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A tale of two perspectives: Leafs don't see anything wrong with Kadri's hit on Ovechkin

A tale of two perspectives: Leafs don't see anything wrong with Kadri's hit on Ovechkin

The Capitals were a bit displeased with the monster hit Nazem Kadri delivered to Alex Ovechkin in the first period of Game 5. From Toronto’s perspective, however, they didn’t see anything wrong with it.

Late in the first period, Kadri delivered a hip-check to Ovechkin that hit him square in the knee. Ovechkin went flying and lay on the ice for several moments. He was eventually helped off while not putting any weight on his left leg. You can see the play in the video above.

The hit sparked an immediate debate across the hockey universe as to whether it was dirty or not.

“I thought he got rid of the puck and I just kind of tried to get a piece of him and he tried to get out of the way,” Kadri said after the game. “It's not like I stuck my knee out or got my arms high or anything like that. It happened pretty quick. From what I saw, I thought it was okay.”

RELATED: 3 Key Observations: Williams proves 'clutch' exists

Kadri said that while he was trying to hit Ovechkin, he certainly was not trying to injure him.

“It's a pretty tender area so that could be extensive,” Kadri said. “You don't want that to be an extended injury.”

“At the end of the day,” Kadri added, “I'm cheating my teammates if I don't try to get a piece of him because he's dumping the puck in and going around our defenseman. At the end of the day, I've got no choice. I've got to try and hold him up and save my defensemen.”

Toronto head coach Mike Babcock agreed.

While Kadri easily could have been given a five-minute major for clipping, he was instead assessed a two-minute minor for tripping. Even that was too much in Babcock's mind.

“It's interesting, [Barry Trotz] probably thought there should have been a major, I thought there should have been no penalty,” Babcock said. “That's the beauty of the playoffs. The other night when [Roman Polak's] done for the year, our bench thought it should have been a major and they thought it should be no penalty. That's kind of the playoffs so we try to get someone in between who's probably more reasonable than a coach.”

Luckily for the Caps, Ovechkin returned for the start of the second period. Though Kadri was glad to see Ovechkin was not seriously hurt, that does not mean he was all that thrilled to see him back for the second period.

Said Kadri, “I'm not quite sure I was happy to see him come back on the ice.”

MORE CAPITALS: Justin 'Clutch' Williams wins it in OT

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Capitals vs. Jets Game 63: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to watch

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Capitals vs. Jets Game 63: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to watch

Coming off a huge 5-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Capitals face the Winnipeg Jets for the first time this season. 

The Capitals win against rival Penguins sealed their first place slot in the Metro Division. In addition to the recent win, the Capitals are still riding off of Alex Ovechkin’s historic 700th goal against the New Jersey Devils. 

The last time the Capitals played the Jets they won 3-2 in overtime. Interestingly enough, this game in March of 2018 was also when Ovechkin secured his 600th career goal. 

Here is everything you need to know about the Tuesday night game, which takes place at 7:00 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Washington. 

CAPITALS VS. JETS GAME 63: HOW TO WATCH
What: Washington Capitals vs. Winnipeg Jets
Where: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
When: Tuesday, February 25 at 7:00 p.m. ET
TV Channel: The Capitals vs. Jets game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder Link)
Live Stream: You can live stream Capitals vs. Jets 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 VS. JETS TV SCHEDULE
6:00 PM: Caps Faceoff Live
6:30 PM: Caps Pregame Live
7:00 PM: Capitals vs. Jets (LIVE)
9:30 PM: Caps Postgame Live 
10:00 PM: Caps Overtime Live
10:00 PM: D.C. Sports Live

CAPITALS vs. JETS INJURY REPORT:
Capitals: No injuries 
Jets: Josh Morrissey, upper body, day-to-day
Luca Sbisa, injured reserve
Bryan Little, injured reserve 


CAPITALS vs. JETS PLAYERS TO WATCH
Alex Ovechkin, F, Capitals (42-17-59): Last week Ovechkin became the eighth member of the 700 club as he scored his 42nd goal of the season against the New Jersey Devils. Though Ovechkin has certainly secured his place in Capitals and NHL history, it will be interesting to see him continue to dominate this season. 

Patrik Laine, RW, Jets (26-33-59): Laine has been hot recently, particularly last Thursday when the Jets beat the Senators. Laine two assists and two goals. 

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Who won the NHL trade deadline in the Metropolitan Division?

Who won the NHL trade deadline in the Metropolitan Division?

The NHL trade deadline has come and gone and the Metropolitan Division was very busy. How did they all do? It's report card time.

Here's a look at how each team in the Metropolitan Division did and how things stack up with the deadline now in the rearview mirror.

NOTE: I am defining "deadline deals" as any trade in the month of February and I am also only including trades with a significant impact on the NHL roster.

