Washington Capitals Player News: All Positions

News: Holtby is slated to start between the pipes in Thursday's home matchup with Montreal, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Holtby was a little shaky in his last start Monday against Vegas, surrendering three goals on 29 shots en route to a tough 3-2 loss. The 30-year-old backstop will try to get back in the win column in a favorable home matchup with a free-falling Canadiens club that's lost five straight games.
News: Kuznetsov (upper body) will be back in the lineup for Thursday's matchup with Montreal, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Following his three-game stint on the shelf, Kuznetsov will slot back into a second-line role and should rejoin the top power-play unit. Prior to getting hurt, the world-class center racked up three goals in his previous five outings and will no doubt be eager to pick up where he left off.
News: The Sharks have traded Dillon to the Capitals for a 2020 second-round pick and a 2021 conditional third-round pick. The Sharks retained 50 percent of his $3.270 million cap hit.
Impact: Dillon is a coveted left-handed shot defenseman who is known more for his defensive abilities than offensive upside. The 29-year-old has 14 points through 59 games, but he's racked up a whopping 178 hits and a solid 51.7 Corsi For percentage. He's expected to work on the second pairing and will be an unrestricted free agent in July.
News: Holtby yielded three goals on 29 shots in a 3-2 loss to Vegas on Monday.
Impact: Holtby could hardly be faulted on the goals, all of which came on re-directs or one-timers on the doorstep. Still, a 3-0 deficit proved too steep a mountain to climb for the Capitals and Holtby suffered his second straight road loss. Holtby fell to 21-13-4 with a 3.11 GAA and .897 save percentage heading into Thursday's game against Montreal.
News: Vrana had a pair of assists and one shot on goal in Monday's 3-2 loss to Vegas.
Impact: Vrana was in on both T.J. Oshie goals midway through the third period, helping to turn a 3-0 Vegas lead into a one-goal contest. Vrana's goal-scoring has dried up in recent weeks -- he's gone nine games without one -- but he has still managed to chip in with seven helpers in that stretch. Overall, the 23-year-old has 23 goals and a career-high 49 points through 59 games.
News: Oshie scored a pair of goals, including one on the power play, on his only two shots in Monday's 3-2 loss to Vegas. He also added five hits.
Impact: Oshie single-handedly made the game interesting midway through the third period, scoring twice just over two minutes apart to draw Washington to within a goal. Both goals were absolute rockets from the right faceoff circle and the outburst gave him five goals in the last five games. The 33-year-old now has 24 goals and 44 points in 59 games, with 10 of his tallies coming with the man advantage.
News: Holtby will get the road start Monday versus the Golden Knights.
Impact: Holtby drew praise from head coach Todd Reirden, and with his third straight start on tap, he could retake the No. 1 job soon enough. The 30-year-old Holtby allowed exactly two goals in each of his last two starts while posting a .937 save percentage. The Golden Knights have been quite strong lately, posting 11 goals and recording a 2-0-1 record over the last three home contests.
News: Kuznetsov (upper body) has been ruled out of Monday's game versus the Golden Knights, Tom Gulitti of NHL.com reports.
Impact: Kuznetsov took line rushes and worked on the second power-play unit Sunday, so although he's getting closer, the pivot won't be ready Monday. Lars Eller is expected to remain as the team's second-line center while Kuznetsov aims to return Thursday versus the Canadiens.
News: Panik managed an assist in Saturday's 3-1 loss to the Coyotes.
Impact: Panik made a solid defensive play and relayed to Travis Boyd, who set up Carl Hagelin for the tally. The helper snapped a four-game point drought for Panik, who now has 14 points and 56 shots in 48 contests this year. He's added 61 hits, 32 PIM and a plus-10 rating in his third-lone role.
News: Boyd posted an assist and two hits in Saturday's 3-1 loss to the Coyotes.
Impact: Boyd set up Carl Hagelin for the Capitals' lone goal in the contest. The 26-year-old center has 10 points and 24 shots through 22 games this season. He's no lock for the lineup when the team is at full strength -- Boyd's played in the last two games due to Evgeny Kuznetsov's upper-body injury.
News: Hagelin potted a goal in Saturday's 3-1 loss to the Coyotes.
Impact: Hagelin's fifth goal of the season tied the game at one late in the second period. The Swede has been strong with two goals and five helpers in nine contests since the All-Star break. He's up to 18 points, 82 shots and a plus-10 rating through 47 appearances this season.
News: Holtby gave up two goals on 29 shots in a 3-1 loss to the Coyotes on Saturday.
Impact: Holtby was able to give the Capitals a chance, but fellow netminder Antti Raanta was even sturdier for the Coyotes. Holtby dropped to 21-12-4 with a 3.11 GAA and an .897 save percentage through 40 appearances this season. The 30-year-old netminder will be a risky play against the Golden Knights on Monday if he draws the start.
News: Kuznetsov (upper body) isn't expected to play against the Coyotes on Saturday, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Kuznetsov skated during Saturday's morning skate, but he didn't take line rushes and will likely miss a second straight game. Lars Eller is expected to center the second line in Kuznetsov's place, and the latter will aim to return Monday versus the Golden Knights.
