially last night. Yes they have a game on the Isles but the Pens have 4 on the Caps and the Sabers and shocker Red Wings have 5.

                Honestly what does it mean to make the playoffs only to get booted in the 1st round for the 5th time in a row? Would it not be better to miss the playoffs and get a higher draft pick? Sometimes it is wiser to look at the future and plan for that than to play for today and get nowhere the next decade. For reference check out Detroit who made the playoffs for 25 years straight and hasn’t been back there since 2016 and then they lost in the first round.

                This team is not, has not and will not be a viable Cup contender for many a year. So lets stop pretending that making the playoffs and losing in the first round means anything. For the sake of an ego of the owner and getting a personal record NOT a team record or Cup this team has been condemned to mediocrity for the near future. Are you as a fan happy with that?

    • GRin430 says:

      If they put forward that weak an effort in a nationally televised outdoor game… They’re mentally and physically toast. Done. Finished.

      Clear the wreckage and sell the scrap to the highest bidder, even if it’s for a few bags of pucks. Play the kids and this summer use the opportunity of having a few extra picks in a strong draft, along with significant cap space, to start a rebuild.

    • hockeydruid says:

      Totally agree as if they don’t and resign most of the UFA and RFA on this very average team they are condemning to mediocrity for years to come just to try and get Ovie a scoring record that is not a team goal or a CUP but will satisfy Ted’s ego!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Another poor effort. Make ‘em walk back to DC, and have them pay all Caps fans expense who made the trip.

  3. Jon Sorensen says:

    Really underwhelming effort/performance. They gave the Canes a much better effort earlier in the week. Much better.

  4. Anonymous says:

    We need performance based contracts.

  5. Anonymous says:

    They are just mailing it in at this point. No uncomfortableness.To easy.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Mac’s gonna have to make what appears to be big changes, but they may not necessarily be. Deal the players that won’t be re-signed in the summer. A lot of moves for a series of third round draft picks, and maybe trade for one big flashy name. Caps have season ticket renewals open this week.

    • GRin430 says:

      Again, they should deal any UFA for whom any team will offer anything of value. Then go shopping in July for whatever UFAs they want, whether they were on the team this year or not.

      But really, given the way this team has played this year… how many of those guys do they really want back, particularly at UFA prices?

      • James says:

        That’s not fair. This team over-performed for much of this season. The return of Wilson and Backstrom (both of whom I love) precipitated the collapse. Carlson’s injury contributed.
        They are an old team. Might as well collapse now as in the first round of the play-offs. Acquiring a bunch of 3rd rounders isn’t going to help anything. It’s the money – the money. There has got to be a way to get out from under that $20M owed next year to Ovi and Backstrom.

        • GRin430 says:

          This team over-performed for 5 weeks, basically the month of December. Other than that, they have a losing record for every other month. My eyeballs, such as they are, tell me that the real Caps are the ones we’ve seen for most of the season — with the losing record — not the ones we saw in December.

          In fact I still think it’s possible that aliens replaced the real Caps with terminator-type robots for the month of December, then realized they made abducted the wrong team’s players by mistake and put the real Caps back. I see no other viable explanation.

          Unfortunately, as long as they are healthy and want to play in DC, there’s nothing the Caps can do with 8 or 19, since they have “no movement clauses” in their contracts. 74 has a modified NTC, which also makes him very difficult to move anywhere. NHL contracts are pretty ironclad — once signed, they can’t be renegotiated.

          3rd rounders won’t help this year or next, but eventually they will. The Caps have drafted relatively well given how low in the order they have been drafting for the past 15 years or so. In fact they currently have several prior-year 2nd-5th-round players, plus some former college FAs, in the system right now who might help next year or the year after that. Those kids aren’t likely to be superstars, but they are potentially solid, middle/bottom six and 2nd/3rd pair NHL players, and a couple might surprise everybody and turn out to be top-level players.

          And most importantly they are cheap. With what they already have in the system, plus a couple of 3rd rounders in the next couple of drafts, the Cap should have enough cheap players filling the roster to provide the cap space to go after the few higher priced FAs they would need to fill top spots and be competitive.

          The Caps have depended on mid-/high-priced veteran players instead of kids for the past several years. At this point most of those veterans are significantly under-performing their salary slots. Fortunately for the Caps, a lot of those contracts end this summer, giving them an opportunity to completely restructure the roster. I’m just suggesting they start now instead of waiting.

          • franky619 says:

            Nothing needs to be done with Ovy, should be pretty clear the impact he has on this team, they are worthless without him and this has been the case for years it’s nothing new. He is easily worth his 9.5 millions. 30 goal scorer are paid 7+ millions how much do you think a perennial 50 goal scorer is worth? Backstrom on the other hand, that contract is a disgrace he’s never been worth it even when he was healty. Always relied on other players to produce his presence on the 1st PP is a nuisance, there’s no Carlson or Ovy to inflated his stats and by himself he’s useless. At 5v5 he’s getting so badly outplayed and everybody they play with him instantly goes into limp mode and becomes irrelevant. I would not even use him as a 3rd liner it’s insulting for other 3rd liners around the league.

            • GRin430 says:

              I agree on Ovechkin, he isn’t going anywhere and shouldn’t. I was just reacting to the comment about getting out from under his contract — not happening.

              I disagree somewhat on Backstrom. His game is very subtle, always has been. He can find open teammates and get them the puck when others can’t. He makes his linemates better. He’s a solid defender. He’s not a sniper, but he scores enough to remain a threat. He’s an important voice in the locker room and on the ice.

              Is he worth $9.2M? That’s a judgment call, but at this point probably not, in my view. But he’s still a valuable asset to the team, and besides, there’s nothing that can be done about his contract, as long as he wants to keep playing.

