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.
Faceoff: 7 p.m., Verizon Center
TV: CSN | Radio: 106.7 FM and 1500 AM
Here is the Capitals’ lineup.
Goal: Holtby, Neuvirth.
Scratches: John Erskine (upper body) and Aaron Volpatti.
LTIR: Jack Hillen (fractured tibial plateau)