News: Holtby was the first goalie off the ice during his team's morning skate and will start Saturday's game versus the Coyotes, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Holtby is coming off a 3-2 win over the Avalanche in his last start and will be looking to post back-to-back wins for the first time since the beginning of December. Arizona has only two wins in its last 10 games, so this is a good matchup for the Capitals' netminder.
News: Carlson had a pair of assists and added two shots and two blocks in Thursday's 3-2 win over Colorado.
Impact: Carlson feathered a perfect backdoor feed to Nicklas Backstrom to get the Capitals on the board in the second period, then set up Tom Wilson's game-tying goal in the third. Both assists came on the power play and gave Carlson 69 points on the season. He's been remarkably productive from start to finish in 2019-20 and has nine points (two goals, seven assists) in his last six games. Carlson had a career-high 70 points last season and that benchmark could be toast as soon as Saturday in Arizona.
News: Wilson scored a power-play goal on four shots in Thursday's 3-2 win over Colorado.
Impact: Wilson scored on a deflection with 7:12 remaining to tie the game at 2-2. It was his first goal since Jan. 29, halting a personal five-game drought. Wilson has provided 17 goals and 38 points, along with 75 PIM, in 56 games this season. He's gunning for a second straight 20-goal, 40-point campaign, with his regular helping of PIM to boot.
News: Oshie scored a goal on three shots and delivered three hits with two PIM in Thursday's 3-2 win over Colorado.
Impact: Oshie scored on a nifty deflection with 2:04 left in regulation to deliver the victory for the Capitals. It was his third straight game with a goal and pushed his season total to 22. The 33-year-old has elevated his play over the last month and change, collecting points in eight of his last 10 games (five goals, six assists). Oshie hit the 25-goal mark in three of his previous four seasons in Washington and appears poised to do so again in 2019-20.
News: Eller handed out a pair of assists and had four PIM in Thursday's 3-2 win over the Avalanche.
Impact: Eller drew the secondary helpers on Tom Wilson's game-tying and T.J. Oshie's game-winning goals in the third period. Eller has now hit the scoresheet in six of his last eight games and is three points from the career-high 38 he put up in 2017-18. The 30-year-old has consistently landed somewhere between 25 and 35 points throughout his NHL career but has a chance at a 25-goal, 50-point campaign with a strong finish.
News: Backstrom scored a power-play goal on two shots in a 3-2 win over Colorado on Thursday.
Impact: The Capitals were trailing 2-0 when Backstrom converted a backdoor feed with the man advantage at 11:37 of the second period. It was the first goal in seven games for Backstrom, who extended his point streak to four games despite the goal-scoring dry spell. The 32-year-old has 11 goals and 45 points in 49 games but owns his lowest shooting percentage (9.3) since 2013-14.
News: Holtby turned away 32 shots in a 3-2 win over Colorado on Thursday.
Impact: First-period goals by Colorado's Andre Burakovsky and Mikko Rantanen staked the Avalanche to a 2-0 lead, but Holtby and the Capitals slowly crawled their way back. For Holtby, it was a strong follow-up to his perfect relief appearance Monday and quelled the memory of his most recent start, when he allowed seven goals. Holtby improved to 21-11-4 on the season with a 3.14 GAA and .896 save percentage.
News: Holtby is set to patrol the blue paint on the road against Colorado on Thursday, per Samantha Pell of The Washington Post.
Impact: Holtby was shelled in his most recent start, as he gave up seven goals on 25 shots against the Flyers on Feb. 8. The netminder rebounded with a solid relief appearance in Monday's matchup with the Islanders, in which he stopped all 12 shots he faced. Heading down the stretch, the veteran figures to split the workload with Ilya Samsonov as coach Todd Reirden tries to figure out who should get the starting nod for Game 1 of the playoffs.
News: Kuznetsov (upper body) won't be in the lineup against Colorado on Thursday, but he will join the club on its three-game road trip, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Kuznetsov was rolling with three goals in his last five games prior to getting hurt. The center needs just one more goal to reach the 20-goal mark for the third consecutive year and fourth time overall. With the Russian unavailable, Lars Eller figures to jump into a top-six role versus the Avs.
News: Kuznetsov (upper body) is considered day-to-day ahead of Thursday's matchup with Colorado, Tom Gulitti of NHL.com reports.
Impact: Kuznetsov left Monday's matchup with the Islanders after seeing just 9:06 of ice time but appears to have avoid a significant injury. Prior to getting hurt, the center notched three goals in his previous five games and needs just one more to hit the 20-goal mark for the third straight year.
News: Fehervary was assigned to AHL Hershey on Tuesday, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Fehervary dressed in Washington's previous three contests, collecting one assist along the way, but he returns to the minors, where the defenseman has 14 points across 45 AHL contests in 2019-20.
