NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, November 28th
(All times eastern)
Montreal Canadiens (12-5-4) at Washington Capitals (12-7-3), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Fresh off his first hat trick of the season, Washington
superstar Alex Ovechkin will try to lead the Capitals to a second straight win
when they welcome the Montreal Canadiens for tonight's test at the Verizon
Ovechkin recorded his sixth career hat trick and added an assist in leading
Washington to a 5-3 decision over the visiting Atlanta Thrashers on Wednesday
The 23-year-old Russian phenom posted his first hat trick since March 3 of
last season and also extended his point streak to nine games in the process.
Ovechkin has exploded for 10 goals and 11 assists during the run and is now
leading the Caps with 29 points on the year.
The nine-game point streak is tied with Philadelphia's Simon Gagne for the
longest current stretch in the NHL.
Viktor Kozlov also scored a goal and chipped in two assists, while Eric Fehr
notched a goal for Washington, which snapped a three-game slide and improved
to 8-0-1 at home this season. Jose Theodore needed just 15 saves to pick up
The Capitals, who are ending a brief two-game homestand tonight, are one of
two teams left in the league without a regulation loss as the host this
season. San Jose is 12-0-1 on home ice this season.
Washington has been bit by the injury bug recently as the team was without
seven players on Wednesday because of various ailments. The injured include
the team's top defenseman in Mike Green (shoulder) as well as forwards
Alexander Semin (back) and Sergei Fedorov (ankle). Those players are
considered day-to-day and are not expected to return until next week.
Caps defenseman Tom Poti injured his groin in Wednesday's game and is
questionable for tonight's tilt. If Poti is unable to play, Washington will
have just five healthy defensemen for this evening's contest.
The Canadiens, meanwhile, ended a two-game slide with Wednesday's road win
over the defending Stanley Cup champions. Tomas Plekanec's first goal in nine
games proved to be the game-winner, as Montreal downed the Detroit Red Wings,
3-1, at Joe Louis Arena.
Maxim Lapierre and Christopher Higgins also scored for the Canadiens, who
snapped a two-game slide, but earned a point for the fourth straight game
Carey Price stopped 32 shots to pick up the win and improve to 10-4-3 on the
The Habs, who will begin a season-long seven-game homestand Saturday against
Buffalo, are 7-3-2 as the visiting team this season.
Montreal has two of three, four of six and seven of the last 10 meetings with
the Caps. The Canadiens have been defeated in two of their last three stops to
11/28 11:03:18 ET