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Andre Burakovsky is still a Capital and the team is pretty happy about that

Andre Burakovsky is still a Capital and the team is pretty happy about that

ARLINGTON, Va. – Andre Burakovsky stood on the ice prior to Tuesday’s game against the Ottawa Senators with his name announced to the crowd as one of the Capitals starters. The announcement was met with plenty of cheers and applause from the red-clad fans in the stands. Just two days prior, many would have predicted Burakovsky would be playing for a new team at this point.

As he stood on the ice Tuesday at Capital One Arena wearing Capitals red, however, he was exactly where he wanted to be.

“Now I'm here,” Burakovsky said. “I'm happy to remain with the Caps and just continue to play good and do my thing.”

As the NHL trade deadline approached, much of the focus surrounding the Capitals was on who they would add, not who could potentially go. But Burakovsky was one Caps player who remained on everyone’s watch list as potential trade bait.

Burakovsky has struggled to find consistency throughout his career and, in 2018-19, he has yet again suffered through an inconsistent season. He has the talent to be a top-six forward, but he has not been able to perform like one for an entire season. As a result, Burakovsky was moved throughout the lineup and has spent time both on the fourth line and as a healthy scratch.

Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan also fanned the flames for the rumor mill in January as he said about his plans for the trade deadline, “I think the only thing we're going to look for is, is there a hockey trade to be made, salary for salary, player for player in the forward group.”

That seemed like an obvious reference to Burakovsky.

But Monday’s trade deadline came and went with no trade and suddenly a player many had assumed would be on the move is staying put to be a part of the Caps’ title defense.

 “It's good for the group I think,” Brett Connolly said. “Obviously no one wants [Burakovsky] to be gone. He's a big part of our team and a big part of our locker room and a guy who fits in extremely well with the guys and has a lot of talent.”

https://twitter.com/NBCSCapitals/status/1100561326739521536

Burakovsky was adamant that he had not been paying attention to the trade rumors, but there must have been some measure of relief for him once the clock finally hit 3 p.m. and he became locked in with the organization for the remainder of the season.

Constantly thinking about whether you’re going to be shipped out to another team and another city at any given moment can take its toll.

“It just changes a little bit of the dynamic and I'd say what's going on behind the scenes a little bit with some players that were thinking maybe they would be, could be potentially leaving the team, going someplace else,” Todd Reirden said. “It happens for every player whether you're a name that's been mentioned in the media or not, the players are human. It's part of our business. The best players in the world have been traded. It's always a little bit in the back of your mind as a player and if the players say that it isn't, it's not true.”

Keeping Burakovsky likely means the Caps will stick with their third line of Burakovsky, Lars Eller and Brett Connolly going forward. That is the same third line from last year’s Cup run and it has been clicking of late.

Burakovsky has only 20 points this season, but eight of those points have come since Feb. 7. Since that time Eller also has two goals and seven points and Connolly has six goals and nine points.

With 18 games left in the season plus the playoffs, Burakovsky is going to have his off nights. But when he returned to the lineup after getting scratched in the postseason last year, Burakovsky played a huge role in the championship run with two goals in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final.

Now that he doesn’t have to think about the possibility of a trade anymore, Burakovsky can focus all of his attention and effort into getting back to that championship level for the only NHL team he has ever known.

“I'm happy to be here,” Burakovsky said, “And I think I had a lot of confidence before the trade deadline here and hopefully continue on the same path.”

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Capitals at Devils: Time, TV Channel, Live stream, how to watch

Capitals at Devils: Time, TV Channel, Live stream, how to watch

After suffering a tough defeat to the Tampa Bay Lightening, the team with the NHL's best record, on Saturday, the Capitals (42-23-7) look to get back on track on Tuesday against the struggling New Jersey Devils (27-37-9).

Although the Devils have totaled the least amount of points of any team in the Metropolitan Division, they have won two of their last three contests.

The two teams faced off just over a couple weeks ago, when Washington shutout the Devils, 3-0, on March 8. Holtby had 25 saves in the Capitals' victory.

Here's how to tune in to Capitals-Devils on Tuesday. Coverage begins at 6:30 p.m. on NBC Sports Washington.

CAPITALS AT DEVILS: HOW TO WATCH

What: Washington Capitals vs. New Jersey Devils, Game 73 of the 2018-19 NHL Regular Season

Where: Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey

When: Tuesday, March 19 at 7:30 p.m. ET

TV Channel: The Capitals at Devils game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. (Channel Link)

Live Stream: You can live stream Capitals at Devils on NBC Sports Washington’s live stream page and on the NBC Sports App.

Radio: Caps 24/7 Radio, 106.7 The Fan FM

CAPITALS AT DEVILS TV SCHEDULE

6:30 PM: Caps FaceOff Live
7:00 PM: Caps Pregame Live
7:30 PM: Capitals at Lightning Live
10:00 PM: Capitals Postgame Live
10:30 PM: Capitals Overtime Live

CAPITALS AT DEVILS INJURY REPORT

Capitals: N/A
Devils: Egor Yakovlev, upper body: TBD against Capitals. Nick Hischier, upper body: TBD against Capitals. Nathan Bastian, upper body, TBD against Capitals. Pavel Zacha, upper body, TBD against Capitals. Miles Wood, ankle, TBD against Capitals.

CAPITALS AT DEVILS SERIES HISTORY

Number of all-time meetings: 209 games

All-time series record: Caps lead the all-time series 106-90-13

Last Meeting: March 8, 2010: Caps beat Devils 3-0.

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Capitals sign heralded Virginia native Joe Snively to entry-level contract

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Capitals sign heralded Virginia native Joe Snively to entry-level contract

With a thin core of forward prospects, the Capitals looked locally and announced the signing of Herndon, Virginia native Joe Snively on Monday to a two-year, entry-level contract beginning in the 2019-20 season.

Snively, 23, is an undrafted free agent who played the last four years for Yale in the NCAA. He led the team in all four seasons. He scored 15 goals and 36 points in 33 games in his senior season. His skillset reportedly caught the eye of several other NHL clubs, but he elected to sign with his hometown team.

Snively is an alum of the Washington Little Capitals, the local youth hockey program based at MedStar Capitals Iceplex. He played junior hockey in the USHL with the Sioux City Musketeers tallying 64 points in 55 games.

“Obviously a unique situation with a local kid, which is phenomenal,” Todd Reirden said. “But it's very competitive to sign those free agents out of college, and we're fortunate to be able to add someone (who's) almost like a free player.”

Snively is not eligible to play with the Caps this season, so do not expect him to suit up in red anytime soon. Washington is at its maximum number of contracts with 50, which is why Snively’s contract is set to start for the 2019-20 season. He could, however, potentially play in Hershey on a tryout agreement.

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