7:00 P.M. – SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 16
CAPITAL ONE ARENA
Bally Sports Ohio
ESPN+ Power Play
|ODDS & PROJECTIONS:|
|ODDS OF CBJ WIN PER MONEYPUCK: 46%|
PLAYOFF ODDS PER MONEYPUCK:
|TIPICO SPORTSBOOK: CBJ +145|
The Columbus Blue Jackets have had a lead in the second period or later in six straight games.
And they have zero victories to show for it.
They'll look to get a lead — and hold it — Saturday night when Boone Jenner and company battle the Washington Capitals in the District of Columbia.
A win would stop a miserable streak for the Blue Jackets in which they've won just one of their last twelve games. They're in the basement of the Eastern Conference and beginning to flirt with the NHL's cellar.
The task of two points is made even more difficult by the fact that, for the second consecutive weekend, Columbus is playing back-to-back road games.
Here's what to know in advance of puck-drop at the Capital One Arena:
|CAPITALS LAST THREE GAMES|
|FRI, 11/10||@ Devils||W, 4-2|
|SAT, 11/11||@ Islanders||W, 4-1|
|TUE, 11/14||vs. Golden Knights||W, 2-0|
|CAPITALS TEAM LEADERS|
TALKING POINTS: WSH
Washington is 8-4-2 and frankly, it makes no sense. They're goals per game (2.36) checks in at second worst in the NHL, and so does their power play (7.3%). The defense and goaltending have been good, but they're outside of the top five in goals against (2.64) and many other key stats (shots, penalty kill, etc.) are in the middle of the pack. Yet, here we are: they're 7-1-1 over their last nine, and in second place in a tough Metro division.
The penalty kill does give some credence to the Caps early-season success. They've killed 20 straight opposition power plays over the last nine games, after a really bad first five games in which they gave up seven goals on 22 PK's. That credence takes a punch to the mouth though, when one recalls that the Blue Jackets just pulled off an almost identical feat (nine straight games, but 22 penalty kills instead of 20) and had nothing to show for it except for a couple of OTL points.
Alex Ovechkin has just four goals in his first 14 games. That's half of the eight he had through the same number of games last season, and a third of the 12 he had in 14 games to start the 2021-22 season. At age
16338, is Ovechkin finally starting to slow down? Or is it more about the (lack of) weapons around him?
TALKING POINTS: CBJ
The most talked-about thing at the Blue Jackets water cooler Friday was the decision by head coach Pascal Vincent to bench Johnny Gaudreau and Patrik Laine in the final minutes of Thursday's contest against Arizona. There is no doubt that the duo is off to career-bad starts. Laine has missed half of the season with a
concussionupper body injury, so there's a little bit of understanding there, but if it doesn't get turned around soon for both him and #13, things have the potential to get out of hand. One of them, and preferably both, need a show-out performance Saturday against a stingy Capitals team.
Over the last two dozen power plays, the Blue Jackets have one goal. Washington is well-disciplined and, as mentioned above, have quite the streak going when it comes to killing penalties. Good luck.
- Lines have been wildly inconsistent this season, but the decision to have Yegor Chinakhov with Gaudreau and Laine was an interesting one. One thing to watch for Saturday is to what degree we see musical chairs played once the game starts, particularly if the offense is sputtering. While the Voronkov—Fantilli—Marchenko line has been the most consistent, how much longer does one go without testing Fantilli at center with Gaudreau and Laine on his sides?
Updated: 7:05 a.m. // Subject to Change
Lines are based on most recent practice/game, as well as injury updates and news.
|13||Johnny Gaudreau||29||Patrik Laine||59||Yegor Chinakhov|
|10||Dmitri Voronkov||11||Adam Fantilli||86||Kirill Marchenko|
|4||Cole Sillinger||38||Boone Jenner||64||Trey Fix-Wolansky|
|42||Alexandre Texier||7||Sean Kuraly||19||Justin Danforth|
|8||Zach Werenski||44||Erik Gudbranson|
|9||Ivan Provorov||78||Damon Severson|
|27||Adam Boqvist||2||Andrew Peeke|
|90||Elvis Merzlikins||30||Spencer Martin|