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Capitals could learn first-round opponent tonight


Capitals could learn first-round opponent tonight

So now that the Detroit Red Wings (93 points) have moved two points ahead of the Philadelphia Flyers and Boston Bruins, is the Caps’ first-round playoff opponent any clearer?

Not really. At least not until about 10 o’clock tonight. Maybe.

With three games remaining, the Flyers still hold the best chance of securing the eighth and final playoff spot. There is still a mathematical chance of the Flyers moving into the seventh spot in the East, but they’d have to win their final three games in regulation and the Islanders would need to lose their final three games in regulation.

So, for the sake of argument, let’s throw out the Islanders as a possible first-round opponent for the Caps and focus on these three teams:

Red Wings: 93 points – 39 ROWs – 2 games remaining

Flyers: 91 points – 36 ROWS – 3 games remaining

Bruins: 91 points – 37 ROWS – 2 games remaining

Here’s a quick thumbnail on each team:

RED WINGS: A win of any kind tonight against the Bruins in Boston would clinch the third spot in the Atlantic Division for the Red Wings, giving them 25 straight seasons in the playoffs. If the Red Wings win, the Capitals almost certainly (but not necessarily) face the Flyers in Round 1.

Remaining games:

Tonight: at Boston

Saturday: at NY Rangers

FLYERS: The Flyers’ magic number is four points. Any combination of the Flyers getting four points in their final three games or the Bruins forfeiting four points in their final two games would nail down the eighth spot for the Flyers. A regulation home win by the Flyers against Toronto and a regulation home loss by the Bruins against the Red Wings would clinch a playoff spot for the Flyers tonight.  If the Bruins win each of their final two games, the Flyers would need at least four points in their final three games to secure a playoff spot.

Remaining games:

Tonight: TORONTO


Sunday: at NY Islanders

BRUINS: Plain and simple, the Bruins need a regulation win tonight at home against the Red Wings if they want any chance of controlling their own destiny. The Flyers hold a game in hand on the Bruins but Boston has one more ROW than the Flyers and that is the first tiebreaker. (The Flyers won the season series, so if the two teams finish tied in points and ROWs, the Flyers are in, the Bruins are out.

Remaining games:

Tonight: DETROIT

Saturday: OTTAWA

With all of that said, here’s what we know can happen tonight:

If the Islanders get a point against the Rangers AND the Red Wings beat the Bruins in regulation AND the Flyers beat the Maple Leafs in regulation, the Capitals will face Philadelphia in Round 1 of the playoffs. (I think).

MORE CAPITALS: NHL coaches say Trotz deserves Coach of the Year

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Game 75 Capitals at Canadiens Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

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Game 75 Capitals at Canadiens Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Montreal Canadiens

Where: Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

When: 7:00 p.m. ET

How to Watch: Capitals-Canadiens will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington.

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


The Capitals (43-24-7) take on the Canadiens (27-36-12) Saturday, March 24 at 7:00 p.m. ET in Montreal.


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

6:00 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
6:30 p.m. — Caps GameTime
7:00 p.m. — Capitals at Canadiens
9:30 p.m. — Caps Extra
10:00 p.m. — Caps Overtime


You can watch the Capitals-Canadiens game on NBC Sports' live stream page.


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.

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Touted Prospect Shane Gersich signs with Caps, joins team immediately


Touted Prospect Shane Gersich signs with Caps, joins team immediately

The Caps signed University of North Dakota forward Shane Gersich, a fifth round selection in 2014 and one of the organization’s top prospects, on Friday morning, the team announced.

Gersich, a left shot who is listed at 5-11, 175-pounds, has already joined the team in Montreal, where the Caps play the Canadiens at Bell Centre on Saturday night.

His contract, which begins this season, carries an average annual value of $925,000.

It’s unclear when Gersich will make his NHL debut, but it could happen at some point in the Caps’ final eight games before the playoffs.


NBC Sports Washington has been told that the primary objective for Gersich in the coming weeks is to get his first taste of the NHL by observing—and practicing alongside—his new teammates in Washington. If the opportunity to get him into the lineup presents itself, then it’s possible he’ll suit up.

The 21-year-old just completed his third season at UND. Here are Gersich’s numbers from junior and college, courtesy of


At UND, the smooth-skating and skilled Gersich also produced this memorable goal vs. Denver:

Gersich has been assigned jersey No. 63 in Washington, according to the Caps’ website.

The addition of Gersich and subsequent subtraction of Travis Boyd, who was reassigned to Hershey on Friday morning, leaves the Caps with 14 forwards on the roster.

“I think he did a great job at rookie camp,” Caps GM Brian MacLellan said of Gersich in July. “He was one of our best players, if not the best player, at camp. Really happy about the way he’s progressed and where we picked him. I think Ross Mahoney did a great job with that pick.”