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The Tampa Bay Lightning scored a garbage goal with three seconds left in the game to make it 4-3. Jon Cooper called time out. The Lightning kept their net empty. That wasn’t wise.

Nicklas Backstrom won the face-off, which Alex Ovechkin immediately shot into the net with under a half second left.

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Photo: Kyle Mace of Chocolate Hockey

Steve Oleksy, stuck in Hershey due to Washington’s defensive depth, scored one of the biggest goals of his career Sunday, well at least in my opinion. Thirty-nine seconds into the first period, Binky sneaked into the slot and scored Hershey’s 2014 Teddy Bear Toss goal.

Oleksy’s tally unleashed 17,295 stuffed animals which were thrown onto the ice by fans at Giant Center. All of the bears will be donated to needy children, which is so awesome.

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orlov-breakaway

On Saturday, while most of the Caps roster was in New Jersey, a few injured players including Dmitry Orlov got in some extra work at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. We know this because the Caps hosted a blood drive at Kettler that day, and a bunch of fans took photos and videos of the players practicing.

Orlov, whose surgically repaired wrist has kept him out of action for seven months (one month longer than the doctor’s worst-case scenario), started practicing with the team on November 17th in a no-contact jersey. Three weeks later, according to this video from the Brouwer Rangers’ Instagram page, it appears Orlov may finally be close to returning.

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You guys, I’ve got some incredible news to share. Jay Beagle has played only 21 games this season, but tonight he tied his career high in goals with four. He’s also more than halfway to his career season high of 9 points, which he set last season.

The (un)dynamic fourth-line winger has scored two goals in his last two games. He also did this a few weeks ago. Suffice it to say: Beagle’s playing unleashed. Let’s throw him a bone (wink) and take a look at his latest goal.

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As a kid, Braden Holtby played forward before turning into a goaltender full-time as a teenager. That’s where Holtby gets his strong stickhandling ability from and that’s why, dammit, he’s going to score a goal someday.

Saturday night against the Devils, Holtby– after making 33 saves and playing generally amazing– decided to take a pot shot at New Jersey’s empty net with the Caps clinging to a two-goal lead.

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We’re officially 29 days away from the Winter Classic. It’s time to chug vitamin water and start running 6-minute miles on the treadmill because that’s the only way you’re going to be able to physically handle the crush of Winter Classic promotional material coming your way. On this boring Wednesday night, NBC released a new commercial, the Caps wore their Winter Classic pants, and season-ticket holders got their awesomely designed tickets for the event.

It’s okay to be super excited– in fact, the way things are going this season, this might be the only thing worth being excited for all year.

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John Carlson’s First Ever Two-Goal Game (GIF)

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Photo: Rob Carr

Playing against the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday night, Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson had one of his most electrifying games as a pro offensively, tallying his first ever multi-goal game. Unfortunately, he was also on the ice for all three of Vancouver’s power-play goals, which (womp womp) negated his awesomeness a bit (or you can just blame Orpik).

Let’s look at the goals anyways.

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Brooks Laich’s Highlight-Reel Goal (GIF)

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After a 269-day goalless streak, Washington Capitals forward Brooks Laich has finally found the net again and, guys, it was dead sexy.

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Ovechkin’s parents Mikhail and Tatyana pose with the orphans (Photo: Pavel Lysenkov/Sovetsky Sport)

Caps captain Alex Ovechkin has never shied away from charitable work. From participating in the Caps’ Make-A-Wish efforts to playing in charity preseason games annually in Russia, Ovi never misses an opportunity to help those less fortunate. Plus, we can’t forget his date with Ann earlier this season. But some of his secretive charity efforts behind the scenes are just now becoming public.

Pavel Lysenkov of Sovetsky Sport has revealed that Alex Ovechkin has quietly been supporting as many as seven orphanages in different regions of Russia.

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mike-green-surprise-visit

Recently, Iraq and Afghanistan veteran Bobby Hicks returned home to Virginia. After fighting in two major wars, life was supposed to be easy for Hicks and his family of Caps fans. Instead, he was diagnosed with Leukemia and faces an uncertain future. On top of that, his HVAC and water heater gave out (same thing happened to me last year and it’s the worst) just as winter began. The family reached out to the Michael & Son Cares Program.

And that’s where this sad story gets a get a little bit sunnier.

“When the Hick’s family’s story was brought to my attention, I knew we had to help,” said Basim Mansour, proud son and owner of Michael & Son Services. “Here’s a guy who gave so much for his country and asked so little in return; I not only wanted to help them with their home repairs, I wanted to do something really special for Bobby.”

Initially, Mansour wanted to bring Hicks and his family to a Capitals game for a special surprise. Instead, with Hicks unable to leave the hospital due to his intensive treatment, Mansour brought the Capitals to him.

Our team is just like that.

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