The Capitals (6-0-0) host the Detroit Red Wings (5-0-0) at Verizon Center for a 7pm faceoff tonight and for only the second time in NHL history two teams with a 5-0-0 or better record will meet. The Capitals come off a 5-2 victory Thursday in Philadelphia over the Flyers while the Red Wings won 5-2 against the winless Columbus Blue Jackets in Detroit last night.
Four teams have started the season 7-0-0, 93-94 Maple Leafs, 94-95 Penguins, 05-06 Predators and 06-07 Sabres, none of them went on to win the Stanley Cup. Both the 93-94 Maple Leafs & 06-07 Sabres hold the record for best starts at 10-0-0.
Tomas Vokoun (5-0-0, 1.96 GAA, .939 Save pct.) will be in goal for the Capitals against Ty Conklin (1-0-0, 0.00 GAA. 1.00 Save pct.) for the Red Wings. This will be the fifth time in seven games the Caps will be playing a back up goaltender. Red Wings Captain Nicklas Lidstrom will also be playing in his 1500th regular season NHL game and only the fourth player to do so.
The Capitals played the Red Wings once last season and lost 3-2 in Detroit and will play the Red Wings a second time this season, March 19th in Detroit.
The Caps lines are expected to be: Ovechkin-Backstrom-Brouwer, Semin-Johansson-Knuble, Chimera-Laich-Ward, Hendricks-Perreault-Halpern, Alzner-Carlson, Hamrlik-Green, Schultz-Wideman.
Capitals Head Coach Bruce Boudreau did give some injury updates. Jay Beagle, who hasn’t skated since being knocked out in a fight on October 13th, is week to week and there is no timetable for his return. Boudreau said they moved it to week to week because he has missed a week and will need a week to be ready to play. Boudreau said on goalie Michal Neuvirth, “he should be ready for next week” and said he will be on the upcoming road trip. Dany Sabourin will back up Tomas Vokoun tonight.
Listen here to what Bruce Boudreau, Karl Alzner & Matt Hendricks had to say as they prepare to play also the undefeated Red Wings tonight.
Bruce Boudreau Morning Skate Audio
Karl Alzner Morning Skate Audio
Matt Hendricks Morning Skate Audio