Thursday, December 18, 2008

Game #33 St. Louis Blues at Washington Capitals

Where: Verizon Center, Washington, DC

When: December 18, 2008, 7:00 PM

History:
Caps Record on this Date: 7-6-1-0
Caps Game 33 Record: 17-10-6-0
All-Time vs. STL: 34-36-12-0
All-Time home vs. STL: 21-14-4-0
Last Season vs. STL: 0-1-0
Last Meeting: 10/27/07, WAS 3 STL 4

This Year:
WAS Record: 19-10-3
Standings Points: 41
Division Rank: 1st
Conference Rank: 3rd
Last Game: 12/16/08, WAS 5 NYI 4 (OT)
Streak: Win 4

STL Record: 12-15-3
Standings Points: 27
Division Rank: 5th
Conference Rank: 15th
Last Game: 12/16/08, STL 3 CAL 6
Streak: Loss 4

Probable Line-Ups:
Washington
Forward Line 1: 8 OVECHKIN, 19 BACKSTROM, 28 SEMIN
Forward Line 2: 14 FLEISCHMANN, 92 NYLANDER, 25 KOZLOV
Forward Line 3: 21 LAICH, 15 GORDON, 10 BRADLEY
Forward Line 4: 87 BRASHEAR, 39 STECKEL, 33 GIROUX
Defense Pair 1: 52 GREEN, 26 MORRISONN
Defense Pair 2: 63 COLLINS, 3 POTI
Defense Pair 3: 23 JURCINA, 47 ALZNER
Goalie: 1 JOHNSON
Back-up Goalie: 40 VAMARLOV

St. Louis
Forward Line 1: 42 BACKES, 7 TKACHUK, 22 BOYES
Forward Line 2: 57 PERRON, 21 BERGLUND, 15 WINCHESTER
Forward Line 3: 20 STEEN, 18 MCCLEMENT, 26 CROMBEEN
Forward Line 4: 55 JANSSEN, 25 STASTNY, 13 HINOTE
Defense Pair 1: 5 JACKMAN, 46 POLAK
Defense Pair 2: 28 COLAIACOVO, 29 WOYWITKA
Defense Pair 3: 43 WEAVER, 53 JUNLAND
Goalie: 50 MASON
Back-up Goalie: 30 BISHOP

Injuries:
Washington – 2 POTHIER (concussion) IR, 91 FEDOROV (ankle) DTD, 55 SCHULTZ (broken finger) IR, 4 ERSKINE (undisclosed) DTD, 17 CLARK (forearm) IR, 89 SLOAN (foot) DTD, 16 FEHR (shoulder) DTD, 60 THEODORE (hip flexor) DTD
St. Louis – 34 LEGACE (concussion) IR, 4 BREWER (upper body) IR, 6 JOHNSON (torn ACL) IR, 77 MCKEE (fractured finger) IR, 10 MCDONALD (broken leg) IR, 74 OSHIE (ankle) IR, 9 KARIYA (lower body) IR, 19 KING (shoulder) IR

Caps Milestones:
Brooks Laich needs 6 points to reach 100 in his career.
Mike Green needs 9 points to reach 100 in his career.
Tom Poti needs 10 points to reach 300 in his career.
Chris Clark needs 4 penalty minutes to reach 600 in his career.

Preview:
In Tuesday’s game, the Caps thought they had won the game in the second period. Hopefully they learned that even when playing teams that are not as talented they still need to work for every victory. Tonight’s game is with the last place team in the Western Conference but St. Louis has beaten the likes of Minnesota, Phoenix and Nashville all teams that gave the Capitals trouble this season. While I expect a victory, playing the Blues is not like going on a windy walk. Look for the Caps to work extremely hard and the power play to be more direct. Also, watch for the second line to generate some points. I think this will be very physical and a good win for the team.

Joe’s prediction: Caps 5 STL 3

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