The Capitals (1-0-0, 2 points) host the Tampa Bay Lighting (1-1-0, 2 points) at 7pm from Verizon Center tonight. The Caps have extra motivation since the Lightning swept them out of the second round of the playoffs last season. The Capitals come off of a 4-3 overtime win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday while the Lightning fell 4-1 on the road in Boston also on Saturday.
In their last 14 regular season games vs. the Lightning at Verizon Center, the Caps are 11-2-1 and outscored the Lightning 12-4 in three regular season home games last season. Last regular season the Capitals were 4-1-1 against the Lightning.
The Caps lines are in some question because both Marcus Johansson and Mathieu Perreault came off the ice with the group that is playing tonight. Capitals Head Coach Bruce Boudreau said following the morning skate, “I’m probably going put Marcus in and take somebody out”. When talking about different options, Boudreau also mentioned that both Jeff Halpern & Jay Beagle can play center and right wing.
The only healthy player to take the extra skate was DJ King. Tomas Vokoun will be making his Capitals debut tonight. Alex Ovechkin took his option not to skate this morning and is expected to play tonight.
The lines at the morning skate looked like: King (Ovechkin is taking his option)-Backstrom-Knuble. Brouwer-Johansson-Semin, Chimera-Laich-Ward, Hendricks-Halpern-Beagle-Perreault, Alzner-Carlson, Hamrlik-Green, Schultz-Wideman.
Listen here to what Bruce Boudreau had to say following the morning skate as they try and go 2-0 tonight.
Bruce Boudreau Morning Skate Audio
Listen here to what Tomas Vokoun, John Carlson & Marcus Johansson had to say after the morning skate today as they prepare to host their division rival the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Tomas Vokoun Morning Skate Audio
John Carlson Morning Skate Audio
Marcus Johansson Morning Skate Audio