Preview: Capitals @ Panthers, 12/10/15

Game #29
Washington Capitals (19-5-2 / 40 PTS) @ Florida Panthers (13-11-4 / 30 PTS)
Thursday, December 10th, 2015 – 7:30 PM EST
BB&T Center – Sunrise, FL

Projected Line Combinations

Florida_Panthers.svg VS.
11 Huberdeau – 16 Barkov – 68 Jagr L1 8 Ovechkin – 19 Backstrom – 77 Oshie
73 Pirri – 21 Trocheck – 18 Smith L2 90 Johansson – 92 Kuznetsov – 14 Williams
 42 Howden – 63 Bolland – 86 Brickley L3 25 Chimera – 83 Beagle – 43 Wilson
36 Jokinen – 17 MacKenzie – 48 Shaw L4 65 Burakovsky – 21 Laich – 46 Latta
51 Campbell – 33 Mitchell D1 88 Schmidt – 74 Carlson
Ekblad – 3 Kampfer D2 27 Alzner – 2 Niskanen
Kulikov – 44 Gudbranson D3 9 Orlov – 4 Chorney
35 Montoya G1 31 Grubauer
1 Luongo G2 70 Holtby
Bjugstad, Thornton X  Galiev, Brown, Orpik, Ness, Stephenson
 Petrovic, Savard, Hodges IR Brown

Top 5 Scorers

Florida Panthers

Player Goals Assists Points
1. Jaromir Jagr 8 12 20
2. Jussi Jokinen 6 12 18
3. Vincent Trocheck 8 8 16
4. Jonathan Huberdeau 3 12 15
5. Reilly Smith 7 7 14

Washington Capitals

Player Goals Assists Points
1. Evgeny Kuznetsov 8 19 27
2. Alex Ovechkin 13 11 24
3. Nicklas Backstrom 9 14 23
4. John Carlson 4 15 19
5. Justin Williams 8 10 18

Expected Starting Goaltenders

Florida Panthers

Name Record Save % GAA
Roberto Luongo 10-9-3 .923 2.36

Washington Capitals

Name Record Save % GAA
Brayden Holtby 12-7-3 .928 1.95

Between the Lines

The Panthers will play their final game of this short 2-game homestand on Thursday night against the Capitals after anothetough loss on Tuesday to the Senators. The Panthers played a strong first and second period as they took the lead twice thanks to Logan Shaw’s first career NHL goal and a sweet backhander by Reilly Smith, but the Senators came out stronger in the third. The Panthers were not as good on the penalty kill as they had been of late and the Senators took advantage of that by scoring twice on the power play and another shorthanded with Roberto Luongo pulled. It ended up being the Panthers’ 2nd straight loss after winning 5 straight just before that.

Gerard Gallant announced today the Nick Bjugstad would not be traveling with the Panthers on their road-trip which begins Saturday in Boston against the Bruins, however the team is hopeful that he’ll join them midway through. The team is still not saying what is wrong with Bjugstad, although sources told George Richards of the Miami Herald that it is not a concussion. Alex Petrovic is expected to begin skating later this week.

The Capitals are coming off a win against the Red Wings and are now 8-1-1 in their last 10 games. Marcus Johansson has 6 points in his last 5 games, Nicklas Backstrom has 5 points in his last 5 games, and Alex Ovechkin has 4 points in his last 5 games. Goaltender Braden Holtby has allowed 2 goals or less in 8 of his last 10 games while going 9-0-1 in that span.

Last Game Played

The Panthers faced the Senators on Tuesday for their 28th game of the season and lost 4-2. You can find our recap by clicking here, and the NHL recap can be found below:

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