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Stanley Cup Playoffs 2018: Capitals to face Lightning in Eastern Conference Finals

Stanley Cup Playoffs 2018: Capitals to face Lightning in Eastern Conference Finals

The Washington Capitals and Tampa Bay Lightning are ready to hit the ice in the 2018 NHL Eastern Conference Finals to determine which team will advance to the 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Final.

The Capitals' return to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since the 1997-98 season, the same year the Capitals advanced to their first and only Stanley Cup Final. Washington exercised its playoff demons, defeating the Penguins in Game 6 to earn the right to face the Lightning.

Tampa Bay qualified for its third NHL Eastern Conference Finals in four years having defeated the Boston Bruins in Game 5 on Sunday, winning the series 4-1. The Lightning enters the Eastern Conference Finals with an 8-2 record in the 2018 NHL Playoffs. 

The Lightning, champions of the Atlantic Division, finished the 2017-18 NHL regular-season with an Eastern Conference-best 113 points (54-23-5) and enter the Eastern Conference Finals with an 8-2 record in the 2018 NHL Playoffs.  The Capitals, champions of the Metropolitan Division, finished the 2017-18 NHL regular-season with 105 points (49-26-7) and enter the Eastern Conference Finals with an 8-4 record in the 2018 NHL Playoffs.

The Capitals and Lighting met three times during the regular season. 

T.J. Oshie scored twice in the Capitals' 4-3  overtime loss to the Lightning in Tampa Bay on Monday, Oct. 9. The Capitals defeated the Lightning a month later at Capital One Arena with a 3-1 victory on Friday, Nov, 24. The regular-season series finale between the Capitals and Lightning took place at Capital One Arena on Tuesday, Feb. 24, with the Lightning scoring the 4-2 win in regulation. With the victory, the Lightning took the regular-season series from the Capitals, 1-1-1.

The Capitals and Lightning have met twice before in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, with Tampa Bay emerging victorious both occasions.  In 2003, the Lightning bounced the Capitals from the first round of the playoffs, 4-2. The Lightning then eliminated the Capitals from the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs in a four-game semifinal sweep following Washington's grueling seven-game series with the Rangers.

Game 1 2018 NHL Eastern Conference Finals will take place in Tampa, Fla., but the date and start time are still to be determined.

NBC Sports Washington will broadcast official pre- and postgame coverage of the 2018 NHL Playoffs Eastern Conference Finals with Caps Faceoff and Caps GameTime preceding Capitals vs. Lightning puck drop and Caps Extra and Caps OverTime following the end of each game. 

You can stream the entire 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs online using the NBC Sports App.

MORE CAPITALS PLAYOFF NEWS:

 

    CAPITALS EXTRA PODCAST: GAME 6

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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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    USA TODAY Sports

    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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