It might be way too early to call tonight’s Caps-Flyers game an Eastern Conference finals preview, but anything’s possible and both teams head into tonight’s game playing as good as it gets this season. The Capitals are 5-0-0 while the Flyers are 4-0-1, both teams combining to earn 19 of a possible 20 points this season.
The juxtaposition of each team is great. The Caps are winning without Alex Ovechkin playing like one of the world’s best players. Instead it’s a team effort that sees guys like Marcus Johansson and Jason Chimera pouring in goals while Tomas Vokoun holds it down in goal. For Philly, it’s all about Claude Giroux offensively and Ilya Bryzgalov in goal to stop the opponents.
Making the game all the more fun is seeing Jaromir Jagr facing off against one of his former teams. Jagr has looked great this season and while we’re still waiting for the goals to come, he’s been a boon to their power play. The play of rookie Matt Read has also been a huge boost for the Flyers and he’s second on the team in points.
Washington’s success will be spurred on by the play of their blue line. Dennis Wideman and Mike Green have been playing like the point producers they’re meant to be while Karl Alzner has been a surprise. Also look out for former Flyer Mike Knuble as he’s had a great start to his season.
In the grand scheme of things this is just another game, but with both teams playing so well, this one will have a playoff-level intensity to it.
For the Washington perspective on things, CSNWashington.com’s Chase Hughes and Chuck Gormley break down tonight’s game.
Derek Roy will continue his pro career overseas, as he has signed a contract with Bern in the Swiss League.
Roy attended training camp on a professional tryout with the Washington Capitals, but he was unable to claim a spot on their roster.
The 32-year-old had some great years in the NHL, but since the 2011-12 season Roy had suited up for six different teams (excluding his PTO with the Caps).
His best season came in 2007-08 when he scored 32 goals and 81 points in 78 games with the Buffalo Sabres.
Roy will leave the NHL with 189 goals and 524 points in 738 career games.
He will join former NHLers Cory Conacher, Andrew Ebbett, Chuck Kobasew, Simon Moser and Sean Bergenheim in Bern.
They’re just one game into their regular season, but the Buffalo Sabres have already had to shift things around in their crease.
The Sabres announced that they have placed starting goaltender Robin Lehner on injured reserve after he was knocked out of Thursday’s game with a lower-body injury.
In a corresponding move, the club has recalled Nathan Lieuwen from their AHL affiliate in Rochester.
The 24-year-old didn’t play in the NHL last season, but he did have a 1-4-0 record with a 2.98 goals-against-average and a .906 save percentage in seven games during the 2013-14 season.
Lieuwen was Buffalo’s sixth round pick, 167th overall, in the 2011 draft.
The Sabres also announced that they have loaned defenseman Jake McCabe and goaltender Linus Ullmark to the Rochester Americans (AHL).
McCabe was a healthy scratch in Thursday’s game against Ottawa, while Ullmark is being activated off I.R. after having double hip surgery during the off-season.