Open thread: Capitals vs. Oilers

October 14, 2013

(AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Braden Holtby, who is still searching for his first win of the season, gets the call for the Capitals. Tonight’s contest marks the fifth start of the season for Holtby (0-3-0, .873 save percentage, 4.04 GAA).

While the Capitals’ early struggles aren’t the exclusive fault of the goaltenders, neither one has made timely, important stops with consistency in their appearances so far. Washington could use more from whichever goaltender suits up on any given night. As evidenced by the Avalanche, there is little that can boost a team as much as strong performances from a netminder.

“You can’t replace that feeling, the confidence that players have knowing that if they make a mistake another guy’s got their back,” Coach Adam Oates said. “Just like some guys haven’t scored yet, some pucks haven’t been stopped yet.”

Jason LaBarbera (1-0-0, .892 save percentage, 2.69 GAA) gets the nod in net for the Oilers.

Talk about the game right here and pass the time before puck drop with these reads.

Second line knows they ‘can play better’ | Oates reinforces positives after loss to Avs

Did Colorado provide a blueprint to stop Caps’ PP? | In search of stronger starts

Faceoff: 7 p.m., Verizon Center
TV: CSN | Radio: 106.7 FM and 1500 AM

Here is the Capitals’ lineup.

Forwards
Johansson-Backstrom-Ovechkin
Laich-Grabovski-Brouwer
Chimera-Fehr-Ward
Erat-Beagle-Wilson

Defense
Alzner-Green
Urbom-Carlson
Schmidt-Oleksy

Goal: Holtby, Neuvirth.
Scratches: John Erskine (upper body) and Aaron Volpatti.
LTIR: Jack Hillen (fractured tibial plateau)

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Katie Carrera · October 14, 2013