26-20-6 (58 points; .558%)
ROSTER / SCHEDULE
7:300 P.M. – TUESDAY, JANUARY 31
Bally Sports Ohio
ESPN+ (Out of Market)
Back home after a 1-2-1 road trip, the Columbus Blue Jackets are set for battle against Alex Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals at Nationwide Arena on Tuesday night.
Columbus picked up points in the first two games of their northwest excursion — first losing in overtime to the Calgary Flames and then upsetting the streaking Edmonton Oilers in overtime. But the road trip would end with a whimper, with multi-goal defeats at the hands of the Vancouver Canucks and Seattle Kraken.
Now, the Blue Jackets are back at Nationwide Arena for just one game before the NHL's All-Star Break. In it, they'll look to end a three-game win streak by the Capitals in the Buckeye State. Columbus' last home win over Washington came in December of 2019. Since then, it's been three sound defeats that have seen the Capitals outscore the Blue Jackets by a 17-7 margin. Ovechkin and (*checks notes*) Garnet Hathaway have three goals apiece in those games, nearly outscoring Columbus on their own.
Here's what to know when Washington and Columbus face off for the third of four times this season:
|ODDS OF CBJ WIN PER MONEYPUCK||33%|
|ODDS OF CBJ WIN PER THE 538||41%|
|CAESAR'S SPORTSBOOK BETTING||WSH|
|CAPS: LAST THREE GAMES|
|TUE, 1/24||@ Avalanche||L, 3-2|
|THU, 1/26||vs. Penguins||W, 3-2 SO|
|SUN, 1/29||@ Maple Leafs||L, 5-1|
|CAPS: TEAM LEADERS|
TALKING POINTS: CAPS
It's still all about AO for the Capitals. He leads the team in goals by a huge margin (32; second on the team is Marcus Johansson with 13) and has twice the amount of points as all but three other Washington skaters. He's been predominantly centered by Evgeny Kuznetsov and Dylan Strome this season, most recently the latter. Kuznetsov and Strome are, to no surprise when playing with Ovechkin, top two on the club in assists.
The Caps come into Nationwide Arena following a 5-1 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs. That's tied with two other games for the Caps largest loss of the season. It was also Washington's third loss in four games, the second time this month they've dropped three of four.
- Darcy Kuemper, who came over from the Colorado Avalanche after winning a Stanley Cup last season, has been really good. With 34 starts to his credit, he's got a 2.62 goals against average to pair with a .915 save percentage. Not eye-popping, but respectable. What is eye-popping, though, is this: Kuemper is the sole leader in the NHL in shutouts, with five.
TALKING POINTS: CBJ
The injury bug has made a resurgence in Columbus. Johnny Gaudreau and Boone Jenner were banged up in Saturday's loss to the Kraken. Neither player was at practice Monday. Nor were defensemen Nick Blankenburg or Adam Boqvist. All four players are questionable for Tuesday's game. (Note: Keep up to date with our own Coby Maeir on Twitter for updates on these players throughout the day.)
If Gaudreau isn't in the lineup, he will become the last regular in the lineup to miss a game. He's the only Blue Jacket to play in all 50 games so far. Point pace update: with 48 points so far, Gaudreau is on pace for 79 points. Very good, but he's falling off the pace of Artemi Panarin's single season record of 87. Missing any time certainly won't help that.
- The power play was surprisingly decent on the road trip. They scored four times in 12 attempts and are now up to 28th in the league at a 16.5% conversion rate. The penalty kill was not so good, allowing three goals on nine attempts.
Updated: 7:05 a.m. // Subject to Change
|13||Johnny Gaudreau||38||Boone Jenner||86||Kirill Marchenko|
|91||Kent Johnson||96||Jack Roslovic||29||Patrik Laine|
|19||Liam Foudy||34||Cole Sillinger||52||Emil Bemstrom|
|50||Eric Robinson||7||Sean Kuraly||24||Mathieu Olivier|
|4||Vladislav Gavrikov||2||Andrew Peeke|
|75||Tim Berni||44||Eric Gudbranson|
|15||Gavin Bayreuther||47||Marcus Bjork|
|70||Joonas Korpisalo||90||Elvis Merzlikins|