News: Kuznetsov (upper body) will be evaluated Tuesday after leaving Monday's contest against the Islanders, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Kuznetsov was injured on a hit up against the boards during Monday's loss to the Islanders. The 27-year-old center has 46 points in 53 games this season. Should he miss any time, Lars Eller would likely be next in line for some increased playing time.
News: Holtby stopped all 12 shots in relief of starter Ilya Samsonov on Monday in a 5-3 loss to the Islanders.
Impact: Holtby entered the game midway through the second period with the Capitals already staring at a 5-1 deficit. He managed to keep the Islanders at bay the rest of the way, which was an encouraging performance after he was chased from his last start Saturday. It's been a rough season for the longtime Washington workhorse -- he's 20-11-4 but has a 3.17 GAA and .894 save percentage, both of which are the worst marks of his career.
News: Carlson registered a goal and an assist with five shots in Monday's 5-3 loss to the Islanders. He also logged a game-high 27:56 of ice time.
Impact: The dream season continues for Carlson, who now has 15 goals and 67 points in 56 games, already putting him on the verge of surpassing the career-high 70 points amassed a year ago. Carlson has seven points in his last five games (one goal, six assists) and continues to lead all NHL defensemen in scoring.
News: Oshie scored a power-play goal on two shots and racked up five hits in Monday's 5-3 loss to the Islanders.
Impact: Oshie blasted a one-timer from the left faceoff circle with 3:01 left in the second period to round out the scoring in Monday's tilt. It was his second straight game with a power-play tally and boosted his season numbers to 21 goals and 41 points in 56 games. The 33-year-old has a chance to top the career-high 60 points he had in 2013-14 with St. Louis.
News: Eller scored a goal on two shots in Monday's 5-3 loss to the Islanders.
Impact: Eller deposited a Carl Hagelin rebound in the second period to draw the Capitals to within 5-2. After recently enduring an eight-game goal drought, Eller has since found the net three times over his last four games. With 14 goals in 56 games, he's already surpassed the 13 he scored a season ago and his 33 points are five short of his career high.
News: Backstrom recorded two assists and two shots with a minus-3 rating in Monday's 5-3 loss to the Islanders.
Impact: Backstrom set up goals by John Carlson and T.J. Oshie in the first and third periods, respectively, giving him a modest three-game point streak (all assists). Backstrom has just one goal in his last 11 games, but he does have nine helpers in that time. The 32-year-old has 10 goals and 44 points in 48 games on the season, right in line with a typical Backstrom season.
News: Samsonov gave up five goals on 20 shots and was pulled midway through the second period of Monday's 5-3 loss to the Islanders.
Impact: Samsonov didn't receive much help at either end of the ice and left the game trailing 5-1. The 22-year-old has allowed nine goals over his last two starts, both losses. Despite the recent bump in the road, Samsonov still owns a 16-4-1 record with a 2.38 GAA and .917 save percentage as a rookie.
News: Samsonov is expected to get the home start for Monday's game versus the Islanders.
Impact: Samsonov sustained a head injury last week, so Braden Holtby managed the last two starts. However, Samsonov will return to the crease with the team seeking a divisional win. The 22-year-old netminder has been phenomenal this season, as he's recorded a 16-3-1 record with a .923 save percentage, while the Islanders rank 23rd with 2.50 goals per road contest.
News: The Capitals recalled Fehervary from AHL Hershey on Monday, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Fehervary was sent down Sunday to conserve some cap space, but the 2018 second-round pick is still with the big club heading into Monday's home game versus the Islanders. He has played two games in February and recorded an assist, two shots on net and seven hits.
News: The Capitals demoted Fehervary to AHL Hershey on Sunday, Samantha Pell of The Washington Post reports.
Impact: The 20-year-old had played a fairly significant role with the big club in his five games this campaign, notching an assist while averaging 16:19 of ice time. Fehervary will head back to the minors, where he's accumulated 14 points through 45 games this season.
News: Oshie scored a goal and added an assist in Saturday's 7-2 loss to the Flyers.
Impact: Oshie hit the 20-goal mark for the fourth time in the last five seasons. He's a better fit in the U.S. capital than he was in St. Louis. And he's remarkably consistent, not just in goals but also points. Oshie has put up at least 51 points in five of the last six seasons and looks poised to add 2019-20 to that list, too. Use him well.
News: Holtby was pulled after allowing seven goals on 25 shots in Saturday's 7-2 loss to the Flyers.
Impact: Every Cap was bettered by their opponent -- the Flyers were dominant. And Holtby didn't have a chance. He's 2-2 in his last four games, but what a contrast of games. In his wins, Holtby allowed just two goals in each contest. In the losses, the floodgates opened and he let in 12. He continues to have Ilya Samsonov push him and the Caps will ultimately go with the hot hand as they approach the postseason. Holtby's owners are hoping that's him, but it could be a situation where the first big falter results in a permanent change.
News: According to Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic, Holtby was the first netminder off the ice at morning skate, which suggests he'll guard the cage during Saturday's home game versus Philadelphia.
