Unlike the wings, the center position is having down-to-the-wire battles. With Nicklas Backstrom out for an expected 4-10 games, the position is still taking shape even as the regular season starts. Although Andre Burakovsky is slated to be the second line center at the beginning of the season, the rest of the lines are still being shifted around. With one of the most respected centers in the game, one very hot up-and-comer, an overpaid veteran, and Jay Beagle, this is a highly-staffed position that will take a few weeks to be completely set. [Read more…]
Whereas there was very little turnover on the left wing, not the same can be said for the right wingers. Last season, the team seriously upgraded its defense; now it’s the right wings that get the facelift. Out are two of the longer-tenured players on the team; in are an Olympic hero and Mr. Game 7. And this season sets up a key one in the development of one of the team’s biggest hitters and tough guys. Can Tom Wilson transition into a complete player, or is this his role going forward? Also: Jay Beagle. [Read more…]
Washington Capitals Game 3 Recap: Beagle, Holtby lift Washington to 1-0 win, 2-1 series lead over Rangers
Another skittish first period gave way to a high-flying second, and both stellar goaltending and a playoff-type goal by one of head coach Barry Trotz’s favorite players proved to be enough.
Jay Beagle had the game-winning goal in the second period, and a 30-save shutout from Braden Holtby paved the way to a 1-0 win for Washington on Monday night at Verizon Center. The Capitals now hold a 2-1 series lead over the New York Rangers in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference Semifinal.
Another skittish first period gave way to a high-flying second, and a playoff-type goal by one of the less-recognizable Washington Capitals proved to be enough.
Jay Beagle had the game-winning goal in the second period, and a consistently strong backcheck and simply sensational effort from Braden Holtby paved the way to a 1-0 win for Washington on Monday night at Verizon Center. The Capitals now hold a 2-1 series lead over the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference Semifinal.
Full story coming later tonight.
FIRST STAR: Curtis Glencross. Glencross has proved to be a wonderful addition to Washington so far, providing a much needed spark to the second power play unit. He had three points against Buffalo.
SECOND STAR: Nicklas Backstrom. He’s got an NHL leading 50 assists. Beastly.
THIRD STAR: Jay Beagle. Barry Trotz favorite Beagle is in the midst of the best season of his career. He’s always worked hard to improve, and this year, it shows.
The Washington Capitals’ four-game win streak was brought to an end on Sunday with a 3-2 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. Despite battling back from a 2-0 deficit, the Caps were unable to finish off the Flyers and instead gave up a late third-period goal for the loss.
The Caps had another sluggish start and found themselves down 2-0 in the second period. Claude Giroux snapped an 11-game goalless drought with an early power play goal and Wayne Simmonds added another power play tally in the second. Tom Wilson finally got the Caps on the board and Joel Ward caught Philadelphia goalie Robb Zepp off guard with a rolling puck chipped into the top shelf to tie it in the second. [Read more…]
JAY BEAGLE SCORES TWICE AS CAPS EARN TWO POINTS IN FIRST OF FOUR-GAME ROAD TRIP
Joel Ward scored in overtime to lift the Washington Capitals over the San Jose Sharks 5-4, earning the Caps (29-16-10) two points in the first of a four-game road trip.
Ward banged home a rebound of a Mike Green shot after the pair came in 3-on-2 along with Jay Beagle. Ward started the play by creating a turnover in the neutral zone on a play that looked like he might have hooked a Sharks player down before retrieving the puck.
Beagle opened the scoring with five minutes left in the first with a wrist shot past Antti Niemi.
That was erased — quickly — at the start of the second, as San Jose, well, the magnificently bearded Brent Burns, scored twice in the span of 22 seconds within the first minute of the frame, first with a tip-in, then with a wrist shot after a bad turnover at the blue line. [Read more…]
Holtby’s 25 saves led the way for Washington’s 2-1 win in Ottawa, and his 25th win of the season, which is good enough for sixth in the league amongst fellow goaltenders for regular season wins.
He is now tied with Rick Nash for the NHL goal scoring lead with 32, thanks to his game-winner in Ottawa.
It may have been a weird line change that left Beagle on the ice for the play that led to Ovechkin’s game-winning goal, but whatever the twist of fate, he collected perhaps the nicest assist of his career on the ensuing sequence.
Head coach Barry Trotz has tried just about everyone at right wing on the top line, but no one creates more reaction than when Jay Beagle is given the nod.
Trotz is not the first coach to try this tactic. Adam Oates famously paired Beagle with Ovechkin as the top line center much to the horror of the hockey community. The reaction was so negative some touted this decision as one of the main reasons why Oates should be fired.
With a competent coach now in charge of the team, many thought the days of Beagle on the top line were over, but in the merry-go-round of forwards to play on the right of the top line, Beagle has certainly had his fair share of opportunities. [Read more…]
As the teams return from the All-Star Break and meaningful hockey starts again, the next big day on the NHL calendar is the trade deadline.
The NHL trade deadline is on March 2 at 3 pm, just over a month away. The task for each team over the next few weeks is to determine what their realistic goals are for this season and going forward so that they can determine if they will be buyers or sellers at the deadline.
On an individual level, general managers need to determine the future of their pending free agents, i.e. who they will seek to re-sign and who already has one foot out of the door.
The Washington Capitals are no exception. There are currently 10 players on the roster who are in the final year of their contract and General Manager Brian MacLellan has to determine now who he wants to see back in Washington next season. [Read more…]