Even without star Alex Ovechkin, the Washington Capitals put six goals past the Islanders on Saturday night en route to a 6-3 win, their second straight against the Isles during this three-game series. Daniel Sprong scored twice. The offense did just fine with Ovechkin taking the night off due to a lower-body injury - which is good news for the Caps as they may see him miss Tuesday's game too.
Washington now holds a narrow advantage for first in the East Division, a half-game up on the Penguins with one less loss. Two straight losses at home keeps the Islanders down at third place, two games behind the Capitals. Now the Caps return to Capital One Arena to play in front of fans for the first time in over a year with momentum behind them.
Here’s how to watch.
CAPITALS VS. ISLANDERS HOW TO WATCH
What: Washington Capitals vs. New York Islanders
Where: Capital One Arena, Washington D.C.
When: Tuesday, April 27, 2021, at 7 p.m. ET
TV Channel: Capitals vs. Islanders will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (NBC Sports channel finder)
CAPITALS VS. ISLANDERS TV SCHEDULE
6:00 PM: Capitals Pregame Live
7:00 PM: Capitals vs. Islanders
9:30 PM: Capitals Postgame Live
CAPITALS VS. ISLANDERS WHAT TO WATCH
Zdeno Chara was awarded two of coach Peter Laviolette's postgame "Karate Kid" headbands after playing in his 1,600th career game on Saturday night. The 44-year-old defenseman earned both the "Cobra Kai" headband for striking fast on offense and the "Myiagi-Do" for staying true on defense not because of his key contributions on Saturday night, but as a recognition of his accomplished career as a whole. Chara, the 13th NHL player to reach the 1,600 game milestone, has been an integral part of the Caps' third backline this season and will play an important role on Tuesday night.
Without Ovechkin on Saturday night, though, everyone stepped up offensively. Most notably was Sprong, who was moved up to the first-line left wing to replace Ovi and did so admirably with two scores. Garnet Hathaway and Nic Dowd showed how important contributions from the fourth-line are with timely goals too. Look for Evgeny Kuznetsov, who scored once and set up another two, to again be the catalyst should Ovechkin not make it in time for the triumphant return of fans to the stands in D.C.
CAPITALS VS. ISLANDERS PLAYERS TO WATCH
Capitals: T.J. Oshie, RW (17 goals, 21 assists, 38 points, 47 games): After a two-goal performance in a loss vs. Boston over the weekend, Oshie wasn’t able to continue his streak against the Islanders on Thursday. He bounced back with a beautiful team goal for the Caps' second on Saturday night, as he looks to be gelling well with new linemate Anthony Mantha.
Islanders: Anthony Beauvillier, LW (10 goals, 10 assists, 20 points in 39 games): The young Islanders winger was the only player to best Samsonov in the shootout with a fantastic dangle followed by a backhand poke-in. He was a threat all Saturday night as well, logging four shots on goal and a block. He's been hot recently (he had a four-point night in the Islanders’ win over the Rangers on Tuesday on a goal and three assists), and is looking to take down the Capitals this Tuesday.