Washington Capitals: A Look Inside the Nation’s Training Camp

The Washington Capitals won the Stanley Cup Title in 2017-2018. After they won the title, Barry Trotz decided not to come back as the head coach. Trotz took the New York Islanders heading coach job. Todd Reidren took over as the head coach for Washington.

It appeared as if the Capitals were going to make another deep postseason run last year, but they lost forward T.J. Oshie in Game 4 in the first-round against the Carolina Hurricanes. Washington held a 2-0 series lead on Carolina last season, but the Washington Capitals lost in seven games in double overtime.

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It was very stunning for them and this could be an interesting season ahead for Washington. They have the talent to get back to the Stanley Cup Finals, but they could face other obstacles in the road.

Center Evgeny Kuznetsov has been banned for four years from the IIHF because of cocaine. He will not be suspended during the NHL season, but Kuznetsov will be talking with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman about this.

He is one of the most players important on this team.  In 76 games played last season, Evgeny Kuznetsov scored 21 goals and recorded 51 assists. His plus/minus was 7.

The projected starting lines for this team will be Alexander Ovechkin-Evgeny Kuznetsov-Tom Wilson, Jakub VranaNicklas Backstrom-T.J. Oshie, Carl HagelinLars EllerRichard Panik, and Brendan LeipsicNic DowdGarnet Hathaway.

The projected defensive pairings will be Michal Kempny and John Carlson, Dmitri Orlov and Nick Jensen, and Jonas Siegenthaler and Radko Gudas.

Braden Holtby will be the starting goalie. Phoenix Copley will be the backup goalie.

Some of the potential players that could step up in case of injury will be Travis Boyd, Chandler Stephenson, and Christian Djoos.

One of the prospects they should keep an eye on during training camp is goalie Ilya Samsonov. Samsonov might need to prove himself during training camp this season because Holtby’s contract is expiring after the season. It will be interesting to see how long they would re-sign him for.

The Seattle Expansion Draft is happening in the summer of 2021. That could potentially be a Marc-Andre Fleury and Matt Murray situation like Pittsburgh had in 2017 with the Vegas Expansion Draft.

The Washington Capitals could very well win the division title for the fifth consecutive season. The Pittsburgh Penguins will be around. The New Jersey Devils and the New York Rangers got better. The Philadelphia Flyers, the New York Islanders, the Columbus Blue Jackets, and the Carolina Hurricanes won’t be bad either.

If Washington does not make a deep playoff run, it will be interesting to see what they do with the roster after the season and potentially the coaching staff as well. It felt weird that the Capitals and the Penguins did not meet in the playoffs after playing each other for the last three seasons before that.

They have not announced a training camp date yet. Washington will begin preseason play at home on Monday, September 16 against the Chicago Blackhawks. The Washington Capitals will begin the season on the road against the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday, October 2. Washington will have their home opener on Saturday, October 5 against the Carolina Hurricanes.

How do you see the 2019 season for the Washington Capitals? Leave a comment below.

Ice the puck over to IroniqMedia for all of your NHL coverage.

Follow Glenn on Twitter @glennkaplan13.

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