Coming of two straight tough losses, the Washington Capitals came up big in Arizona with a 4-2 win over the Coyotes. Jakub Vrana, Matt Niskanen, and Andre Burakovsky each lit the lamp, Burkie’s goal coming in crunch time, as did Alex Ovechkin with an empty netter. Perhaps the funniest thing from this storyline is Pheonix Copley got the start in Phoenix. Copley stopped 27-04-28 shots with a .931 save percentage in the win. Continue reading “Andre Burakovsky Comes Up Clutch to Snap Caps Two-Game Slide”
If you didn’t know who Clayton Keller was before the Capitals played the Coyotes at the Capitals One Arena back on November 6th, you should now. Scoring his 11th goal beating Holtby low stick side, he out waited the Vezina trophy winning goalie after freezing him with a nice no look shot on a 2 on 1. One minute into the game and he looked quite comfortable in shooting the puck. The 7th overall pick in 2016 could be a outside contender for rookie of the year as he’s been a sign of positivity for the desert dogs through an otherwise disastrous season thus far. The Coyotes sit dead last in the NHL standings with only 19 pts and 7 regulation wins so far. And it’s only Christmas break .. wow.
Keller, who stands 5’10’ and weighs in at 168 lbs, is a speedy player who thinks quick and can score highlight reel goals. First garnering some national attention at the 2017 World Championships as an 18 year old, the shifty center registered 5 G’s and 7 pts in eight games to help Team USA to a Gold medal. The NHL rookie of the month for October has levelled off since his torrid start where he had 11 G’s and 17 pts in the teams first 17 games. Since then he’s scored 1 goal and 9 assists in the last 19 games.
The Caps have shown great team defence in neutralizing the oppositions speed as we’ve seen vs Edmonton and Toronto in the past and will look to contain Keller and the other dynamic forwards like Max Domi to prevent high opportunity scoring chances by forcing them outside and collapsing in front of the Caps net. I feel Keller will have a couple scoring chances where Grubauer (I assume he’s playing) will be called on.
Go Caps Go
The Arizona Coyotes start the first of five road games this evening as they face off against the Washington Capitals in DC. Louis Domingue is set to start in net for the Coyotes and for the Capitals Braden Holtby is expected to make the start.
While Domingue is still a young goaltender at the age of 23, this hasn’t been a season to remember just yet. With a 12-9-4 record and GAA of 2.67 the young goaltender is playing his first game against a relentless Capitals offense that shows no mercy. The Capitals look to do something you rarely see in February, secure a playoff position!
The Capitals are at 90 points as of today but three wins week means they will have their place in the post season before we even hit the month of March. For a team with such a high power offense it’s easy to focus on just them, but it’s important to give recognition to the man that’s kept them in it with an impressive 37-6-4 record.
Something that shouldn’t be mentioned is Holtby’s recent performance or saying it is lacking. Several sports writers have recently made statements that make it seem as the Number One goalie isn’t good. I only have one thing to say to that. The numbers don’t lie, people do! There is no argument that Holtby has been the face of the NHL for goalies this season!!
By Timothy Stromberg