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Photo: Kyle Mace – Chocolate Hockey

Last night in Hershey, Caps goaltending prospect Pheonix Copley did something remarkable. No, I’m not talking about the AHL rookie’s second straight shutout. Nor am I talking about his mind-boggling shutout streak of 144:28.

Copley tried to scored an empty net goal!

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christian-djoos

Photo: Simon Hastegard / Bildbyran

Washington Capitals defense prospect Christian Djoos scored two goals and an assist as his Brynas lost to HV71 7-4 on Saturday.

Djoos, who was held off the scoresheet in the first seven games of the season, now has two goals and two assists in the last three games.

Saturday’s contest was Djoos’ first multi-goal game in the top tier Swedish league. The 20-year-old defenseman, who was signed over the summer to a three year entry-level contract, also tied his career high in points in a single game and registered season high 23:33 of ice time.

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marcus-johansson-goal

Photo: Anne-Marie Sorvin

Washington Capitals forward Marcus Johansson has found a home on the team’s second line. Skating with fellow Swede Andre Burakovsky and not-a-Swede Troy Brouwer, Johansson has doubled his shot output from last season.

Johansson has been more productive with his goal output as well. Last year, Johansson was a passenger on the team’s first line with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, scoring only two goals at even strength through 80 games– and none of them when skating with Ovechkin.

This year is totally different. Johansson has already matched last season’s total– and he’s done it in 72 fewer games.

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obrien-first-nhl-goal

During the fall, 20-year-old forward Liam O’Brien was given an amateur contract from the Capitals. Back then, his goal was simply to stick around for a few more days. Instead, he became one of the most impressive players during camp, earning a three-year entry-level contract at its completion for his hard work and grit.

On October 14th, O’Brien notched his first NHL point (and first NHL tongue wag) against the San Jose Sharks. Against the Canucks on Sunday, O’Brien scored his first NHL goal on former Vezina Trophy winner Ryan Miller.

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Karl Alzner Messes With the Penalty-Box Cam (GIF)

alzner-messes-with-penalty-box-cam

Karl Alzner was whistled for interference late in the second period, which was the exact moment the wheels fell off for the Caps. At least for a 1:47 of game action, during which the Canucks scored three times.

But first: watch Alzner mess with the penalty-box camera.

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joel-ward-beast-mode

After the Caps lost 3-2 to Edmonton on Wednesday, Caps coach Barry Trotz changed the lines. He broke up the Joel Ward/Jason Chimera “gang green” line (which is seriously the worst nickname for a lot of reasons).”Last couple games I can’t say they’re a great line for us,” Trotz told the Washington Post.

“Yeah, green line got blown up,” Ward said. “We got scored on last game. It was a tough loss for sure. I guess a little shake-up can’t hurt. We’ll see what happens.”

Crazy things happened. The Caps fourth line, which had been dormant all season, went nuts with Wardo on the right wing on Saturday night. Ward scored two goals (one on the power play), the latter of which was credited as the game-winning goal. And Ward would have had a hat trick, but he put himself into the net instead of the puck.

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orpik-stick-stuck-in-pants

Photo: @RegressedPDO

Over the offeseason, the Washington Capitals backed up a Brinks truck to Brooks Oprik’s driveway because of his physical game. So far this season, Orpik has delivered. On opening night, CSN Washington called the former Penguin the player of the game for all his big body checks. And Saturday night in Calgary, Orpik went on a hitting bonanza.

Orpik led all skaters with 10 hits. Late in the second period, the Caps defenseman made professional hockey player Josh Jooris wish he were a Mexico City sewer diver instead.

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ovechkin-blocks-shot-with-wrist

Alex Ovechkin earns almost 9.5 million dollars against the salary cap each season, more than 13 percent of the Washington Capitals’ player budget. That’s why it’s a little worrying when Ovi risks injury– even more so when he does it blocking an inconsequential shot.

So…

On Saturday night in Calgary, Alex Ovechkin risked injury by blocking an inconsequential shot.

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ovi-through-legs

Four minutes into the third period, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin nearly tied the game with a brilliant individual effort. After getting a perfect pass from Troy Brouwer, Ovechkin churned his legs and went solo against Oilers defenseman Justin Schultz.

Schultz had plenty of space and read Ovi perfectly– at least at first. But when you reach with your stick against one of the greats instead of taking the body, you might get burned.

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ovechkin-celebrates

We always hear criticism about Alex Ovechkin‘s leadership, which is why I bring your attention to this post. Early in the second period, Caps defenseman Mike Green scored a goal on a beauty of a wrist shot, his third goal in five games.

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