The Washington Capitals held an optional practice in front of a full house, Saturday. Half the team, including Head Coach Barry Trotz, was not on the ice. Everyone was energized and in high spirits from the 6-0 shutout against the Chicago Blackhawks the night before.
Instead of a puck, Daniel Winnik started the warm-up with a perforated practice golf ball. Later Braden Holtby and Nate Schmidt shared a silly moment after Schmidt and Dmitry Orlov put a shot past the netminder. Holtbeast playfully slashed Schmidt’s legs, whose dramatics ensued for a fun set of images. Holtby’s face after his payback was priceless.
Post-practice Matt Niskanen even tried to hide from the camera and we shared a laugh. It was a great welcome back to the hockey grind. Enjoy these snaps from the morning practice.
When Braden Holtby’s shutout streak ended at a nice total of 169 minutes, the Capitals suddenly found themselves in a tie game.
“Don’t worry,” Evgeny Kuznetsov probably said, “I’ve got this.”
“But Kuzy,” Brooks Orpik probably said, “you never score anymore.”
Then Kuznetsov spit into the ice, grinned, and said, “watch this.”
So watch this.
Friday night, the Washington Capitals held another team-building event. This time the Caps threw some rocks and curled north of the border in Ottawa. According to the Capitals, Jay Beagle, Nate Schmidt, Brett Leonhardt, and Tim Ohashi won the match.
But I want to point you to what happened afterwards. The Caps’ three Russians, Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and Dmitry Orlov, explored a nearby hockey store in the capital city. Outside the building, there was a giant advertisement of Alex Ovechkin. So naturally the trio had to take a video in front of it.
Thursday afternoon, the NHL announced that Evgeny Kuznetsov was fined $2,000 for his dive against the New Jersey Devils on December 29. As Kuznetsov skated up the ice, Beau Bennett pushed the Caps forward during a line change. Kuzy fell to the ice in an attempt to draw a penalty.
What may have further drawn the ire of the NHL was the fact that Kuznetsov dangerously swung the butt-end of his stick towards the Devils bench in the aftermath.
Tuesday night at Verizon Center, the Washington Capitals hosted regular-season game number 37 against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The stakes were low, but by the end of the night, it felt like the Caps had won a playoff series.
Between the Russian hat trick of goals (Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, and Dmitry Orlov all scored) to the team’s multiple improbable comebacks, the Caps really wanted to win and their celebrations reflected that.
For instance, when John Carlson scored to tie the game 5-5 late in the third period, the Caps started to punch each other.
The Washington Capitals and the Toronto Maple Leafs just engaged in an instant classic.
After taking an initial 1-0 lead, the Capitals would comeback three separate times (2-1, 4-2, and 5-4) before winning in overtime. The Caps’ 6-5 OT victory would end the Leafs’ winning-streak at five games.
Let’s celebrate by re-watching all the of the goals.
It’s 2017, you guys!
All night, Capitals players have been sharing their photos, celebrating the new year. As Washington is the only team in the NHL to play both on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, many of the players stayed in with their families.
Here’s what they posted and the translations.
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