Impact: Holtby was pretty sharp in his last start Tuesday against the Kings, stopping 29 of 31 shots en route to a solid 4-2 victory. The 30-year-old backstop will attempt to pick up his 21st win of the season in a home matchup with a Flyers club that's 11-13-3 on the road this year.
News: Washington recalled Fehervary from AHL Hershey on Saturday, Stephen Whyno of the Associated Press reports.
Impact: Fehervary has been a fantastic shutdown defenseman for Hershey this season, notching four goals and 14 points while posting a plus-12 rating in 45 AHL appearances. The 20-year-old Slovakian is expected to draw into the big club's lineup immediately Saturday against the Flyers.
News: Kempny recorded three shots on net and a plus-2 rating across 23:10 in Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Kings.
Impact: Despite not posting a point in nine straight games, Kempny has maintained a decent floor in that stretch for fantasy purposes with a plus-7 rating and 15 shots on goal. The 29-year-old defenseman continues to work on the top pairing alongside John Carlson, but Kempny's fantasy value is reserved for deeper redraft leagues.
News: Samsonov (head) cleared the concussion protocol and returned to practice Wednesday, NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Even with Samsonov returning to practice, coach Todd Reirden could decide to keep him out of the crease versus the Flyers on Saturday. Considering the young netminder appeared in five of the Caps' previous eight contests, it's unlikely he will have to wait long to get his next start.
News: Oshie registered an assist and a plus-3 rating during Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Kings.
Impact: Oshie has posted four goals and 10 points in 13 games since the calendar rolled over into 2020. The 32-year-old winger is a fixture in both Washington's potent top six and the top power-play unit, so expect solid production from him the rest of the way as long as he stays healthy.
News: Hagelin tallied an assist and two penalty minutes during Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Kings.
Impact: The helper brings Hagelin to three goals and seven points in his last seven games, as Washington's third line is starting to come to life. The 31-year-old winger is worth a look in deeper formats as long as he's hot.
News: Vanecek was demoted to AHL Hershey on Wednesday.
Impact: Vanecek was up with the Capitals due to an injury to Ilya Samsonov (head). Wednesday's transaction could be an indication that the team is expecting Samsonov to at least be available as the backup for Saturday's clash with the Flyers, though Vancek could be brought back up if needed.
News: Fehervary was shipped back to AHL Hershey on Wednesday.
Impact: Fehervary played in Tuesday's clash with the Kings, in which he registered four hits, two blocks and one shot while logging 19:55 of ice time. The Caps have been going with just six blueliners on the 23-man roster this year, but they could bring Fehervary back up sooner rather than later as the need arises.
News: Carlson scored a goal and two assists in Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Kings.
Impact: The blueliner fired home the Caps' first goal in the second period, then set up Alex Ovechkin for the final two goals of a natural hat trick in the third. Carlson has four multi-point performances in the last seven games, and on the season he's piled up a remarkable 15 goals and 68 points in only 55 games.
News: Ovechkin scored three straight goals in the third period during Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Kings.
Impact: With the Caps down 2-1 just over six minutes remaining in the game, Ovechkin -- who didn't even have a shot on net to that point -- got to work, beating Jonathan Quick twice in a 70-second span before capping his evening with an empty-net tally. The future Hall of Famer has now reached 40 goals in a season for the 11th time thanks to a ridiculous stretch that has seen him light the lamp 16 times in his last 10 games. Ovechkin sits just two goals shy of 700 for his illustrious career.
News: Holtby made 29 saves in Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Kings.
Impact: The 30-year-old turned in one of his better efforts in recent weeks, but Holtby still needed a third-period hat trick from Alex Ovechkin to pick up only his third win in his last 10 outings. With Ilya Samsonov (head) currently sidelined and potentially dealing with a concussion, the door could be open for Holtby to get hot and re-establish his hold on the Caps' No. 1 job.
News: Samsonov (head) won't play in Tuesday's game versus the Kings, Harvey Valentine of NHL.com reports.
Impact: Samsonov exited morning skate after Alex Ovechkin's shot found him up high. The team is exercising caution, and Samsonov will go through concussion protocol. Vitek Vanecek was recalled from AHL Hershey to serve as Braden Holtby's backup.
News: Holtby will slide between the home goal posts Tuesday versus the Kings, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Impact: After a pair of games off, Holtby will get the call with Ilya Samsonov leaving the morning skate early for precautionary reasons. Holtby was scheduled to start anyway, but it will be Vitek Vanecek slotting in as his backup. The veteran netminder will look to bounce back after letting in five goals during his last start.
News: The Capitals will recall Vanecek from AHL Hershey on Tuesday, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Ilya Samsonov is currently going through the NHL's concussion protocol after taking a shot up high from Alex Ovechkin during morning skate, so Vanecek may need to step in and back up Braden Holtby against the Kings on Tuesday. The 24-year-old will return to the minors as soon as Samsonov is cleared to play.
News: Samsonov (head) was removed from Tuesday's morning skate as a precaution, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Samsonov was removed from morning skate after taking an Alex Ovechkin shot up high. The 22-year-old backstop is expected to be okay, but he'll still need to go through the NHL's concussion protocol before being cleared for game action. If he's unable to suit up against L.A. on Tuesday, Vitek Vanecek will back up Braden Holtby against the Kings.
