Conor Sheary Returns Home For Birth Of Second Child, Evgeny Kuznetsov Out With non-Covid Illness, Alex Alexeyev Cycles In: Notes From Capitals Practice In Anaheim

The Washington Capitals winged their way to Southern California Sunday night following their 7-4 loss to the Sabres in Buffalo Sunday afternoon. They begin their annual west coast swing against the Ducks in Anaheim on Wednesday. 

After a day off on Monday the Capitals held practice at the Honda Center in Anaheim on Tuesday at 2PM ET. Conor Sheary returned home after the Buffalo game for the birth of his second child, but is expected to be back in Anaheim in time for tomorrow’s game. Evgeny Kuznetsov also didn’t practice on Tuesday due to a non-Covid illness.

The forward lines and defensive pairs at Tuesday’s practice in Anaheim, courtesy of Tarik El Bashir:

Alex Ovechkin — Nic Dowd — Tom Wilson
Sonny Milano — Dylan Strome — T.J. Oshie
Marcus Johansson — Nicklas Backstrom — Craig Smith
Aliaksei Protas – Lars Eller — Nicolas Aube-Kubel

Erik Gustafsson — Trevor Van Riemsdyk
Martin Fehervary — Nick Jensen
Alex Alexeyev – Matt Irwin

Darcy Kuemper
Charlie Lindgren

Extras: D Dylan McIlrath

John Carlson and Anthony Mantha are on the trip with the team. The inclusion of the two on the trip is good to see, but shouldn’t necessarily be seen as leading indicator that they are nearing return, particularly for Carlson.


Alex Ovechkin scored his team-leading 33rd goal of the season on Sunday against the Buffalo Sabres. With the goal, Ovechkin tied Stan Mikita (1,467) for the 16th-most points in NHL history. Ovechkin has recorded 57 points (33g, 24a) in 57 games and has already passed Doug Gilmour (1,414), Adam Oates (1,420), Bryan Trottier (1,425) and Teemu Selanne (1,457) on the NHL’s all-time points list this season.

Ovechkin, who has a career points-per-game rate of 1.10 (1,467p in 1,331 GP) and a career goals-per-game rate of 0.61 (813g in 1,331 GP), is on a 44-goal pace this season. Should Ovechkin reach the 40-goal mark, it would mark his 13th career 40-goal season, passing Wayne Gretzky (12) for the most 40-goal seasons in NHL history. [MORE HERE]


Today’ stat of the day look’s at the Capitals team shooting percentage at five-on-five. The chart below plots the Capitals team shooting percentage for each season beginning with the 2007-08 season. [Click to enlarge]

The Capitals currently sit at 8.05%, which is 22nd in the league. Should the Capitals finish the season at this rate, it would be the team’s lowest percentage since the 2013-2014 season.


Jake Karabela scored the overtime game-winner for the Guelph Storm on Sunday. He  now has 18 goals and 19 assists in 57 games played so far this season. He’s shot the puck just 84 times for a 22.6% shooting percentage. However, he is a whopping -24 for the season.

“That’s playoff hockey. Everything down the line’s playoff hockey. You’ve got to prepare for the playoffs and I think that was a good example of it,” Karabela said.

“We didn’t have a lot of shots, but i think we controlled the puck very well in the offensive end and played well in our own end the first two periods … solid, solid play,” Karabela said.

Alexander Suzdalev recorded his first career WHL hat trick over the weekend [MORE HERE]. He met with the media following the game.


  • Source: NHL watches trades for cap manipulation. [ESPN]
  • Eager Trotz set to go about business of ‘resetting’ Predators. [ESPN]
  • Caps-Canes top outdoor game outside of Winter Classic in four years. [Sports Media Watch]
  • Lightning’s Nick Paul To Those Struggling With Mental Health: ‘People Are Here To Pull You Up’ [Forbes]

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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2 Responses to Conor Sheary Returns Home For Birth Of Second Child, Evgeny Kuznetsov Out With non-Covid Illness, Alex Alexeyev Cycles In: Notes From Capitals Practice In Anaheim

  1. hockeydruid says:

    Like seeing AA in the lineup. Did Smith practice today or is he being held out for trade reasons?

  2. Marky says:

    No way Smith gets moved. He’s like trying to move another Mantha but worse. He will play out the year, then retire.

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