The SAN JOSE and the WASHINGTON will both be gunning for a victory on 12/4/2017 at 7:05 PM when they meet in a game matchup.
SAN JOSE vs WASHINGTON
When: 7:00 PM ET, Monday, December 4, 2017
Where: Captial One Arena, Washington, District of Columbia
|1||SAN JOSE||0 (-110)||5.5 120
TV: 7 p.m. ET, NHL Network, NBCSN California (San Jose), NBCSN Washington
PREDICTION: Capitals 4, Sharks 2
Oddsmakers currently have the SAN JOSE listed as 115-moneyline favorites versus the WASHINGTON, while the game’s total is sitting at 5.5.
WASHINGTON — With Braden Holtby between the pipes, the Washington Capitals feel they have a shot against any team in the NHL. That theory will be put to the test again when the San Jose Sharks come to town Monday.
The Capitals have won five of seven game, and they used another stellar performance from netminder Holtby on Saturday to down the Metropolitan Division-leading Columbus Blue Jackets 4-3. Now, Washington (15-11-1) is eager to continue testing itself against high-quality competition as it tries to become a more consistent team.
ABOUT THE CAPITALS (15-11-1): Captain Alex Ovechkin is on a hot streak with six goals in his last five games and shares the NHL lead with Tampa Bay’s Nikita Kucherov (19) while totaling 26 points. Evgeny Kuznetsov has scored three times in his last two contests and tops the team with 29 points while T.J. Oshie ranks third (23) after recording 11 over his last nine games. Defenseman John Carlson, who notched two assists on Saturday, and Nicklas Backstrom (five assists in five games) give Washington five players with at least 20 points through 27 contests.
“We’re playing some quality opponents right now,” Capitals coach Barry Trotz said. “The Kings were a quality opponent, Columbus is a quality opponent, San Jose is a quality opponent. Four of the five teams we’re up against in the next little while here are four of the top five teams in the league defensively, so it’s hard to score on those teams. We have to work for our goals.”
The Capitals will face a difficult challenge against the stingy Sharks, who are second in the NHL in goals-against (2.2 per game) and penalty-kill percentage (87.7 percent). San Jose is coming off a 5-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday, a result that ended a three-game winning streak and a 4-0-2 stretch.
“Good teams make you pay,” Sharks goalie Martin Jones said after looking solid in his return from an injury that caused him to miss two games.
The Sharks, who have been hit hard by the injury bug, know that goals likely will be at a premium. They are fine with engaging the Capitals in a defensive battle.
“We’re getting more comfortable in 2-1, 3-2 games,” San Jose coach Peter DeBoer said. “There’s no panic. That’s becoming more second nature to us. We’re not scoring five or six goals a night. We have to be comfortable in those situations.”
Forward Marcus Sorensen, who was called up from the San Jose Barracuda of the American Hockey League on Saturday, will join the team Monday to provide some injury relief. He had five goals and nine assists through 17 AHL games this season.
“He’s got some elements that we can use up here — his speed, his tenacity,” DeBoer said. “I like his game when he’s playing it.”
The visit to Washington wraps up a four-game road swing for San Jose, which is an impressive 7-3-1 away from home.
ABOUT THE SHARKS (14-9-2): Joonas Donskoi (lower body), Melker Karlsson (cut), Mikkel Boedker (lower body) and defenseman Tim Heed (upper body) all missed Saturday’s game and are considered day-to-day. Martin Jones (98 career wins) did return after missing two games with a minor injury, stopping 30-of-31 shots over the first two periods to give the Sharks a chance, prompting coach Peter DeBoer to tell reporters: “You take him for granted, but he’s been like that all year for us.” Couture has been kept off the scoresheet in his last two games but leads the team with 21 points.
Sharks forward Joe Thornton was fined $5,000 Sunday for slashing Tampa Bay’s Tyler Johnson during the Saturday game, the NHL’s Department of Player Safety announced.
Washington recalled forward Travis Boyd from AHL Hershey on Sunday. Boyd had three goals and 17 assists in 23 games at Hershey and owned the longest active streak of games played in the league at 208 straight, including playoffs.
The Capitals are hoping to keep the momentum going in the third game of their five-game homestand, with contests against the Chicago Blackhawks and New York Rangers looming.
“In order to be an elite team, we have to keep improving,” Holtby said.
1. Washington’s Chandler Stephenson (upper body) exited Saturday’s game and is day-to-day while fellow C Travis Boyd was recalled from Hershey of the American Hockey League on Sunday.
2. San Jose C Joe Thornton, who needs two points to tie Dale Hawerchuk (1,409) for 19th place on the all-time list, was fined $5,000 for a slash in Saturday’s game.
3. Capitals G Braden Holtby is 10-3-0 after a 4-3-0 start but has gone 2-4-0 with an .875 save percentage in his career versus the Sharks.
STATS AND RECORDS
|3/9/17||WAS 2||SJ 4||24||25||2-5||27||20||0-5|