brooks-oprik-woah-face

Photo: Geoff Burke

Over the offseason, Brooks Orpik signed what many thought to be the worst contract of free agency– a five-year, $27 million deal that ends when he’s approximately 84. After months of kind of bummer analysis (even from us), the former Penguin jumped on the ice tonight for the first time as a Capital and he was noticeable– in a lot of different ways.

First, let’s see the hits because you guys want to see the hits.

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andre-burakovsky-first-nhl-goal-smile

Photo: Patrick McDermott

19-year-old Andre Burakovsky has already scored his first NHL goal, and we’re not even ten minutes old! Skating between Troy Brouwer and Marcus Johansson, Burakovsky continued his torrid pace from the preseason, scoring a one-timer from the slot.

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alex-ovechkin-date

A few weeks ago, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin hosted a private skate for children with developmental disabilities. It was a cute skate, but the cute meter went to 11 when Ovechkin was asked out on a date by Ann, a 10-year-old who has Down syndrome.

Now that’s a confident woman.

After playing her request off that day, the bachelor decided to have Ann’s entire family over for dinner at Verizon Center on Sunday. After they watched the Capitals beat the Hurricanes 5-2.

It’s about as adorable as you can imagine. Wait, actually no. It’s moar than that.

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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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andre-burakovsky-celebrates-ovi

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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bowey-kelowna

Washington Capitals top defensive prospect Madison Bowey tallied three fancy assists in the Kelowna Rockets’ convincing 8-2 win over the Prince George Cougars on Saturday.

It was the first WHL game of the year for Bowey, who missed his team’s first two games (both wins) while he participated in the Caps’ training camp. Bowey was assessed four penalty minutes (two roughing minors) as the teams combined for 92 minutes in the penalty box.

Bowey was named the game’s first star.

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schmidt-elbowed

Last season, Washington Capitals defense prospect Nate Schmidt had his year ended early after suffering a knee injury on a low-bridge hit by Norfolk Admirals defenseman Garnet Exelby.

Playing Montreal on Sunday, Schmidt narrowly missed a head injury after getting elbowed in the noggin by Jarred Tinordi, son of former Capital, Mark Tinordi.

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Ovechkin Fist Pump

Photo: clydeorama

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin scored his first goal of the preseason. It is literally exactly how you’d imagine it.

Powerplay goal? Check.
At or near the left circle? Check.
The goalie knew it was coming and still couldn’t stop it? Check.

Look at this ish.

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Nathan Walker’s Incredible Hip Check (GIF)

nathan-walker-hip-check

Photo: Alex Brandon

I was working on my new patio on Sunday night, so I missed the entire Washington Capitals/Buffalo Sabres preseason game. Bummer, I know. Luckily for me, Steve Wilhite of CompuServe invented GIFs in the late 80s, so I didn’t to have to miss one of the greatest hip checks ever.

And I’m saying that last part seriously, without hyperbole.

Australian Nathan Walker is teeny-tiny. He’s a baby joey hanging out in his mama’s pouch. But when Walker knocked Vaclav Karabacek heels-over-head on Sunday night, his slight 5-foot-8 frame didn’t matter.

Look at this.

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caps-baby

After the Washington Capitals defeated the Buffalo Sabres 1-0 in their preseason opener on Sunday, the game’s only scorer, Andre Burakovsky, spoke to CSN Washington’s Al Koken. Burakovsky said stuff but who cares; look at that baby in the corner.

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