News: The Capitals recalled Fehervary from AHL Hershey on Tuesday.
Impact: The 20-year-old cracked the Capitals' opening night roster and appeared in the club's first three games, registering zero points, four shots on goal and six hits in those contests before being sent down to the minors. While spending the bulk of the campaign in the AHL, Fehervary has tallied four goals and 10 assists across 45 games. Unless a member of the Capitals' blue line group is dealing with an unreported injury, Fehervary will likely serve as a seventh defenseman while he's up with Washington.
News: Vrana recorded an assist and three shots on net across 13:20 of ice time in Sunday's 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh.
Impact: Vrana racked up 13 points across 11 games in January, and he's not slowing down now that the calendar flipped. The 23-year-old has compiled 23 goals and 45 points through 53 games, and he'll easily hit career highs in both categories.
News: Gudas recorded an assist, three hits and a blocked shot across 17:38 in Sunday's 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh.
Impact: Gudas now has 15 points through 53 games. While he doesn't stack up the scoresheet, the 29-year-old maintains fantasy relevancy where physicality and defensive play is rewarded, as he has a plus-21 rating and 144 hits thus far.
News: Jensen recorded an assist and a shot across 16:25 of ice time in Sunday's 4-3 loss to the Penguins.
Impact: Jensen now has just four points, 50 shots on net and 53 blocked shots through 53 games. He starts just 47.5 percent of shifts in the offensive zone, so the lack of points isn't necessarily surprising, albeit a bit disappointing after posting 20 points last year. His fantasy value isn't salvaged by blocked shots or hits, either.
News: Kuznetsov scored a goal on three shots while dishing out three hits in Sunday's 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh.
Impact: Kuznetsov scored on a brilliant individual effort six minutes into the third period to draw the Capitals to within 3-2. He has found the net in two straight games after having gone through a nine-game goal drought. For the season, Kuznetsov has 18 goals and 45 points in 50 games and owns a career-high shooting percentage of 16.5.
News: Eller scored a pair of goals on two shots and had two PIM in Sunday's 4-3 loss to Pittsburgh.
Impact: Eller opened the scoring midway through the first period to put an end to his eight-game goal drought, then added his second of the game with just over two minutes left in regulation to draw the Capitals to within 4-3. The 11th-year NHLer is headed toward the most statistically productive season of his career, having accumulated 13 goals and 32 points in 52 games. He has a good chance to eclipse his career highs of 18 goals and 38 points that he posted in 2017-18.
News: Samsonov allowed four goals on 33 shots in Sunday's 4-3 loss to the Penguins.
Impact: Samsonov had his seven-game winning streak come to an end while allowing more than three goals for the first time since Nov. 15. He'll look to get back into the win column as early as Tuesday against Los Angeles. Samsonov is 16-3-1 in 21 appearances with a 2.12 GAA and .925 save percentage.
News: Samsonov will defend the home net Sunday versus the Penguins, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Samsonov has won seven straight games while recording a .947 save percentage and 1.57 GAA, and it looks like he's taken over the starting job from Braden Holtby with another spot start on tap. He'll need to keep it up to retain the role, but it's tough to sit a goalie that has a 16-2-1 record in his rookie campaign. The rival Penguins enter this contest with 3.17 goals per road game this year -- eighth in the league.
News: Carlson posted a pair of assists and a plus-2 rating with one shot on net, one hit and four blocks in a 5-3 victory over the Senators on Friday.
Impact: The two helpers added to Carlson's lead among all defensemen in assists with 49. He's also up to plus-18 in the rating department. Carlson could hit career highs in goals, assists, plus/minus and shots this season. He has 13 goals, 62 points, a plus-18 rating and 146 shots in 52 games this season.
News: Ovechkin scored two goals on 11 shots on net in a 5-3 victory over the Senators on Friday.
Impact: The "Great 8" is on quite a scoring spree, as he has multiple goals in four of the last five games. Since Jan. 7, Ovechkin has 13 goals in eight contests, including 11 in the past five games. With his two goals Friday, he moved past Mark Messier for eighth on the NHL's all-time goals list. He could be on his way to another Rocket Richard Trophy with 37 goals and 54 points in 51 games this season, though David Pastrnak (37 goals) and Auston Matthews (36) are keeping pace with the prolific sniper.
News: Samsonov allowed three goals on 28 shots in a 5-3 victory over the Senators on Friday.
Impact: The rookie posted a save percentage below .900 for the first time since Dec. 23, but he still won thanks to his offense. Samsonov last suffered a defeat Nov. 15. Even with him splitting the net, that's an incredibly long time for a rookie to go without a loss. He is 16-2-1 with a 2.12 GAA and .925 save percentage in 20 games this season.
News: Holtby allowed five goals on 24 shots in a 5-4 loss to Nashville on Wednesday.
