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Caps stay hot with win over skidding Montreal


Caps stay hot with win over skidding Montreal

WASHINGTON – Post-game analysis of the Capitals’ 3-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens in Washington on Saturday:

How it happened: Evgeny Kuznetsov deflected a Nate Schmidt shot into the net in the first period. Jay Beagle scored what would be the game winner in the second off of a nice drop pass from Tom Wilsonand Jason Chimera added an insurance tally in the third. Kuznetsov's goal was his 11th of the season, tying the career-high mark he set last year in 80 games. This is only Kuznetsov's 34th game of the season.

His best Kuznetsov impression: One of Kuznetsov's more impressive moves is a forehanded drop pass that leaves defensemen and goalies baffled. Wilson did his best impression of the move in the second period to set-up Beagle's goal. As he skated wide to Condon's left, he went forehand and dropped it perfectly for Beagle who finished the play off with the goal a beautiful wrister that beat Condon glove side.

Oscar-worthy performance: P.K. Subban drew the ire of the Caps faithful late in the second period when he drew a slashing penalty on Nicklas Backstrom. As Subban went to collect the puck along the boards, Backstrom came over to challenge and gave him a shove in the back. Subban immediately clutched his face and fell to the ice. Replays show that Backstrom never touched Subban's face. The referee was fooled and called Backstrom for slashing. Fans serenaded Subban with boos the rest of the game. In what have been an acknowledgement of the blown call, Paul Byron of Montreal was called for embellishment in the third period.

Like father, like son: We all knew Wilson was tough, but to beat a man in front of his own family.... In the first period, Tom Wilson dropped the gloves with Montreal's Jarred Tinordi after the two were chirping at one another and Tinordi gave Wilson a shove in the back. If the name Tinordi sounds familiar, that's because his father, Mark Tinordi, was a former Cap for five seasons in the 90s. Mark was in the stands with his family watching his son play. That probably was not what he was hoping to see, though it should not have been totally unexpected given that Jarred has been in 13 fights at the NHL level (including preseason). Mark was in 72 fights over his career.

Look ahead: The Caps will play a home-and-home with the Sabres starting in Buffalo on Mon. Dec. 28. They return to Washington for the rematch on Dec. 30 and then close out the 2015 in Carolina on Dec. 31.

RELATED: LOOK: Fan propositions Tom Wilson with suggestive sign

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3 things to watch in Caps vs. Panthers

3 things to watch in Caps vs. Panthers

The Capitals play their last home game of October on Friday as they host the Florida Panthers (7 p.m., NBC Sports Washington). Here’s what you need to watch.

Dmitrij Jaskin is back in

Todd Reirden has made one adjustment to the lineup for Friday’s game, putting Dmitrij Jaskin back in on the fourth line in place of Nathan Walker. Jaskin has yet to record a point since joining the Capitals, but that has a lot to do with where he was coming from.

“This team is based on being creative and it's probably something that I missed in the last few years,” Jaskin said following Friday’s morning skate.

In St. Louis, Jaskin was coached by Mike Yeo and, before him, Ken Hitchcock. Both coaches preach a hard-nosed offensive style based more on effort and being defensively responsible than skill. Coming to a team like Washington then, a team that encourages skill and creativity on offense, is a pretty dramatic change.

Jaskin has played a very safe style since coming into the lineup. It’s good to be defensively responsible, but not if it completely chokes the life out of the offense. Jaskin is hardly generating any offense at all thus far since coming to Washington.

After a few more practices, can it finally spark some skill and creativity from Jaskin?

Can the Caps get the bottom six back on track?

The Caps have gotten only two goals in six games from their bottom six and both came in the team’s blowout opening win against Boston. The third and fourth lines generated some chances on Wednesday, but afterward, Reirden stressed that the team needed to see more production from its depth forwards.

“We've got to continue to get scoring depth wise if we want to have success in this league,” he said. “That's where everything's headed is you can't rely on your top guys to come through for you every night and we'll continue to focus on finding the right chemistry with that third and fourth line to be able to give us some added offense there as well.”

Florida could provide a good opportunity for those players to get some points on the board.

Starting goalie Roberto Luongo is out with an injury and James Reimer will get the start on Friday. In three games, Reimer has a GAA of 3.62 and save percentage of .885.

As a team, the Panthers currently rank 24th in goals against per game with 3.50.

Two teams in need of a win

Florida is still searching for its first win of the season with a 0-2-2 record. It is still early, but this is a Panthers team with playoff aspirations and you don’t want to dig yourself in too deep a hole to start or it becomes very difficult to dig out.

The Caps, meanwhile, will be playing in their final home game of October. They leave Saturday for Vancouver to kick-off a three-game Western Canada trip. They then will face the Canadiens in Montreal on Nov. 1 before finally returning home.

Washington’s next home game will not come until Nov. 3. That makes Friday’s game a big one for the Caps as they try to secure two points before hitting the road.

“It's definitely a big game,” Reirden said. “We want to build on some of the things we were able to accomplish last game. It's difficult anytime you go out west with time changes and different stuff. We know that [Florida is] going to be a desperate team that hasn't had the start that they want and they're talented so it's an important game for us to go on the road on a winning note.”


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The Ovechkin's posts family photo with newborn son Sergei


The Ovechkin's posts family photo with newborn son Sergei

Capitals star Alex Ovechkin had arguably the best summer of anyone.

In June, the Capitals won their first ever Stanley Cup, and in August, Ovechkin and his wife Nastya Ovechkina welcomed their first kid.

Although Ovechkin's son Sergei is only a couple months old, the public has not seen much of him. Both Nastya and Alex posted pictures on Instagram of Sergei's foot when he was born, but neither had posted anything of him since.

In honor of Sergei's two month birthday, Nastya posted a picture of the three of them, with Alex holding Sergei in his hands. 

While it is hard to see much of Sergei, this is one of the first pictures of the couple with their newborn present. 

What a happy family!