Washington Capitals (15-8-3 33pts) v. Vegas Golden Knights (14-13-1 29pts)
Time: 10p EST
Station: NBC Sports Washington, ATTSN-RM, and Sportsnet
For the first time in 6 months since winning the Stanley Cup, the Washington Capitals return to Las Vegas to take on the Golden Knights. The Capitals are coming off of an embarrassing 6-5 loss to the Anaheim Ducks, which saw them blow a 4 goal lead and give up 5 straight goals in the defeat, and are looking to bounce back to their winning ways after the 7 game winning streak was ended. Meanwhile, the Golden Knights are still having an up and down season so far as they continue to struggle to rekindle that spark they had last season, and are hoping a win tonight against their Stanley Cup Finals nemesis can start that fire.
Alex Ovechkin — Nicklas Backstrom — Tom Wilson
Jakub Vrana — Evgeny Kuznetsov — Brett Connolly
Andre Burakovsky — Lars Eller — Devante Smith-Pelly
Chandler Stephenson — Nic Dowd — Dmitrij Jaskin
Michal Kempny — John Carlson
Dmitry Orlov — Matt Niskanen
Christian Djoos — Madison Bowey
Scratched: Jonas Siegenthaler, Travis Boyd
Injured: T.J. Oshie (concussion), Brooks Orpik (knee surgery)
Keys to the Game:
1. Don’t get complacent
The other day against Anaheim the Capitals took a commanding 5-1 lead, and then eased off the gas and became complacent. That complacency costed the Capitals as they gave up 5 straight goals to lose the game. If the Capitals find themselves in another situation where they get a commanding lead over Vegas, they have to stay motivated and keep playing hard.
2. Pick up the physicality
The Capitals their last few games have been dominated in the hits department and need to pick up their physicality a bit and assert themselves more in their battles for the puck.
Vegas Golden Knights:
Jonathan Marchessault — William Karlsson — Reilly Smith
Max Pacioretty — Cody Eakin — Alex Tuch
Daniel Carr — Tomas Nosek — Ryan Carpenter
William Carrier — Pierre-Edouard Bellemare — Ryan Reaves
Brayden McNabb — Colin Miller
Shea Theodore — Nate Schmidt
Deryk Engelland — Nick Holden
Scratched: Jon Merrill, Brad Hunt, Oscar Lindberg
Injured: Paul Stastny (lower body), Erik Haula (undisclosed)
Keys to the Game:
1. Get a good start
Vegas is a team that many are saying is having a disappointing season so far compared to their historic run last season. The Golden Knights will have a lot of motivation going into tonight’s game against the Capitals and will want to avenge their Stanley Cup Finals loss to the Capitals at home this past June.