LOS ANGELES – The Washington Capitals continue their California swing on Wednesday night when they play the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center.
The Capitals have a 23-7-2 record on the road this season, ranking first in the NHL in road point percentage (.750) and second in road wins (23) and road points (48). With a victory, Washington would tie the franchise record for road wins in a season (2009-10: 24) and the Capitals’ 23 road wins are tied for the most through a team’s first 32 road games in NHL history.
Washington won the teams’ first matchup, 3-1, but the Kings posed a considerable test, putting 40 shots on net. Backup goaltender Philipp Grubauer backstopped that game, but Braden Holtby starts Wednesday for the Capitals. Holtby made 27 saves on Monday in a shootout win against Anaheim, arguably the sharpest he’s looked since before the all-star break.
It was Holtby’s 41st win of the season, and a win on Wednesday night would set the franchise record for most wins in a single season. Holtby is the 13th goaltender in NHL history to post multiple 40-win seasons. He has a 41-8-3 record with two shutouts, a 2.21 goals-against average and a .923 save percentage this season.
For Justin Williams and Mike Richards, this game will mark their first time back in Staples Center since they became free agents and joined the Capitals. Expect tribute videos for both of them.
The Capitals’ lineup is below, and the discussion thread is now open.
Alex Ovechkin-Nicklas Backstrom-T.J. Oshie
Andre Burakovsky-Evgeny Kuznetsov-Justin Williams
Jason Chimera-Marcus Johansson-Tom Wilson
Daniel Winnik-Mike Richards-Jay Beagle
Karl Alzner-Matt Niskanen
Brooks Orpik-Dmitry Orlov
Mike Weber-Taylor Chorney
Braden Holtby (starter)
John Carlson (lower-body)