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Instant Analysis: Capitals finish off Blues in preseason shootout


Instant Analysis: Capitals finish off Blues in preseason shootout

Carter Hutton frustrated the Caps for much of the night, but it was the Caps who emerged victorious on Monday in a 2-1 shootout win.

How it happened: Hutton had a strong night in net for St. Louis turning aside 37 of the Caps' 38 shots including 12 in the opening 10 minutes of the game. The Capitals finally managed to get a goal past Hutton in the third period as Paul Carey deflected a shot from Zach Sill up into the top shelf and went on to win in the shootout thanks to goals from T.J. Oshie (of course) and Andre Burakovsky.

What it means: With the win, the Caps are now 2-1-1 in the preseason. They used their best lineup of the preseason thus far with several regulars back in the lineup. It was a good night to rebuild chemistry and experiment with players in new roles for the upcoming season.

The boys are back in town: After two rounds of cuts and with all their players back from the World Cup of Hockey, the Caps put out the best lineup we have seen to this point in the preseason. Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom, John Carlson, Dmitry Orlov and Oshie all made their preseason debuts. The Caps even had both of their goalies back with Braden Holtby and Philipp Grubauer both getting into the game.

The battle for 14: Zach Sanford and Nathan Walker look like the front runners in the competition for the 14th forward position at the start of the regular season and both played on Monday. Sanford played rigth wing on a line with Andre Burakovsky and Lars Eller. Apart from some good work on the forecheck, Sanford hesitant and was clearly still adjusting to the move to wing. Walker continued buzzing around the ice agitating every opponent he could find. While he offers little in the way of offense to the Caps, he looks like a perfect fit for a fourth-line role.

Grubauer returns: Grubauer made his preseason return for the Caps in the second period as he took over for Holtby with just over eight minutes remaining in the second period. Like Holtby, Grubauer as the third goalie on his World Cup team's depth chart and did not get any playing time in the tournament. Also like Holtby, Grubauer showed no signs of rust despite his late arrival to Caps training camp. Grubauer was not tested much, but was strong when he was as he saved all seven of the shots he faced. He also made three saves in the shootout against four shooters.

Look ahead: These two teams will meet again on Wednesday in the second leg of a home-and-home. That game, however, will not be in St. Louis, but rather will be played in the Sprint Center in Kansas City.

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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.”