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Roy signs in Switzerland; Brouwer scores in debut


Roy signs in Switzerland; Brouwer scores in debut

News and notes as the Capitals prepare to hit the ice for their final practice before starting the 2015-16 NHL season on Saturday against the New Jersey Devils at Verizon Center (6 p.m. pregame, CSN):

Roy signs with Bern:  Center Derek Roy, who signed a professional tryout contract with the Capitals and was cut from their training camp roster on Monday, has agreed to a one-year contract with SC Bern of the Swiss National League.

Roy, 32, played well in four preseason games with the Capitals, recording one goal and one assist, but with an undefined role as a 13th forward the Caps were declined to offer him a contract.  

Roy will joining former Panthers forward Sean Bergenheim, 31, who signed with Bern on Wednesday.

Brouwer scores in debut: Former Caps right wing Troy Brouwer scored into an empty net with 17.4 seconds remaining in the St. Louis Blues’ 3-1 win over the Edmonton McDavids. Brouwer, who is wearing No. 36 for the Blues, logged 17:28 in ice time, including 1:56 on the power play and 1:28 on the penalty kill and recorded a tea-high five shots.

Meanwhile, former Caps right wing Joel Ward logged 18:29 of ice time in his season debut with the San Jose Sharks, a 5-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings. Ward saw 3:52 on the power play and 3:21 on the penalty kill. He is still wearing No. 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson.

Former Caps center Eric Fehr, meanwhile, sat out the Penguins’ season opening 3-0 loss to Dallas with an elbow injury.

RELATED SkyCam returns to CSN, Verizon Center this weekend

Former Caps defenseman Mike Green will make his Detroit Red Wings debut tonight at home against Mike Babcock and the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Brown skating: Caps right wing Chris Brown continues to skate with strength and conditioning coach Mark Nemish as he begins his recovery from what is believed to be a right hand or finger injury. … The Caps participated in a season ticket holder event at Six Flags America in Mitchellville, Md., on Thursday night. … Caps defenseman Matt Niskanen reported that his wife, Katie, and their newborn son, Charlie, are doing well. Charlie arrived over the weekend at 9 pounds and 21 ½ inches. He was named after Niskanen’s father, Charlie. … The Caps will conduct a red carpet event between 3 and 5 p.m. prior to Saturday night’s season opener. Players will take the red carpet outside the F Street entrance of Verizon Center. A live stream will be available from 4-5 p.m. on Monumental Network.  


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Stanley Cup Playoffs 2018 projection: Still too close to call in the Metropolitan Division


Stanley Cup Playoffs 2018 projection: Still too close to call in the Metropolitan Division

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are right around the corner and there is still a lot to be decided.

The Metropolitan Division is going to come right down to the wire as each team seemingly continues to win and put the pressure on the first place Capitals.

With just over two weeks remaining in the regular season, the playoff matchups for the first round of the NHL playoffs are still up in the air with only five points separating the top four teams in the Metro. Washington is in good position with a four-point cushion between themselves and the second place Pittsburgh Penguins. With both teams meeting on April 1, however, the Caps are still a long way off from clinching the division and earning home ice in the first round.


Metropolitan Division
1. Washington (93 points, 74 GP, 40 ROW)
W1. Philadelphia (88 points, 75 GP, 36 ROW)

2. Pittsburgh (89 points, 74 GP, 40 ROW)
3. Columbus (89 points, 75 GP, 36 ROW)

Atlantic Division
1. Tampa Bay (106 points, 74 GP, 45 ROW)
W2. New Jersey (82 points, 73 GP, 32 ROW)

2. Boston (100 points, 72 GP, 42 ROW)
3. Toronto (95 points, 74 GP, 37 ROW)

Still in the hunt:
Florida (81points, 72 GP, 34 ROW)


Washington has won only one out of four games against the Philadelphia Flyers this season. That's not an ideal first-round matchup for Washington, but there is still time for the Flyers to climb and overtake Columbus or Pittsburgh in the standings..

What seems unlikely to happen is for New Jersey or Florida to pass Philadelphia. While things remain close near the top of the standings, there seems to be a growing divide between the top-four teams in the Metropolitan Division and the two teams battling for the final remaining spot in the playoffs.

The Flyers may be in fourth place in the division, but they still boast a healthy six-point lead over the Devils who sit in the second wild card.

If we assume New Jersey and Florida will not be able to climb to any postseason position, but the second wild card, that makes the three most likely candidates to face Washington in the first round Pittsburgh, Columbus and Philadelphia.

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3 reasons the Caps beat the Red Wings

3 reasons the Caps beat the Red Wings

Not much separated the Washington Capitals and the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday. A late 2-on-0 goal for Brett Connolly proved to be the difference.

Here's why the Caps ultimately walked away with the 1-0 win.

A first period goalie interference call

Andreas Athanasiou thought he had given the Red Wings a first period lead, but Barry Trotz challenged the call for goalie interference. The review showed that Tyler Bertuzzi clipped Philipp Grubauer in the head with an elbow right before the shot went in. Given how long it took the Caps to get going in this game, it is fair to say an early deficit would have been hard to overcome.


Killing off a full two-minute 5-on-3

Two man advantages are hard to kill. Killing off a full two-minutes at 5-on-3, that's a tall task. With the game still scoreless in the second period, T.J. Oshie and Lars Eller were both assessed penalties giving Detroit two-full minutes at 5-on-3. The Red Wings managed four shots on goal, but Washington was able to successfully kill off the penalty and keep the game scoreless.

Philipp Grubauer

There were few players who had strong efforts on Tuesday, but Grubauer was phenomenal. Even when the game felt sleepy in the first two periods, Detroit still managed 28 shots on goal, all of which were turned aside by the German netminder. When Washington finally took the lead in the third, the Red Wings woke up and began pushing the offense, but Grubauer was in the zone at that point and could not be beaten. His best save came in the third period when he stared down a breakaway from Athanasiou and extended the pad to deny the shot.