Photos: J.R. Ebling
On Thursday, the Washington Capitals held their annual season ticket holder party at Six Flags America. Many amazing things happened, such as TJ Oshie meeting TJ Yoshie for the first time.
Here’s another wild story.
Photos: Amanda Bowen
The Capitals closed out the 2015-16 preseason with a dominating 6-2 win over the New York Islanders on Sunday evening. The Isles iced their B-squad players, making this final game an easy win for the home team.
The stars of the night were Ovechkin-Kuznetsov-Oshie line and Washington’s special teams, as you’ll see below.
Photo: Amanda Bowen
When TJ Oshie took the ice for the Caps’ final preseason game against the New York Islanders, he sported a shiner under his left eye and a cut on the bridge of his nose. His battle wounds were courtesy of Adam McQuaid’s fists on Friday night. McQuaid is the veteran of 43 NHL fights.
Photo: Amanda Bowen
Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin called TJ Oshie a “tough customer” after TJ’s fight with enforcer Adam McQuaid Friday. Ovechkin was impressed with how his new linemate could dish out punishment and take it as well.
“I see a couple good hits in his face,” Ovechkin said to NHL.com’s Katie Brown.
After reviewing photos from RMNB’s Amanda Bowen and social media, I can confirm that Ovechkin saw those “good hits in [Oshie’s] face.” Ovechkin and the Bruins’ Chris Kelly had front-row seats to the fight. Together they watched, arms wrapped around each other like they were taking Homecoming photos.
My favorite part was when the scraps resulted in three players from each team in the sin bin. TJ Oshie, Tom Wilson and Liam O’Brien taunted two raging Bruins, Kevan Miller and Adam McQuaid, as David Pastrnak watched from behind them. It was one of those moments where you really wish they had a mic down there to record the conversations between detainees. They went on until the ref entered the Bruins box to have them sit down.
The game was the perfect introduction to the sport for the first timers who attended with me. Four fights, goals to tie it at one, three-on-three overtime, and a shootout win. You can’t get much better than that.
Here is what I captured in my first visit back to Verizon Center this season.
Photo: Ricky Carioti
The Washington Post’s photography department runs the WP’s Instagram account, and it’s a mandatory follow (just like ours). On Thursday, the Post posted a sports image for throwback Thursday. The photo was of Alex Ovechkin after an outdoor practice we covered a long time ago.
“Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin faces the media while preparing for the 2011 Winter Classic on December 29, 2010 in Chevy Chase, MD,” the caption says. The photograph was taken by Ricky Carioti.
It’s a brilliant photo.
Photos: Amanda Bowen
On Tuesday afternoon, the Capitals celebrated all twelve months of the year with Homeward Trails’ Animal Rescue dogs for the 2015-16 Caps Canine Calendar. Each month had its own silly theme based on a season or holiday, with the players and dogs dressed accordingly.
Here’s a quick preview: Caps roomies Tom Wilson and Michael Latta celebrated Valentine’s Day by putting roses in their mouth for February; Braden Holtby wore a sombrero and poncho for Cinco de Mayo; and Karl Alzner dressed in a skin-tight skeleton costume with his dogs for Halloween in October.
January models Andre Burakovsky and Marcus Johansson had problems. By the time the photographer was ready for them, the puppies they were carrying fell asleep in their arms. Adorable, but improvisation was needed. The New Years theme became “falling asleep before midnight.” After two rounds of throwing balloons, the crew tried popping confetti champagne bottles that startled the two pups awake in the middle of the take. The Swedes handled it well: with many puppy kisses.
After the main sets, the photographer did sessions with the player families that wanted their own set of photos. #SquadGoals.
Prepare yourself for enormous amounts of adorable. We can’t wait to buy this calendar.
Photo: Katie Brown
On Sunday, RMNB’s Chris Gordon asked 20-year-old center Andre Burakovsky why he moved out of Tom Wilson and Michael Latta’s bachelor pad.
“I’m getting older and more mature,” Burakovsky said.
On Monday, Burakovsky showed off this newfound sophistication by putting Philipp Grubauer’s mask on in the locker room.
Tuesday night, a third of the Caps roster traveled up to Boston for the team’s second preseason game in consecutive nights. Despite a third period goal from Nate Schmidt, the Caps lost 2-1 due to a David Pastrňák one-timer 12 seconds into overtime.
Meanwhile, Tom Wilson – a night after scoring the game-winning goal against Carolina – was back at Verizon Center, but this time to see tiny tattooed pop singer, Ed Sheeran, in concert.
Last year the Washington Capitals installed a display at Verizon Center honoring all the hat tricks scored at their home barn since 2008. It was a fantastic idea, especially featuring fans’ hats that had actually been thrown on the ice in celebration. The Caps expanded on that this offseason.