Impact: Holtby was unable to build off a solid showing in Montreal. Wednesday's loss moved his record to 19-10-4 with a 3.11 GAA and a .896 save percentage, numbers far below what we've come to expect from Holtby, who continues to be challenged for starts by Ilya Samsonov.
News: Panik scored twice in Wednesday's 5-4 loss to the Predators.
Impact: The third-line winger made the most of his 10:32 of ice time Wednesday night, scoring a pair of goals. With only 12 points in 41 games, the 28-year-old's fantasy value should be limited to deeper formats.
News: Ovechkin scored a goal and had a power-play assist in Wednesday's 5-4 loss to Nashville.
Impact: The Great Eight sits in sole possession of ninth place on the all-time goals list with 693. Ovechkin passed Steve Yzerman with his 35th marker of 2019-20 before drawing the secondary assist on Tom Wilson's power-play goal midway through the second period. Ultimately, Ovi and the Caps were outscored 2-0 over the game's final 20 minutes, but Washington's captain has scored nine goals in four games.
News: Coach Todd Reirden is planning on giving Samsonov the start in goal for Friday's road game versus the Senators, Tom Gulitti of NHL.com reports.
Impact: That plan could change if Samsonov is forced into action Wednesday against Nashville, but for now it's safe to assume he'll be in goal against Ottawa. The 22-year-old Russian has been exceptional over the past month, stringing together six straight wins while posting a highly impressive 1.30 GAA and .956 save percentage. He'll look to keep rolling in a road matchup with a Senators team that's gone 1-1-3 in its last five games.
News: Holtby will tend the home twine Wednesday versus the Predators, Tom Gulitti of NHL.com reports.
Impact: Holtby had a rough stretch leading up to the All-Star break, finishing at or below an .893 save percentage in seven straight games. He seemed to bring some confidence back from the All-Star Game, though, as he steered away 31 of 33 shots in Monday's win over the Canadiens. He'll get another nod against the Preds, who have lost three of the last four and scored exactly two goals in each contest.
News: Backstrom tallied an empty-net goal and three shots during Monday's 4-2 win over the Canadiens.
Impact: Backstrom has been scorching since returning from an upper-body injury Dec. 9 with six goals and 21 points in his last 19 games. With Alex Ovechkin's suspension now over, the table is set for the 32-year-old Swede to continue racking up the points, so keep him rolling.
News: Boyd tallied a goal while logging 12:09 of ice time during Monday's 4-2 win over the Canadiens.
Impact: Boyd gave the Capitals the lead early in the second period by bouncing the puck of Canadiens defenseman Jeff Petry's boot into an open net. The 26-year-old forward has managed a respectable three goals and nine points in 20 games despite averaging just 11:36 of ice time, which would be enough to garner fantasy consideration in deeper leagues if he were seeing regular ice time. The Minnesotan is a very useful depth forward for the Capitals but is not a factor for fantasy purposes until he can secure regular playing time.
News: Leipsic registered an assist and two hits during Monday's 4-2 win over the Canadiens.
Impact: The helper is just the second point for Leipsic in nine games during the month of January. With little ice time (9:18 average) and scant production (11 points in 50 games), the 25-year-old winger fails to merit fantasy consideration at this time.
News: Eller tallied an assist, six shots and three hits during Monday's 4-2 win over the Canadiens.
Impact: The helper brings Eller to three goals and seven points in nine games during the month of January, keeping him on pace to eclipse the 40-point mark for the first time in his career. The Danish center is worth a gander in deeper leagues.
News: Wilson scored on the power play and also tallied an even-strength assist in a 4-2 win over the Canadiens on Monday.
Impact: Wilson has points in four straight games and now has 35 points total, in 49 games. The rugged winger also dished out a pair of hits in Monday's win, bringing Wilson's season hit total up to 164. Considering he does a little bit of everything, the 25-year-old is a valuable fantasy commodity in all formats.
News: Vrana finished Monday's 4-2 win over Montreal with a goal and an assist, extending his point streak to nine games.
Impact: With 42 points through 50 games, Vrana only needs six more points the rest of the season to set a new career high. The 23-year-old has been absolutely on fire since the beginning of January, racking up 11 points in nine contests to begin the calendar year.
News: Oshie collected a pair of assists in a 4-2 win over the Canadiens on Monday.
Impact: The two helpers bring Oshie's total this season to 18, along with 18 goals. With 36 points in 50 games, Oshie has been a reliable contributor in fantasy this season and figures to wind up somewhere between 50 and 60 points.
News: Holtby stopped 31 of 33 shots in a 4-2 win over Montreal on Monday.
Impact: For the first time in eight games, Holtby held an opponent to fewer than three goals, only conceding a pair of goals to the Canadiens. The victory was Holtby's 19th of the campaign and gives him an overall record in 2019-20 of 19-9-4. While his numbers aren't what we've come to expect from him, Holtby remains a solid option in goal whenever he's tabbed as Washington's starter.
News: Boyd will be in the lineup Monday against the Canadiens, Samantha Pell of The Washington Post reports.
