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Photo: @WashCaps

With the Caps back from the all-star break, a third of the roster went on team-building event on Wednesday. Justin Williams, Braden Holtby, Marcus Johansson, Philipp Grubauer, Brooks Laich, Brooks Orpik, John Carlson, and Nicklas Backstrom braved a torrential downpour to take a private tour of The White House.

I’d give you more details, but the Caps didn’t share any. That’s okay; we’ve got social media.

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brooks-orpik-injured

Photo: Bruce Bennett

Thirty-five-year-old Brooks Orpik, the Capitals second highest-paid defenseman, will be sidelined for “a long time.” This information comes via NBCSN’s Pierre McGuire. Orpik has missed the Capitals’ last 14 games due to a lower body injury, which the team had previously characterized as “nothing serious.” Over that time, the Capitals have shot into first place in the division but also seen their 5v5 possession dip. Orpik had been skating nearly 20 minutes a night with John Carlson.

Orpik was injured against the Detroit Red Wings on November 10, leaving the game early in the second period.

During Wednesday’s rivalry night game between the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens, the NBCSN crew– Doc Emrick, Eddie Olczyk, and McGuire –began a short conversation about the Capitals, which led to the dropping of the news by McGuire.

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Photo: Geoff Burke

At 1:28 of the third period on Wednesday, Evgeny Kuznetsov scored to give the Caps a 1-0 lead. Twenty-four seconds later the Penguins answered to tie the game. On the ice for the Caps at that time was Brooks Orpik and Tate (?) Chroney. One of these two was at fault.

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brooks-oprik

Photo: Bruce Bennett

It’s been said that Barry Trotz has changed the culture of the Washington Capitals. What does that mean exactly?

In his latest 30 Thoughts column, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman got specific on accountability and Trotz’s role in the Capitals’ turnaround.

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They’re Back: Capitals Beat Devils 5-3

PatrickSmith

Photo credit: Patrick Smith

Greetings, fans! After five and a half months away, fishing, muddin’, and engagin’, the Washington Capitals returned to Verizon Center to start a new season with nervous anticipation.

The team laid out the red carpet carpet before the game, showcasing the team’s finest knit ties and undercuts. Afterwards, however, there was hockey to play. On ice. For real.

The Capitals got off to a slow start, going almost five minutes without a shot attempt early in the first period. Then Evgeny Kuznetsov hooked somebody. Uh oh. Naturally, Jason Chimera and Justin Williams immediately blew right past the Devils defense for a short-handed tick-tack-toe. Then, just two minutes and 28 seconds later, the unthinkable. Brooks Orpik, who missed all of the preseason with a wrist injury, scored. It was his first as a Capital and it came on a one-timer.

The Caps, though, like to disappear after they score. Maybe they go play with their ferrets. I don’t know. Something dumb probably. Anyway, because the Capitals played with their ferrets the Devils scored twice in under three minutes, first Adam Henrique and then Eric Gelinas. Then nothing happened for 25 minutes.

That was, until, Alex Ovechkin happened. The captain went end to end, blowing past John Moore before flipping a delicious, crisp and refreshing wrist shot top shelf on New Jersey netminder Keith Kinkaid. Marcus Johansson added another. Oh, and then Matt Niskanen got himself an empty netter. But wait, the Devils came back with one of their own. Shower of goals! Caps beat Devils 5-3!

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On July 1, 2014, the Washington Capitals signed Brooks Orpik to a five-year, $27.5 million deal. Orpik finally scored his first goal as a Capital tonight. It comes in his 79th regular season game and second season with the team.

In the words of Craig Laughlin, it was a beautiful, goal scorer’s goal.

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CapsCanineCalendar_01

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.

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brooks-orpik-herb-brooks

On Monday, Reddit user /u/k_nasty posted something I and a large chunk of hockey fans did not know. Via Wikipedia, Brooks Orpik is named after Miracle On Ice’s Herb Brooks.

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Brooks Orpik: 2014-15 Season Review

“The things that Brooks Orpik does you can’t put a value on.” That’s what Barry Trotz said in July, and he was wrong. You can put a value on it, and that value is $27.5 million over 5 years.

In year one of his contract, Orpik did well enough– but this was never about the player so much as the wacky expectations foisted upon him.

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orpik

And this is why they signed him. Late in the third period, Brooks Orpik started trying to rail people at the blue line. Basically it’d go like this: a Cap forward would angle a Rangers player near the boards. Then Batya would finish them.

First, he tried to destroy former MVP Martin St. Louis and just barely missed.

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