Alex Ovechkin has won three MVPs and five Maurice “Rocket” Richard trophies while at least tying for the Washington Capitals’ points lead every season since he entered the league in 2005-06.
So, how is that with Ovechkin sitting third in the team’s scoring race are the Capitals off to the best start in franchise history? Most of them will have a simple answer: Braden Holtby.
The NHL’s stingiest goaltender looks to help Washington win a sixth straight home game Wednesday night against the Ottawa Senators.
The Ottawa Senators welcome back Andrew Hammond tonight who is likely to get the start in the Ottawa crease and for last year’s Cinderella story that took the entire league by storm it hasn’t been quite the repeat effort this season as he has battled injuries and trips back and forth to the minors.
The Sens sit in third place in the Atlantic division and are right in the mix for the top seed but they should have their sights set on acquiring another piece before or at the trade deadline in order to ensure they can make a deep and successful run in the postseason. Ottawa is 8-6-1 on the road this season but will face a very tough home side in Washington who are 10-3-1 at the Verizon Center and will be starting Braden Holtby who has a ridiculous goals against average of 1.87.
The Capitals have quietly pieced together a very strong start to the year and if not for a fast start from the Stars and Canadiens than perhaps they’d be the talk of the league but heading into tonight’s game they are sitting atop the Eastern Conference standings and are just four points back of the Dallas Stars. Washington has a ton of offensive fire power and an underrated defense all playing in front of Holtby who is putting up Vezina numbers this season and if they can continue to play like this in the new year they are looking like serious Cup contenders.