|5:00 PM PT6:00 PM MT7:00 PM CT8:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)20:00 ETNaN:� BRT, October 10, 2018
Capital One Arena, Washington, District of Columbia Attendance: 18,506
Golden Knights, Capitals meet in Stanley Cup Finals rematch
Vegas Golden Knights at Washington Capitals
- This game will be a rematch of last season's Stanley Cup Final. In four of the last five seasons, the defending Cup champ has won in its first meeting against its Stanley Cup opponents (the Kings lost to the Rangers in their first matchup of the 2014-15 season).
- The Golden Knights fell to the Sabres, 4-2, in Buffalo on Monday, dropping to 1-2-0 on the season. Last year, the Knights didn't lose their second game until October 30, when they fell to 8-2-0.
- Jonathan Marchessault scored for Vegas in the loss to Buffalo, giving him four points (2g, 2a) in three games this season. Last year, he had 75 points in 77 games, after combining for 70 points in his first 124 career games.
- The Golden Knights won both regular season matchups with the Capitals last season by a combined 7-3, and took Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final, 6-4, before losing four straight games in which they were outscored 16-8.
- After opening the season with a 7-0 thrashing of the Bruins at home, the Capitals fell to the Penguins, 7-6 in overtime, in Pittsburgh on Thursday. Since the 2011-12 season, Washington has played in just two games with at least 12 combined goals; both have come against the Penguins (also January 16, 2017).
- T.J. Oshie had two goals and an assist in the loss to Pittsburgh after opening with a goal and an assist in the win over Boston. This is just the second time in his career he's had more than two points after two games -- he had three in the 2012-13 season.
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WASHINGTON -- It will be a Stanley Cup Finals rematch when the Vegas Golden Knights visit the Washington Capitals on Wednesday night.
The Capitals defeated the Knights in five games last spring to win their first-ever Cup and end the expansion Knights' Cinderella season.
It's too early to call this year a sophomore slump, but the Knights have wobbled out of the gate 1-2. Vegas lost 4-2 to the Baffalo Sabres on Monday night in the second stop of a five-game road trip despite outshooting the Sabres 37-17.
"Too many (Grade A chances) obviously," Knights forward Max Pacioretty told NHL.com. "You know, we limited them to a low number of shots, however, the shots that they did get were Grade A opportunities. We can't leave our goaltender out to dry like that."
Jonathan Marchessault had a goal and an assist for the Knights.
Vegas, which is 0 of 8 on the power play thus far, didn't pick up its second loss until the 10th game of last season and now faces back-to-backs against the Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins.
"They're the Stanley Cup champs," Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant said of the Capitals. "We look at this game (Wednesday) night, it's a big challenge for our group so we'll get ready to play them. We know them, they know us real well, so hopefully it'll be a good game and we'd like to come out on top."
Washington (1-0-1) comes into the game well rested, with five days off since dropping a 7-6 overtime decision to the Pittsburgh Penguins after blanking the Boston Bruins 7-0 on opening night.
While Gallant somewhat downplayed the rematch in terms of its meaning beyond two points in the standings, new Capitals coach Todd Reirden expects an intense affair.
"Obviously, through a five-game series you develop a little bit of hatred for certain guys, so it's always nice to get back in to that sort of rivalry that we've developed with them," he said. "I think it'll be good for our team -- especially after five days -- to help us get right into the game and know it's going to be a competitive situation with a real hungry team that's looking to knock us off."
Reirden will have two additions to his lineup Wednesday night.
Defenseman Michal Kempny, who missed the first two games with a concussion, is set to return and be paired with John Carlson.
"I never had a concussion before, so I didn't know what to expect," Kempny said. "Some headaches, and it was something a little bit weird, but then I felt a better and better every day."
Forward Dmitrij Jaskin, who was claimed on waivers from the St. Louis Blues just before the season began, will make his Washington debut skating on the fourth line with center Nic Dowd and Devante Smith-Pelly.
For the Knights, forward Cody Eakin, who has been out with a lower body injury, could return. He provided 11 goals and 16 assists in 80 games last season.
Capitals goalie Braden Holtby pitched a shutout opening night before surrendering seven goals against the Penguins. Holtby allowed eight goals versus the Knights in the final four games of last spring's finals as Washington rallied from a 1-0 deficit.
Marc-Andre Fleury has a 3.93 goals-against average in two-plus games this season. He surrendered four goals per game to Washington in the Cup finals.
Updated October 10, 2018