The Caps left Bridgeport, Conn. as 2-1 winners over the New York Islanders on Saturday.
How it happened: Nate Schmidt scored a power play goal midway through the first period as his slap shot from the blue line deflected through the five-hole of Islanders' goalie JF Berube. After New York tied the game in the third, Lars Eller put the Caps back on top with a power play goal of his own. Braden Holtby did the rest.
What it means: After dropping their first two games, the win was the Caps' first of the preseason.
The return of the Holtbeast: Holtby became the Caps' first player to return to game action after playing in the World Cup. He did not play in a any of Canada's six World Cup games, but there was absolutely no sign of rust as the Islanders were only able to manage one goal against the Caps' netminder on 25 shots. Holtby looked sharp in all aspects from his quick glove to his positioning. The win should be taken with a grain of salt given that the Islanders played with a glorified AHL lineup, but Holtby did exactly what you would expect one of the best goalies in the NHL to do against that level of opposition.
Bumps and bruises: Both Madison Bowey and Marcus Johansson suffered injuries in the first period and were held out the remainder of the game. Bowey's injury was labeled an upper-body injury by the team. Johansson got tangled up with defenseman Ryan Pulock and fell awkwardly with his left leg extended.
In the preseason, teams tend to err on the side of caution rather than put players back onto the ice in a meaningless game. That makes it difficult to assess the true severity of these injuries. We will have to wait to for further word from the team.
Powerless?: Both of the Caps' tallies on the night came on the power play. Of the team's five goals in the preseason, four of them have come on the man advantage with only one coming at even strength.
Fightin' words: Liam O'Brien and Ross Johnston seemed to be sparring with one another all night. Finally in the third period the two players dropped the gloves. It was the Caps' second fight of the preseason.
Look ahead: The Caps will have a team scrimmage on Sunday and return to game action Monday at Verizon Center as they start a home-and-home with the St. Louis Blues (sort of). After hosting St. Louis Monday the Caps will face the Blues again on Wednesday, but in Kansas City at the Sprint Center rather than in St. Louis.
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