              • franky619 says:

                Not sure what you’ve been watching but Backstrom does’nt make his teamates better he relies on them produce always has. Wether it’s on the PP or 5v5. Joe Thorton made his teamates better, so does Crosby and Draisatil but Backstrom dose’nt and was never deserving of such a contract. He was very well paid at 6.7, he would never have had these stats anywhere else in the league.

                • GRin430 says:

                  I’ve watched him live from the upper deck as a STH for many years.

                  Backstrom at his best has a way of controlling the pace of the game when he has the puck, finding teammates and making passes through traffic that others can’t. He’s never been fast, he’s never been flashy — just very effective. If you ask the guys that played with him, I’m willing to bet that they would tell you that a big part of their success was due to his play.

                  Is he currently the player he once was? I don’t think so, but he’s only played 15 games coming back from major surgery, and given that skating speed was never part of his game, he could eventually regain his full ability to control play when he has the puck.

                  • franky619 says:

                    I watched the 1073 games he played for the Caps and I also grew up watching Gretzky, Lemieux, Datsyuk Zetterberg etc and still watch a ton of hockey other than the Caps. He won the lottery beind drafted by Washington and riding shotgun with Ovy, his stats are inflated like many others who played for the Caps diuring the Ovechkin era and ended up in the AHL or bought out after leaving. Controlling the play are you f**king kidding me, the only thing he does is slow the play down and that’s not a skill that’s the only thing he can do. Plus he does’nt show up in critical moment never did. Always chokes in the playoff. Had he been drafted by another team he would retired by now.

    • novafyre says:

      Poor season ticket response might be the one thing to convince Ted that drastic changes need be made. If renewals are robust, I don’t expect any major changes.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Sell they must but Ted needs to tell that HC to play youth for some energy. All three healthy scratches from last night need to be in the lineup and getting serious minutes. And selling off UFAs or underperforming players does not make it a rebuild. The core is set to return next year.

  8. Lance says:

    So…I’m a happy go lucky fella. The Caps won a Cup. Should’ve won more. But we did win. If the team is trending sharply downward as I think it is then they have to restock the team with stars. You need superstars in the NHL to have a chance. We have Ovie, a superhero with a cape. That’s it.

    The only blue chip prospect in our system is Miroschnichenko. McMichael looks like he’ll be an NHLer once Lavi leaves town. Lapierre is struggling in the AHL.

    It’s important that Cape fans speak out. I don’t enjoy complaining. I just know that if Ted and BMav deny reality the Caps could be in the bottom half of the league for 10 years or more. The Caps are old. We can’t score. And we’re soft on D. We’re unlucky to pull out of this.

    What I’m saying is: prepare to TANK!

    • novafyre says:

      You say it’s important for Caps fans to express themselves. I agree. We hear the grumbling. Are they saying the same thing with their dollars? Are ticket sales down? Will 2023-24 season ticket sales decline? Are merchandise sales down? I doubt that we know those answers. But if the team is still turning a healthy profit, why would Ted change? Especially since he has shown in both Caps and Wizards prior management decisions that he hates change.

      • Lance says:

        I’m living in the past. Winning the Cup used to be the important thing. But that has all changed. I can’t get used to it.

        I think I heard the average ticket last night was over $300. If so, the business model is working even if the game itself is less exciting than it used to be.

        • novafyre says:

          CBS Sports says of the nine games next Tuesday, 5 have starting ticket prices cheaper than the Caps. If this team is still making money . . .

    • GRin430 says:

      The Caps’ system might not have a lot of superstars, but there are some solid prospects. Miroschnichenko and Chesley from ’22 seem to have the most top-end potential right now (you want D-men with snarl? You’ll like Chesley). Iorio appears to have top-pair tools as well.

      Lapierre is just 21 and has great speed and skill, he apparently just hit a wall in Hershey because he really hadn’t played much the past couple of years. It’s crazy to give up on a 21-year-old.

      In addition, Protas is clearly a keeper, Suzdalev might be a sleeper, Gucciardi has flashed talent, Trineyev is doing okay as a kid in the KHL, etc.

      Are the latter likely to be superstars? Nah, but the key is to have enough cheap kids capable of filling out the bottom 2/3s of the roster so that you can afford to go after proven high-end talent via trades/FA.


  9. Diann Bullock says:

    I’m wondering why Kuemper wasn’t pulled after the second period. Thoughts?

  10. novafyre says:

    Caps won the sartorial contest and the mode of arrival contest and then gave up for the evening. Caps were not just not winning, they weren’t entertaining.

    • Anonymous says:

      I wonder if folks still love those jackets, considering the sour taste associated with them. I bet they still sell out of those this week.

  11. Anonymous says:

    They look old and uninterested. Milano Strome Oshie and Garny are literally the only forwards who seem to care

  12. Jeremy says:

    I’m not a Caps fan. I only follow them and this site for Bears and prospect coverage. As an outsider this has been building for a while now. The front office hasn’t done a great job with the draft and giving contracts to guys who I believe aren’t worth the length. The coaching staff from Trotz to Reirden to Laviolette are dead set on not giving younger guys in-game experience. The current core is getting older and has been since the cup run. The last 5 or so years has been building to this. The Caps are going to have to start picking things up this offseason if they want to avoid a harsh rebuild in the near future.

  13. Scottlew73 says:

    Being non Caps fan,gives you great perspective on state of team.All management want is to keep the Old Band together for Ovie! Let’s be truthful! How can you “financially “ justify keeping Backie,Wilson,Oshie,Carlson,on big money contracts!
    After last two early exits a smart GM would’ve started shopping money contracts for prospects . The slow burn downhill isn’t fair especially to fans who went through hard times & if gradually rebuild would’ve started then you could be back into contending territory. Lavi only lasts 2 or less years at all his stops.

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