The Washington Capitals (37-20-10, 84 points) host the Edmonton Oilers (23-36-8, 54 points) tonight for a 7pm face off. The Capitals look for their sixth consecutive win, which would match their longest win streak of the season. The Oilers, last in the west, come off a 4-1 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers last night.
Nicklas Backstrom will miss his first NHL career game tonight after playing in 341 consecutive games including regular season and playoffs. Backstrom is in a hard cast for his fractured thumb, which is not a new injury, but the cast can be removed at any time and he is expected to be on the ice tomorrow at practice. Head Coach Bruce Boudreau said the hard cast was done so the injury would stay “quiet” and so it won’t be a nagging injury for the rest of the season. Boudreau said Backstrom will probably miss a game or two.
Braden Holtby (5-2-2, 2.22 GAA, .918 Save pct.) will make his eighth career start for the Capitals. Michal Neuvirth saw a doctor this morning, then skated afterwards and will be backing up Holtby. Eric Fehr, who hasn’t played since January 14th, will be back in the line up after missing 22 games.
Mike Green didn’t skate today, Semyon Varlamov skated for about 20 minutes before practice and Tom Poti skated before, during, and after practice. Check out what Bruce Boudreau, Alex Ovechkin, Mike Knuble, Eric Fehr & Braden Holtby had to say following the morning skate today.
Bruce Boudreau Practice Audio
Alex Ovechkin Practice Audio
Eric Fehr Practice Audio
Mike Knuble Practice Audio
Braden Holtby Practice Audio
Sky Kerstein is 106.7 The FAN’s Capitals Beat Reporter and a fill-in co-host. Also you can find video recaps of every Caps game and post-game interviews on www.1067thefandc.com. You can get in touch with Sky on Facebook or via Twitter at www.twitter.com/SkyKerstein.