Impact: With Richard Panik moving up to the top line while Alex Ovechkin (suspension) sits out after skipping the All-Star Game, Boyd will fill the void on the third line alongside Carl Hagelin and Lars Eller. The 26-year-old is likely to return to the press box upon Ovechkin's return and therefore possesses little fantasy upside beyond Monday's game.
News: Holtby will tend the road twine Monday versus the Canadiens, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Holtby has not finished a game with better than an .890 save percentage since Dec. 21, as he's posted an .830 save percentage, 4.53 GAA and 1-5-0 record over seven appearances. He'll need a quick turnaround to avoid losing his starting job to rookie Ilya Samsonov. It could be a tough matchup against the Habs, as they've won four of the last five games despite an average of 2.8 goals per contest.
News: Kuznetsov has no points in his last four games.
Impact: Kuznetsov was a hot commodity before things went south, as the Russian was riding a seven-game point streak prior to going cold for four straight contests. Washington visits the Canadiens on Monday, and this matchup benefits Kuznetsov. The Russian-born star scored a goal in the two teams' only other meeting this season and has 13 points in 15 career games against Montreal.
News: Per Samantha Pell of The Washington Post, Ovechkin has opted to skip the All-Star Game, which means he'll have to serve a one-game suspension Monday against Montreal.
Impact: At this stage in his career, Ovechkin is far more concerned about being healthy and well rested for the second half of the season than participating in the meaningless All-Star Game, but he'll have to accept a league-mandated one-game suspension as a result. The 34-year-old sniper will have to watch Monday's matchup with Montreal from the press box, but he'll be back in the lineup against the Predators on Wednesday.
News: Hathaway has no points in his last nine games.
Impact: The rugged winger produced well early in the season but has cooled off as of late. With just 12 points in 46 games, the 28-year-old can be safely ignored as a fantasy asset until he can rekindle his offense or secure a more meaningful offensive role.
News: Hagelin posted a goal and three shots during Saturday's 6-4 win over the Islanders.
Impact: Hagelin heads into the All-Star break with a two-game goal-scoring streak -- his first only points in eight January games. While the 31-year-old may be starting to find his rhythm on the third line, he's managed just 11 points in 38 games during an injury-shortened season and is therefore not much of a factor even in deeper fantasy formats.
News: Orlov notched two assists in Saturday's 6-4 win over the Islanders.
Impact: The veteran blueliner recorded his first multi-point effort since Dec. 21. Orlov has been overshadowed by John Carlson's huge performance so far among Caps defensemen, but his 23 points (three goals, 20 helpers) through 49 games still represent a career-best pace for the 28-year-old.
News: Carlson picked up two assists in Saturday's 6-4 win over the Islanders.
Impact: Both helpers came during a third-period comeback from a 4-1 deficit. Carlson heads into the All-Star break having found the scoresheet in four straight games, and he already has a massive 13 goals and 60 points through 49 contests.
News: Ovechkin scored three goals in Saturday's 6-4 win over the Islanders.
Impact: He opened the scoring midway through the first period, then potted two more in the third as the Caps rallied from a 4-1 deficit. Amazingly, Ovie found twine with his only three shots on the afternoon, but amazing feats are nothing new for the future Hall of Famer -- he's recorded hat tricks in back-to-back games and lit the lamp 10 times in his last six contests, and the surge has moved him into a tie with Steve Yzerman for ninth place on the NHL's all-time goal-scoring list at 692. Next up: Mark Messier in eighth with 694.
News: Samsonov stopped all seven shots he faced and picked up the win after replacing Braden Holtby to begin the third period of Saturday's 6-4 victory over the Islanders.
Impact: The Caps were down 4-1 when they made the switch in the crease, and the move paid off after their offense came to life. Samsonov is now 10-0-0 since Nov. 30, and his 2.06 GAA and .927 save percentage on the season have him putting significant pressure on Holtby for the starting job in DC.
News: Holtby allowed four goals on 22 shots before being replaced by Ilya Samsonov to begin the third period in Saturday's 6-4 win over the Islanders.
Impact: The win belongs to Samsonov, as the Caps were down 4-1 when they made the switch in the crease. Holtby still has a strong 18-9-4 record on the season, but he's now gotten the hook twice in his last seven starts while going 1-5-0 over that stretch, and his 3.09 GAA and .897 save percentage are rapidly headed in the wrong direction. The All-Star break can't come soon enough for Holtby.
News: Holtby will start between the pipes Saturday in Long Island, Rob Carlin of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Holtby has hit a major rough patch recently, allowing three or more goals in each of his last six outings. he owns a 1-5-0 record, a 4.34 GAA and an .832 save percentage over that span and the numbers are even worse on the road, so the veteran netminder may face an uphill battle to get back in the win column Saturday versus an Islanders club owning a plus-14 goal differential over 24 home games.
News: Carlson dished out two helpers -- one on the power play -- in Thursday's 5-2 win over New Jersey.
Impact: Carlson continues to lead all defensemen in points, as he's up to 58 through 48 games. He's showing no signs of slowing down, having racked up 10 assists in his last nine games.
