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Capitals Game Day

Capitals vs. Hurricanes: Lines, Tale of the Tape, Players To Watch

The Washington Capitals will be shorthanded as they go up against the Carolina Hurricanes. Lines, tale of the tape, key stats, who to watch and everything to know before puck drop.



WASHINGTON — The Washington Capitals will be shorthanded and if for a challenge on Tuesday as they look to bounce back against the Carolina Hurricanes before both teams meet again outdoors at the 2023 Stadium Series on Saturday.

Here is everything to know ahead of puck drop.

Washington Capitals vs. Carolina Hurricanes: Lines

The Capitals will be without the services of Alex Ovechkin, who will not be with the team in the "foreseeable future" as he attends to a family matter/the health of a loved one. Ovechkin's absence will be a tough void to fill, and head coach Peter Laviolette made quite a few tweaks to accommodate for his absence.

Anthony Mantha will return from illness that held him out on Sunday, and Aliaksei Protas will remain in the mix.

Here's a look at the lines from morning skate:

Aliaksei Protas-Dylan Strome-T.J. Oshie

Anthony Mantha-Evgeny Kuznetsov-Conor Sheary

Sonny Milano-Nicklas Backstrom-Marcus Johansson

Nicolas Aube-Kubel-Lars Eller-Garnet Hathaway

Erik Gustafsson-Trevor van Riemsdyk

Dmitry Orlov-Nick Jensen

Matt Irwin-Martin Fehervary

Joe Snively, who is up from Hershey with Ovechkin out, and Alex Alexeyev are the healthy scratches. Nic Dowd and Tom Wilson remain out with lower-body injuries and are on the injured reserve.

Darcy Kuemper will start against Carolina.

Washington Capitals vs. Carolina Hurricanes: Tale of the Tape

Washington (28-21-6) is coming off a lackluster 4-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks on Sunday, which came just 22 hours after a dominant, convincing 2-1 win over the league-best Boston Bruins. The Capitals have continued to struggle in the goal-scoring department, and dating back to Jan. 6, have only averaged 2.19 goals per 60 minutes, the second-lowest total in the league over that span. Washington will have to look to all four lines to generate on Tuesday with Ovechkin out and not expected to return for this week and possibly longer, and the power play needs to find its spark as well as the woes continue on the man advantage.

Key stats for Washington: 20.2 PP% (20th), 81.8 PK% (7th), 3.05 GF/G (21st), 2.80 GA/G (11th)

The Hurricanes (34-10-8) have dominated this season and hold the Metro Division lead. They have won seven of their last eight games and are 8-1-1 in their last 10, with their only regulation loss coming in a 5-2 defeat against the New York Rangers back on Saturday. Rod Brind'Amour's club features an impressive arsenal with a lot of young, fast talent, and Carolina can make a lot happen and gives up very little as well. However, the Canes also have their share of power-play problems.

Key stats for Carolina: 19.8 PP% (22nd), 81.5 PK% (8th), 3.31 GF/G (11th), 2.69 GA/G (7th)

Washington Capitals vs. Carolina Hurricanes: Players To Watch

Evgeny Kuznetsov has points in three of his last four games and goals in two of his last three. Erik Gustafsson also has three points in his last three games. Also keep an eye on Nicklas Backstrom, who has two goals, an assist and a shootout winner over his last five games. In addition, Anthony Mantha will be in a spot similar to where Alex Ovechkin usually draws in, so he'll look to make an impact as he gets back in and seeks confidence following a rough go of it in January.

For the Hurricanes, Martin Necas has been having a stellar season and leads the team with 47 points through 52 games. He has points in five of his last six and six of his last eight overall, with eight points in that span. Sebastian Aho is producing at over a point-per-game pace and has points in six of his last seven, with nine points over that period. Meanwhile, Andrei Svechnikov is riding a three-game point streak and has points in four of his last five outings. Also keep an eye on Brent Bruns, Jordan Staal and more.

How To Tune In

Local Capitals fans can tune in on NBC Sports Washington or listen on 106.7 The Fan or Caps Radio 24/7. Carolina fans can watch on Bally Sports South or listen on 99.9 The Fan ESPN Radio.

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