Capitals

Quick Links

Capitals breakdown: Braden Holtby

759436.png

Capitals breakdown: Braden Holtby

CSNWashington.com Capitals Insider Chuck Gormley will evaluate the 2011-12 performance of each player on the Caps roster. One breakdown will occur every weekday in alphabetical order. Today: Braden Holtby
Braden Holtby
Position: Goaltender
Age: 22
HtWt: 6-2, 203
Games: 7
Record: 4-2-1
Goals Against Average: 2.49
Save Percentage: .922
Shutouts: 1
Contract Status: 1 year remaining on 3-year, 1.855 million contract 600,000 cap hit in 2012-13

Strengths: At 22, Holtby showed incredible poise in the playoffs, matching Tim Thomas save-for-save in Round 1 against the Bruins and going toe-to-toe with Henrik Lundqvist in Round 2. He fights hard to see the puck and is very difficult to beat down low. Moreover, his puck-handling skills make him a third defenseman capable of quickly moving the puck.

Weaknesses: Holtby has a tendency to be over-aggressive in his crease and can get himself out of position with daring pokechecks. He is also very hard on himself after losses and has an exhaustive pre-game routine that could eventually sap his energy. Overall, though, he appears to have the makings of No. 1 NHL goalie.

Memorable Moment on the ice: Holtby delivered many of them, but his right pad save on the Bruins Tyler Seguin in Game 5 of the conference quarterfinals was a doozy. Holtby was guarding his left post when the puck sprung out to Seguin alone in front. Holtby flashed out his right pad to take away a certain goal and preserve a 3-2 lead.
Memorable Moment off the ice: Holtby showed incredible maturity as he spoke of the birth of his first child while preparing for Game 7 against the Rangers, but it was his pre-game meditations that drew the most attention. Before Game 7 in New York, Holtby stood in front of the first row of seats directly behind the net and stared into space while hard rock music blared from the Madison Square Garden speakers. Holtbys pre-game routine is part of a visualization technique that allows him to remain calm in a tense situation. It could be a beach, he said of his pre-game meditation. Or I could be skating on a pond back home as a kid. It brings you back down to earth and relaxes you.

2012-13 Expectations: Holtbys GAA 1.95 and save percentage .935 in the playoffs ranked third among goalies who appeared in five or more playoff games. He wont be able to hit those numbers over the course of a regular season but he has earned himself the No. 1 job over Michal Neuvirth heading into next season.

Quick Links

Game 60: Capitals vs. Lightning Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

usatsi_10434054.jpg
USA TODAY Sports

Game 60: Capitals vs. Lightning Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

Where: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.

When: 7:00 p.m. ET

How to Watch: Capitals-Lightning will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals-Lightning game on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page.

WHEN IS THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME?

The Capitals (34-18-7) take on the Lightning (39-17-3) Tuesday, February 20 at 7:00 p.m. ET in Washington.

WHAT CHANNEL IS THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME ON?

The Capitals-Lightning game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. Coverage kicks off with Capitals FaceOff at 6:00 p.m. followed by Caps GameTime at 6:30 p.m. Stay with NBC Sports Washington for Caps Extra following the game, Caps Overtime at 10:00 p.m. and Caps in 30 at 11:00 p.m. for all your postgame coverage. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)

6:00 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
6:30 p.m. — Caps GameTime
7:00 p.m. — Capitals vs. Lightning
9:30 p.m. — Caps Extra
10:00 p.m. — Caps Overtime
11:00 p.m. — Caps in 30

WHAT ARE THE PROJECTED LINES FOR THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME?

Here are the projected lines for the Caps-Lightning game:

Forwards
Alex Ovechkin - Nicklas Backstrom - Tom Wilson
Jakub Vrana - Evgeny Kuznetsov - T.J. Oshie
Brett Connolly - Lars Eller - Andre Burakovsky
Chandler Stephenson - Jay Beagle - Devante Smith-Pelly

Defensemen
Christian Djoos - John Carlson
Dmitry Orlov - Matt Niskanen
Brooks Orpik - Madison Bowey

Braden Holtby starts with Philipp Grubauer as backup

Scratches: Alex Chiasson, Michal Kempney, Taylor Chorney

WHERE CAN I STREAM THE CAPITALS-LIGHTNING GAME?

The Capitals-Lightning game, as well as Caps GameTime and Caps Extra, is available to stream live here through NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and is available to authenticated NBC Sports Washington subscribers on desktops, tablets, mobile devices and connected TVs anywhere in the United States.

CAPITALS-LIGHTNING OPEN THREAD

Use the comment section below to discuss the game action with other Capitals fans. 

For all the latest Caps coverage, follow Capitals Insider Tarik El-Bashir, Capitals correspondent JJ Regan and the NBC Sports Capitals account on Twitter. Be sure check out our Capitals page and NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page.

Quick Links

3 reasons why the Caps beat the Sabres

3 reasons why the Caps beat the Sabres

You may think this was an ugly four-game road trip for the Caps, but with a 3-2 win in Buffalo on Monday, Washington managed to earn five out of a possible eight points.

Here is why the Caps beat the Sabres and managed to save the road swing.

A missed high-stick (maybe) from Ovechkin

Ovechkin scored the first goal of the game in the second period as he deflected a high-shot from Christian Djoos down past goalie Chad Johnson. But did the deflection come on a high stick? The play was reviewed and the goal was ultimately upheld. According to the NHL, it was determined that "video review supported the Referee's call on the ice that Alex Ovechkin's stick was at or below the height of the crossbar when he tipped the puck into the Buffalo net."

NBC Sports Washington analyst Alan May broke the play down during the second intermission and made his case for why the NHL actually got the call wrong.

Was that a high stick? I don't know. As compelling an argument as May made, it still looks inconclusive which means the review made the right call. What surprises me is that the referee did not disallow the goal on the initial call.

Whether the review is truly inconclusive or flat out wrong, Washington was fortunate to walk away from this sequence with the goal.

MORE CAPITALS: BIZARRE SEQUENCE LEADS TO CAPS SCORING AND GETTING PENALIZED AT THE SAME TIME

A centimeter of ice

Hockey is a game of inches and it took less than an inch to put Washington up 2-0. When an Evgeny Kuznetsov shot hit off the boards and bounced back to the front of the net, it sparked a scrum next to goalie Chad Johnson. Eventually, John Carlson was able to get a swipe on the puck sending it trickling to the goal line, but Kyle Okposo was there waiting and appeared to kick it out to safety just before it crossed. A review triggered by the Situation Room, however, revealed that the puck had just barely managed to cross the goal line before Okposo got to it.

Here's the view the NHL released after the review:

Philipp Grubauer's third period

After dominating the first 40 minutes of the game and taking a 2-0 lead, Buffalo predictably made a late push in the third period with two goals to pull within one. Washington outshot the Sabres in the first and second periods, but Buffalo reversed that trend in a big way in the third as they outshot the Caps 17-6. Grubauer turned aside 15 of those shots and was impressive after barely being tested in the first two periods.

RELATED: CHECK OUT THE 3 STARS OF THE GAME FROM CAPS-SABRE