Quick Links

Capitals make final cuts, set opening night roster

Capitals make final cuts, set opening night roster

The Capitals made their final cuts on Monday morning, releasing defenseman Aaron Ness and center Zach Sill.

Ness and Sill must clear waivers before being assigned to Hershey.

The cuts set the Capitals’ opening night roster at 22 players—13 forwards, seven defensemen and two goalies. The moves also mean that rookie Zach Sanford has made the team.


For much of the offseason, it was believed that the Capitals would carry 23 players, including a 14th forward spot to be used to accommodate a deserving young player. That plan, however, changed as camp unfolded.

“We’re planning to probably go with 22, not 23 as I’ve said,” Coach Barry Trotz said after Sunday’s 4-0 win over the Islanders. “That’s good for everybody down there [in Hershey]. It will keep the competition and heat on them.”

Sanford, meantime, entered camp as a favorite to snag one of the final forward spots. Then the Boston College product backed up the potential coaches saw in him with some production, scoring a pair of goals in five games. And that clinched it.

On Sunday—the Capitals’ final exhibition before opening in the regular season Thursday in Pittsburgh—Sanford played left wing on a line with center Lars Eller and right wing Marcus Johansson. That’s likely going to be the third forward combination when the season begins.

“Based on his play, I don’t know if he will be semi-regular,” Trotz said, asked he expects Sanford to dress regularly. “I think he’s [a] regular, the way he’s played. That’s good on him, being a young guy who’s playing well.”

Here’s the Capitals' current roster:


— Backstrom, Beagle, Burakovsky, Connolly, Eller, Johansson, Kuznetsov

Oshie, Ovechkin, Sanford, Williams, Wilson and Winnik.


— Alzner, Carlson, Chorney, Niskanen, Orlov, Orpik and Schmidt.


— Grubauer and Holtby. 

Quick Links

3 stars of the game: A lethargic loss in Philadelphia


3 stars of the game: A lethargic loss in Philadelphia

Playing three games in four days takes a toll on even the fittest athletes, and it was their sluggish start that doomed the Capitals in a 6-3 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. 

After being noncomittal about his starting goalie all weekend, Coach Barry Trotz put Philipp Grubauer in net. Grubauer ended up making 29 saves on 34 shots. Offensively, the Caps got goals from Alex Ovechkin, Chandler Stephenson, and John Carlson. Carlson's third period goal cut the Flyers' lead to two with a little over three minutes to go, but a Jakub Voracek empty-netter a few moments later was the nail in the coffin. 

Here are your three stars from the game: 

1. Travis Boyd had the play of the game for the Capitals. Boyd carried the puck into the Flyer's zone, cut through multiple defenders and fired a slick shot to a streaking Ovechkin, who burried the puck in the back of the net. Check it out: 

Not only was the play nice on its own, but it was Boyd's first NHL point. Not a bad way to get it. 

2. Shayne Gostisbehere​ got the Flyers going with his goal in the first period. The defenseman had one goal on five shots along with being an intimidating force in the defensive zone. After going six weeks without scoring, today's goal was Gostisbehere's second goal in three games. 

3. Wayne Simmonds was the best offensive player on the ice on Sunday, scoring twice - both in the final period. It was the 22nd and 23rd goals of the season for the 29-year-old winger. It was also the first multi-goal game for Simmonds since Opening Night, when he had two against San Jose. 

The Caps hit the ice next on Tuesday, when they welcome the Dallas Stars to the Capital One Center. 

Quick Links

Game 72 Capitals at Flyers Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

Game 72 Capitals at Flyers Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Philadelphia Flyers

Where: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, Pa.

When: 5:00 p.m. ET

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

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


The Capitals (41-23-7) take on the Flyers (36-25-11) Sunday, March 18 at 5:00 p.m. ET in Philadelphia.


The Capitals-Flyers 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)

4:00 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
4:30 p.m. — Caps GameTime
5:00 p.m. — Capitals at Flyers
7:30 p.m. — Caps Extra
8:00 p.m. — Caps Overtime
9:00 p.m. — Caps in 30


The Capitals-Flyers 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.


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.