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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, March 4th (All times eastern)

Washington Capitals (20-33-5) at Atlanta Thrashers (27-27-6), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Atlanta Thrashers try to get back on track tonight when they welcome the Washington Capitals to Philips Arena.

Atlanta had a three-game winning streak ended in Thursday's 3-2 loss to host Boston, its second tilt back from the Olympic hiatus. Marco Sturm netted the game winner and Andrew Raycroft made 20 saves to lift the Bruins.

Ilya Kovalchuk finished with a goal and an assist for the Thrashers, while Kari Lehtonen finished with 28 saves in defeat. Kovalchuk is tied with Washington's Alexander Ovechkin for second in the league at 38 goals.

The Thrashers are tied with Boston for ninth in the Eastern Conference playoff race -- four points behind eighth-place Montreal.

Atlanta will host Florida on Monday.

Washington, meanwhile, is 1-1 since the Olympic break and has lost five of its last six games overall. On Thursday the Caps were slammed, 7-1, by the host Ottawa Senators. Ray Emery made 30 saves and seven different Senators scored goals for the winners.

Ovechkin bagged the Caps' lone goal and Brent Johnson stopped 10 shots in relief of Olaf Kolzig, who was pulled after giving up six goals on 25 shots.

The Capitals will begin a five-game homestand on Monday against the NY Islanders at the newly-renamed Verizon Center.

Atlanta is 3-2 against Washington this season, and 5-2-1 (2 losses, 1 tie) in the last eight meetings.

03/04 10:33:53 ET


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