Capitals Game Day
Capitals vs. Sabres: Lines, Ovechkin In, Playoff Implications
The Washington Capitals will be back in action against the Buffalo Sabres and get back Alex Ovechkin. Here are lines, key stats to know and much more.
WASHINGTON — After a disappointing 5-3 loss following a rough start and too little, too late rally in the final 40 minutes against the New York Rangers, the Washington Capitals are back on home ice as they continue the playoff push against another New York-based team in the Buffalo Sabres. They'll get a boost, too, as Alex Ovechkin will be back in the mix.
Here is everything to know ahead of puck drop.
Washington Capitals vs. Buffalo Sabres: Ovechkin & Milano Updates
Ovechkin, who was dealing with a lower-body injury, is back in. He did not play in Tuesday's loss to New York but was on the trip and had taken a maintenance day on Monday. Ovechkin last skated on Saturday against the New York Islanders, where he picked up an assist in a 5-1 win.
Without Ovechkin in the mix, Washington is 0-6-0 this season and has dropped the last nine games overall with No. 8 on the sidelines.
In other news, Sonny Milano, who missed Tuesday's game with a non-COVID illness, will be out again on Wednesday as he continues to rest and recover.
Washington Capitals vs. Buffalo Sabres: Lines
Here are the line combinations:
Alex Ovechkin-Evgeny Kuznetsov-Tom Wilson
Anthony Mantha-Nicklas Backstrom-Craig Smith
Conor Sheary-Dylan Strome-T.J. Oshie
Aliaksei Protas-Nic Dowd-Nicolas Aube-Kubel
Rasmus Sandin-Trevor van Riemsdyk
Martin Fehervary-Nick Jensen
Alex Alexeyev-Matt Irwin
Charlie Lindgren will get the start after Darcy Kuemper played on Tuesday. It marks Lindgren's first appearance since Feb. 26 against Buffalo, where he came in relief of Kuemper, and his first start since Feb. 23 against the Anaheim Ducks.
Puck drop is at 7 p.m. ET at Capital One Arena.
Washington Capitals vs. Buffalo Sabres: Playoff Implications
Here is a look at the standings, which did not change on Tuesday with the New York Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins losing in regulation. Washington remains five points out of a spot and is tied in the race with the Sabres, who also sit at 71 points this season. So, in terms of the playoff race, it's a must-win. The Islanders are also in action and will play the Anaheim Ducks in a key game that could put them seven points (or six depending on overtime) ahead of the loser of Wednesday's game in D.C.
None of the other competitiors (Florida, Ottawa, Detroit) are in action.
Additional Ice Chips/Key Stats
– Dylan Strome is on a five-game point streak.
– T.J. Oshie has points in three straight and eight of his last nine outings overall.
– Rasmus Sandin now has points in all but one game since joining D.C. and has nine points in five games so far with the Capitals.