“He did great,” Trotz said of Chorney on Thursday. “I thought he was real good. Made a couple of good plays. Defensively, I thought he was sharp. I liked his play.”
Chorney played 12 minutes 10 seconds, with one shot, two hits and blocked two shots. His first-period interference penalty led to a Flyers power play, and Philadelphia took advantage with Shayne Gostisbehere score. The Flyers won, 2-1, to force Friday’s Game 5. Chorney said after the game that he wasn’t too frustrated with the early penalty.
“We’ve been talking about as a team that we want to box out,” Chorney said. “That’s kind of what he was doing. He’s going to the net. My job is to not let him get there, and he went down and they make the call. I don’t think it was a bad call, but at the same time, I think it’s important for us as defensemen to make sure Holts is seeing the puck. That’s kind of what I was trying to do.”
With Chorney and Orlov paired together, Nate Schmidt stays in the top-four, skating with John Carlson. After Schmidt averaged less than 11 minutes per game, he had 18:23 of ice time on Wednesday.
“You ask any player and the more you play, the more into the game you get,” Schmidt said. “It’s a little bit easier to get your legs moving, and the legs felt good.”
Having Orpik in the lineup gave the Capitals more flexibility with matchups; he or Carlson could play against an opponents’ top line and a pair of Karl Alzner and Matt Niskanen could, too. Washington will have the advantage of last change on Friday night, which will make controlling that easier. Since Orpik missed 40 games earlier this season with a lower-body injury, the Capitals are comfortable playing without him.
“We’re confident with any of the eight guys we’re going to put in the lineup,” goaltender Braden Holtby said. “It doesn’t really change much.”
Here’s how the lineup is expected to look against the Flyers in Game 5:
Alex Ovechkin-Nicklas Backstrom-T.J. Oshie
Andre Burakovsky-Evgeny Kuznetsov-Justin Williams
Jason Chimera-Mike Richards-Marcus Johansson
Daniel Winnik-Jay Beagle-Tom Wilson
Karl Alzner-Matt Niskanen
Nate Schmidt-John Carlson
Dmitry Orlov-Taylor Chorney
Braden Holtby (starter)
Brooks Orpik (upper-body injury)