News: Backstrom dished out two helpers -- one on the power play -- in Thursday's 5-2 win over New Jersey.
Impact: Backstrom assisted on a pair of first-period goals by Alex Ovechkin, who eventually completed the hat trick without Backstrom's help in the third. The Swedish center continues to be an effective setup man, having dished out 28 assists to go with nine goals in 40 games this season. Washington certainly believes the 32-year-old Backstrom will be able to age gracefully considering the team just handed him a five-year extension.
News: Samsonov made 32 saves in Thursday's 5-2 win over New Jersey.
Impact: Samsonov has won each of his past nine starts, as the rookie Russian continues to outperform incumbent starter Braden Holtby. He was spotted a 3-0 lead in this one 19 seconds into the second period, and while the Devils were able to pull within one goal, Samsonov held the fort long enough for Washington to pull away in this fast-paced affair.
News: Ovechkin racked up three goals -- one on the power play -- on five shots in Thursday's 5-2 win over New Jersey.
Impact: The Russian recorded his 23rd career hat trick during Thursday's game, and he's now up to 31 goals, 47 points and 219 shots through 48 games this season. Ovechkin also announced following Thursday's game that he will serve his one-game suspension for skipping the All-Star Game in the first game after the break against Montreal, per Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic. The 34-year-old is now just two goals away from passing Mario Lemieux (690 career goals) for 10th on the NHL's all-time list.
News: Samsonov will patrol the crease during Thursday's home game versus New Jersey, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Samsonov has been unstoppable since late November, registering eight consecutive wins while posting a fantastic 1.62 GAA and .939 save percentage. The 22-year-old rookie will attempt to pick up his 14th victory of the season in a favorable home matchup with a Devils team that's only averaging 2.48 goals per game on the road this campaign, 25th in the NHL.
News: Backstrom signed a five-year, $46 million contract extension with the Capitals on Tuesday,
Impact: With Backstrom's 10-year, $67 million contract set to expire at the end of the season, the Capitals have elected to keep their franchise assist leader in the fold through his age-37 campaign in 2024-25. Even as he heads into the back nine of his career, Backstrom has remained a highly productive running mate for star wing Alex Ovechkin, notching at least 50 helpers in each of the past six seasons. The extension likely ensures that the Swedish center will remain with Washington for the remainder of his storied career.
News: Ovechkin scored two goals, one on the power play, in Monday's 2-0 win over the Hurricanes.
Impact: He beat Petr Mrazek twice in a little over five minutes during the first period, supplying the only offense on the night. It's Ovechkin's second two-goal performance in the last four games, and he's racked up seven goals and 11 points in his last 12 contests. The 34-year-old is now five tallies away from passing Mario Lemieux (690 career goals) and moving into 10th place on the NHL's all-time list.
News: Samsonov stopped all 23 shots he faced in Monday's 2-0 win over the Hurricanes.
Impact: The 22-year-old seemed to be making glove saves all night long en route to his first career shutout. Samsonov hasn't lost a game in nearly two months and boasts a 2.11 GAA and .925 save percentage on the season through 17 appearances, and with Braden Holtby stuck in another mid-season malaise (3-7-0 in his last 10 games), it's fair to wonder if the Caps might start giving the youngster a bigger workload.
News: Panik (undisclosed) deemed himself ready to play Monday versus the Hurricanes, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Panik exited Saturday's 5-1 loss to the Devils in the second period, and he was initially pegged as "probable" to return. However, with the game out of hand, Panik didn't return to the ice. The 28-year-old has given himself the green light, though, so he's expected to flank the third line versus the division rival.
News: Samsonov will guard the home cage for Monday's tilt against the Hurricanes, JJ Regan of NBC Sports Washington reports.
Impact: Samsonov will give starter Braden Holtby a break Monday after Holtby started the past two contests. Samsonov has been stellar in his No. 2 role for the Capitals this season, going 12-2-1 along with a 2.25 GAA and .921 save percentage. The Russian could be busy Monday, as the Hurricanes are third in the league in shots per game this campaign (34).
News: Holtby allowed four goals on 21 shots in a 5-1 loss to the Devils on Saturday.
Impact: Holtby is 3-7-0 in 10 starts dating back to Dec. 9. Every good goalie goes through stretches and this one is a bit of doozy. Holtby has allowed four or more goals in four of his last six games and five of 10. Ilya Samsonov is breathing down his neck, so Holtby is going to have to tighten things up.
News: Panik (undisclosed) is not expected to return to Saturday's game versus the Devils, Tom Gulitti of NHL.com reports.
Impact: The team pronounced Panik "probable" for the third period, however, he's yet to take the ice. He's finished for the night, and will now hope to be good to go Monday when the Hurricanes visit.
News: Djoos (upper body) was set down to AHL Hershey on Saturday.
Impact: Djoos' demotion suggests that he's healthy enough to dress for the minor-league affiliate. He'll remain near the top of Washington's short list of potential call-ups should injuries strike on the blue line.