Washington Capitals at Toronto Maple Leafs
Location: 43.6435° N, 79.3791° W
Broadcast/Streaming: TSN4, TVA Sports, NHL Live, NBC Sports Washington
Opponent SBNation Site: Japers RInk
The Maple Leafs road trip has ended, with the final record being 3-2-1., with losses against the Coyotes (again, I’m sorry), Rangers, and the Blues in overtime. The Leafs also lost Nazem Kadri to a concussion, suffered at the hands of the Blues Vince Dunn
Vince Dunn with a huge hit on Kadri pic.twitter.com/EHOOwb6PZ1— Flintor (@TheFlintor) February 20, 2019
The big discussion as the Leafs return home is how will they respond to the loss of Kadri? They haven’t called anyone else up, so it must mean someone is getting shifted. Let’s get right to the Leafs lines.
Zach Hyman - John Tavares - Mitch Marner
Patrick Marleau - Auston Matthews - Kasperi Kapanen
Andreas Johnsson - William Nylander - Connor Brown
Par Lindholm - Frederik Gauthier - Tyler Ennis
Yes, William Nylander is getting his chance to be the centre some have always wanted him to be. With the addition of Tavares to the Leafs, most thought this idea was dead, but if it works well, there will always be options for last minute substitutions. Tyler Ennis’ return happened at the right time as well, so he could slip into the line up with ease.
Morgan Rielly - Ron Hainsey
Jake Gardiner - Nikita Zaitsev
Jake Muzzin - Travis Dermott
Yes, it’s the return of Rielly - Hanisey, and Jake Muzzin is down with Dermott. These are just the morning skate pairings so maybe things could change, but keeping the defence deep on the left side isn’t a bad idea.
Andersen is starting, which is no surprise. Since I’m a bit late I also have the morning skate power play units:
#Leafs PP units at morning skate:— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) February 21, 2019
Washington Capitals lines
Alex Ovechkin - Evgeny Kuznetsov - Tom Wilson
Jakub Vrana - Nicklas Backstrom - TJ Oshie
Andre Burakovsky - Lars Eller - Brett Connolly
Chandler Stephenson - Nic Dowd - Travis Boyd
Michal Kempny - John Carlson
Dmitri Orlov - Matt Niskanen
Brooks Orpik - Christian Djoos
The Capitals placed Devante Smith-Pelley on waivers yesterday, if he clears he could still play for the Capitals, but I wouldn’t bet on him playing if he does.
Nothing confirmed, so this is speculation on my part, but I'm guessing if Carl Hagelin does end up in Washington today, the Kings likely get a third-round pick in return as part of it. But we shall see what happens once DSP either clears or gets claimed at noon ET on waivers— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) February 21, 2019
Round one vs Boston Bruins
|14GF - 14GA||Goal Differential||14GF - 14GA|
|27.3% - 5th||Power Play||35.7% - 2nd|
|64.3% - 15th||Penalty Kill||72.7% - 12th|
|Auston Matthews - 4||Most Goals||Bergeron, Krejci, Pastrnak, Marchand, Coyle - 2|
|Morgan Rielly - 4||Most Assists||Brad Marchand - 4|
|Auston Matthews - 5||Most Points||Brad Marchand - 6|
|Nazem Kadri - 19||Most PM||Charlie McAvoy - 6|
|Morgan Rielly - 24:34/G||TOI Leader||Charlie McAvoy - 16|
|Frederik Andersen - .925sv%||Starting Goalie||Tuukka Rask - .922sv%|
Like the Maple Leafs were the past six games, the Capitals are on a road trip themselves. Right now they’ve beaten the Sharks 5-1, and Kings 3-2, while losing to the Ducks(!) 5-2 and were shutout by the Blue Jackets 3-0.
According to Japers Rink, on the road this season, the Capitals have had just 70 power plays, so hopefully the refs keep their whistles to themselves as well. The Leafs will need some friendly officiating with Tom Wilson out on the ice.
After a frustrating game against the Coyotes, and first half against the Blues, the home crowd needs to see a strong start from the Maple Leafs. They’ve fallen to four points back of the Boston Bruins for second in the Atlantic, and Montreal is right there waiting to take the spot.