VranaSmile

SHOOT SCOAR SMILE

Since leaving Caps training camp, Jakub Vrana has dominated in Sweden.

Vrana, 18, kicked off his SHL season last week with a two-point night, scoring a goal and an assist against Leksand on Wednesday. Three days later, he was back at it again with his linemates Jeff Taffe and Jacob Micflikier (both former Hershey Bears), scoring a goal in Linköping’s convincing 5-1 victory.

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wojtek-wolski

Photo: Championat.com

A few years ago, Polish-born forward Wojtek Wolski came to the Washington Capitals as a reclamation project. Instead of becoming a permanent member in the team’s top six, he became a permanent denizen of Adam Oates’s doghouse and left for the KHL. Since then, he has had some success with Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod.

And by success I mean setting insane records. Today Wolski set the KHL record for the fastest hat trick ever. He did it pretty fast.

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evgeny-kuznetsov-preseason-goal

Photo: Alex Brandon

Washington Capitals top prospect Evgeny Kuznetsov has struggled during much of the preseason. He’s blown assignments, been the cause of several opponents’ goals, and looked generally lost at center. On Sunday, Barry Trotz moved Kuznetsov back to wing, the position he’s played for years in Russia. Kuznetsov looked far more relaxed.

Playing on the fourth line with Chris Brown and Liam O’Brien, Kuznetsov immediately scored in the first period of their final preseason game.

The goal took poise and patience.

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There is debate about what was the worst moment in Canadian history. Some say it was the Halifax Explosion of 1917 that killed an estimated 2000 people. More say it was when Michael J Fox left Edmonton to come to the States in 1979. I’d have been in that second camp, but this moment from Friday’s Penticton Vees game in BC might change my mind.

Or at least it would have, until that dang neighborly Canadian crowd saved the day.

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My friend Steven Frietas did some cool stuff at the preseason game against the Flyers the other night. By now you’ve already seen Amanda Bowen’s beautiful photos, but now please check out some of that same action in slow motion.

My favorite spot is Niskanen, without a stick, smushing R.J. Umberger (I think) into the glass.

Enjoy, and please follow Steven on the Twitters; he’s hilarious.

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Crash Course on Corsi, PDO, and Advanced Stats (Video)

It’s been a big summer for hockey stats. Hoping to improve their hockey intelligence, lots of teams have snatched up numbers-based hockey writers for the 2014-15 season. Even mainstream writers and pundits seem to be more open to some of the so-called advanced stats (which I don’t think is a good label).

Still, some people are still skeptical, or at least unclear, about the new stats. That makes sense; the community hasn’t always done a good job separating the jargon from the meaning those stats are conveying. To that purpose, I’ve made this short video to explain, visually, what Corsi, Fenwick, PDO, and Zone Starts actually mean.

If you’re not on board with the fancystats, this video could help. Consider this a crash course on the basics. Please feel free to share this video wherever you want– particularly wherever folks might get be getting confused.

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These NBC4 Promos Lack #NatriolesMagictude

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Some will say that baseball has divided the region. The Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals, who are in different leagues and don’t even play each other lest they both make the fall classic, seem to be mutually exclusive fandoms.

At least, that’s the premise of NBC 4’s latest promos. These videos, completely bereft of #NatriolesMagictude, depict a DMV split into two factions, each side leery of the other. The schism affects the playground, dog walks, even the TV room.

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Burra should get used to this. (Photo: Geoff Burke)

Andre Burakovsky continues to be a god. He’s been the Washington Capitals best player by far during training camp. Heading into Thursday night, Burakovsky already had a game-winning goal and a game-winning assist. Now he’s added a highlight-reel goal.

Describing it is simple: Burakovsky took the puck from the Caps defensive zone, skated through the neutral zone solo, and scored on two Flyers defenders. The execution was maybe not so easy.

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Vrana during an interview with local newspaper Corren before the game.

Washington Capitals prospect Jakub Vrana scored two points in his first game back with Linkoping after being cut from Caps training camp. Vrana, who was dominant in the Champions League action before coming over to North America, got a goal and an assist as his Linkoping defeated Filip Forsberg’s former club, Leksand.

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Madison Bowey Scores a Career-High Five Points

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One Capitals top prospect Madison Bowey added another huge WHL game to his resume. After he collected three assists in a power play show in his first game back in junior, Bowey scored career-high five points (two goals, three assists) in Kelowna’s dramatic 7-5 victory over Vancouver that was broadcast around Western Canada on Shaw TV.

Both of Bowey’s goals came shorthanded. All three of his assists were recorded while the Rockets were on the power play.

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