Carolina Hurricanes

Trades

  • Acquired prospect Joey Keane from the New York Rangers in exchange for forward Julien Gauthier
  • Acquired forward Vincent Trocheck from the Florida Panthers in exchange for forwards Erik Haula, Lucas Wallmark and prospects Eetu Luostarinen and Chase Priskie
  • Acquired defenseman Sami Vatanen from the New Jersey Devils in exchange for prospects Janne Kuokkanen, Fredrik Claesson and a fourth-round pick
  • Acquired defenseman Brady Skjei from the New York Rangers in exchange for a first-round pick

Thoughts: Caroline robbed Florida. They gave up two players on expiring contracts and two mid-level prospects for a really good Trocheck who the Panthers soured on for some reason. That was one of the best trades of the deadline, but I am really low on what Carolina did overall because the big need for this team was goaltending and that was even before both Petr Mrazek and James Reimer got injured. The news Monday is that both goalies are out with "longer term" injuries and Carolina did nothing to address it, other than add two defensemen. When you look at what it took to pry Robin Lehner away from Chicago, it sure seems like that's a deal the Hurricanes could have gotten done if they had used the assets they gave up to acquire Skjei and Vatanen. Maybe when you win a game with a Zamboni driver in net, you begin to think defense is more important than goaltending.

Columbus Blue Jackets

Trades

  • Acquired a seventh-round draft pick from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for forward Markus Hannikainen

Thoughts: The injury to Seth Jones is a backbreaker. This team could not afford to throw assets around just to make the playoffs when there is no real hope of any deep run and it didn't really make sense to sell either considering what the team has battled through just to stay in contention. They were smart to stand pat.

New Jersey Devils

Trades

  • Acquired prospect David Quenneville and a second-round draft pick from the New York Islanders in exchange for defenseman Andy Greene
  • Acquired prospect Nolan Foote and a first-round draft pick from the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for forward Blake Coleman
  • Acquired a conditional fifth-round pick from the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for forward Wayne Simmonds
  • Acquired prospects Janne Kuokkanen, Fredrik Claesson and a fourth-round pick from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for defenseman Sami Vatanen

Thoughts: The Devils got a pretty decent haul for what they were willing to part with. They are in a weird position where they are a few years into the rebuild meaning this is not exactly a strip it down scenario. New Jersey now could potentially have three first-round draft picks in 2020 and they still kept Kyle Palmieri.

New York Islanders

Trades

  • Acquired defenseman Andy Greene form the New Jersey Devils in exchange for prospect David Quenneville and a second-round pick.
  • Acquired forward J-G Pageau from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for a conditional first, second and conditional third-round pick.

Thoughts: A fading Islanders team desperately needed to add some offense. Pageau is a really good player, but general manager Lou Lamoriello paid a king's ransom for him. Sure, they extended him, but that is still a high-price. Also, while Greene fills a need for defense in the wake of the injury to Adam Pelech, it sure seems like the Islanders could have used more of a puck-mover.

New York Rangers

Trades

  • Acquired forward Julien Gauthier from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for prospect Joey Keane
  • Acquired a first-round pick from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for defenseman Brady Skjei

Thoughts: The Rangers had one goal at the deadline and that was to dump salary. They will have $7.5 million worth of dead space on the cap next season so saying, hey this team is close to a playoff spot, we can let it ride! was not really an option. Moving Skjei was a surprise as he is only 25 years old, but they had to do something after deciding to re-sign Chris Kreider.

Philadelphia Flyers

Trades

  • Acquired forward Nate Thompson from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a fifth-round draft pick
  • Acquired forward Derek Grant from the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for AHL forward Kyle Criscuolo

Thoughts: The Flyers are one of the hottest teams in the NHL so perhaps they made the right call by not making any major moves, but I don't think the additions of Grant or Thompson really make them that much better. If you think they were already better than Pittsburgh and Washington OK, then they made the right move with only minor tweaks. To me, I still see them as being a step behind both teams atop the division. The Flyers are red-hot right now, but in a seven-game series, I still give the edge to their Metro rivals.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Trades

  • Acquired forward Jason Zucker from the Minnesota Wild in exchange for forward Alex Galchenyuk, prospect Calen Addison and a first-round draft pick
  • Acquired forward Patrick Marleau from the San Jose Sharks for a third-round draft pick
  • Acquired forwards Evan Rodrigues and Connor Sheary from the Buffalo Sabres for forward Dominik Kahun

Thoughts: The trade for Zucker was a great, great move. He is a top-line player and the fact that he is signed for another three years after this season takes the sting out of having to give up a first-round pick and a top prospect. But it is possible to tinker too much with a roster and that's what I think the Penguins did here. For a team that has dealt with so many injuries, they may not care about adding too many bodies, but the Penguins added four forwards in less than a month. What are the odds all four are able to fit seamlessly into the lineup?

Washington Capitals

Trades

  • Acquired defenseman Brenden Dillon from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for a second and a third-round draft pick
  • Acquired forward Ilya Kovalchuk from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a third-round draft pick

Thoughts: The team needed scoring depth which Kovalchuk should theoretically provide, though his role in Washington will be much closer to what it was in Los Angeles than in Montreal. Dillon is a good, physical defenseman who makes the defense better, but the biggest hole on the roster was right defense and the Caps did not address that. If the team enters the playoffs with Nick Jensen or Radko Gudas playing a top-four role, what was the point?

And the winner is....

Pittsburgh

The Zucker deal makes them the team to beat from the division heading into the playoffs. They did more than they needed to on Monday and some of those deals will turn out to be busts. But overall, they bolstered their top line and look just as dangerous offensively even with the loss of Jake Guentzel. If they go on to win the Cup, the trade for Zucker will prove to be one of the pivotal moves of the entire season.

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