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5:00 PM PT6:00 PM MT7:00 PM CT8:00 PM ET1:00 GMT9:00 6:00 PM MST8:00 PM EST5:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ETNaN:� BRT, January 15, 2019
Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, Tennessee  Attendance: 17,336

Capitals, Predators out to avoid a three-game skid

Washington Capitals at Nashville Predators

  1. Washington has lost the past five meetings with Nashville, including a 6-3 loss December 31 in the first matchup this season. It is the Capitals' longest active losing streak against any opponent and the Predators' longest active win streak versus any opponent.
  2. Braden Holtby's 3.91 career goals-against average against the Predators is his second highest versus any team (Dallas, 4.01). He's allowed six goals in each of his last two games against them. Holtby is likely to play for the first time since leaving with an eye injury in the second period Saturday against Columbus.
  3. The Predators have killed only four of their opponents' nine power plays in the last three games. That 44.4 penalty-kill percentage is their worst in a three-game span since March 4-9, 2017.
  4. Washington, though, has gone six straight road games without a power-play goal, its worst drought since the 2011-12 season. The Capitals haven't had a longer such drought since going eight road games without a power-play goal late in the 1993-94 season.
  5. Filip Forsberg has scored two goals in two of his last three games, giving him 20 career multi-goal games. That's second most in Predators franchise history behind David Legwand's 24. However, Legwand needed 770 games to notch his 20th multigoal game whereas Forsberg did it in 361.
  6. T.J. Oshie is expected to play his 700th NHL game tonight. Since he joined the Capitals in 2015-16, the team is 62-5-7 when Oshie scores a goal -- best in the NHL in that span (minimum 50 games). That includes a 10-0-1 record this season.

The visiting Washington Capitals and Nashville Predators will have the same goal when meeting Tuesday night -- each wants to snap a two-game losing streak.

The usually potent Washington offense hasn't done much during its two-game skid. The Capitals scored just two goals in the past two games, a 2-1 overtime loss to Columbus on Saturday and a 4-1 home defeat against St. Louis on Monday.

When these teams last met, on Dec. 31, Nashville rallied for a 6-3 victory over the Capitals.

Even though Alex Ovechkin scored his 640th career goal in the St. Louis loss, it was not enough. Ovechkin did, though, move into a tie with Dave Andreychuk for 14th in NHL history in goals scored.

That was a power-play goal, so Ovechkin jumped past Brendan Shanahan into sixth place in that category. Ovechkin has scored 238 extra-man goals in his career.

Washington's other big milestone against the Blues came when defenseman Brooks Orpik played in his 1,000th career game.

Pheonix Copley played in goal Monday after starter Braden Holtby came out of Saturday's game when he was poked around the eye by a Columbus player. He left halfway through that contest and suited up as the back-up against the Blues.

It would seem likely that he'll start versus Nashville so that the Copley, a rookie, won't have to play on consecutive nights. Plus, Washington did not call up any other goalies.

Washington coach Todd Reirden said Monday morning the team was hoping Holtby, already picked as an All-Star, could be able to go against the Predators. Still, the team would wait and see.

Reirden also wants to see his team battle more around the crease for goals on plays in which the puck can be stuffed in from in front and knocked in on a rebound.

"For the most part, it gets to be a little more blue collar around the blue paint, (and that) is where a lot of goals come, it seems, as (the season) moves along," he said.

The Predators last played on Sunday, when Carolina handed them a 6-3 defeat. That ended a seven-game Nashville point streak.

The other loss in this brief skid was a 4-3 overtime loss to Columbus last Thursday.

Nashville's loss to Carolina ended a six-game road trip. Now, the Predators will play Washington, Winnipeg and Florida in a three-game homestand this week before heading back out on the road again next week.

Ryan Johansen tops the Predators with 32 assists and 40 points and has helped Nashville get through a few tough injury stretches to their top line as wingers Viktor Arvidsson and Filip Forsberg both missed more than a month with upper-body injuries.

"Ryan has been really good all year," Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said on NHL.com.

"He's been productive all year long, and I think it becomes a little bit more challenging when you lose your linemates like that. It didn't matter to him, and he worked to make our team successful and to make players on the ice around him better as well."

Nashville also made a move Monday when it traded forward Connor Brickley to the New York Rangers in exchange for forward Cole Schneider. Schneider, 28, was second in points (25) with Hartford of the American Hockey League this year. He has played in six career NHL games.

--Field Level Media

Updated January 14, 2019

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