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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, April 10th (All times Eastern)

Washington Capitals (36-30-13) at Carolina Hurricanes (34-34-11), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Washington Capitals will play for pride and a third straight victory on Thursday when they visit the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena.

Washington was officially eliminated from playoff contention Wednesday after the Detroit Red Wings and Columbus Blue Jackets clinched the Eastern Conference's final two postseason berths. The Capitals will miss the postseason tournament for the first time since 2007.

Carolina was knocked out of playoff consideration earlier and hasn't made the postseason since 2009.

The Capitals are coming off two straight wins, but the modest streak came on the heels of an 0-3-2 stretch that dealt a serious blow to the club's postseason chances.

Washington last played on Tuesday when Alex Ovechkin scored his 50th goal of the season and added two assists to help the club down the St. Louis Blues, 4-1.

Ovechkin recorded his fifth season of 50 goals or more to become the fifth player in NHL history to post at least five 50-goal seasons in his first nine campaigns. The other players on that list are Mike Bossy, Wayne Gretzky, Guy Lafleur and Brett Hull.

Still, the individual achievement is likely little consolation for the Russian sniper, who has been criticized often during a trying season in which he is sporting a minus-34 rating.

Nicklas Backstrom added two goals on Tuesday and Mikhail Grabovski also scored in the win. Braden Holtby had 28 saves in the win as the Caps swept the two- game season series with St. Louis.

Washington is 2-1-0 on a four-game road trip that ends tonight and the club is 16-17-7 as the guest this season. The Caps will cap their season this weekend with a two-game homestand against Chicago and Tampa Bay.

Carolina enters Thursday having lost two straight and four of its last six games.

The Hurricanes dropped a 4-1 decision Tuesday in New York City, as Brad Richards scored a pair of power-play goals to help lead the Rangers to the easy win at Madison Square Garden.

Patrick Dwyer accounted for the lone Carolina goal and Cam Ward finished with 32 saves in the loss, which officially eliminated the Hurricanes from postseason consideration.

"I thought three of the four goals that they scored were too easy," Ward said.

Anton Khudobin will get the start in net for Carolina. He is 3-0 with a 1.99 goals against average and .943 save percentage in three career games against the Caps.

Carolina has won three of four meetings against the Capitals in 2013-14 after Washington claimed the final three encounters of last season's series. The Caps have won three in a row and seven of their past nine tilts in Raleigh, N.C.

04/10 10:55:59 ET

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Ovechkin nets 50th, adds assist, Capitals top Hurricanes 4-2

Alex Ovechkin smiled that gap-toothed grin of his while standing for a commemorative photo in the locker room, holding the puck he put in the net a couple of hours earlier for his NHL-leading 50th goal.

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
WAS 4
CAR 2
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
DET
 
Final
TAM 8
BOS 11
Final
STL 2
MIA 3
Final
WAS 0
NYM 2
Final
MIN 3
NYY 1
Final
DET 3
PIT 7
Final
BAL 3
TAM 4
Final
TOR 10
PHI 6
Final
TEX 10
CHC 15
Final
LOS 1
CWS 2
Final
MIL 4
CIN 10
Final
SFG 4
COL 3
Final
CLE 8
SEA 6
Final
ANA 10
OAK 13
Final
ARI 8
TEX 7
Final
ATL 5
HOU 8
Final
SDP 1
KAN 4
1:05pm Today
PHI
ATL
 
1:05pm Today
MIN
BOS
 
1:05pm Today
HOU
DET
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
TAM
 
1:05pm Today
BOS
TOR
 
1:05pm Today
MIA
WAS
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
STL
 
3:05pm Today
OAK
ANA
 
3:05pm Today
KAN
LOS
 
4:05pm Today
CIN
ARI
 
4:05pm Today
SEA
CWS
 
4:05pm Today
SFG
CLE
 
4:05pm Today
CHC
MIL
 
4:05pm Today
CWS
SDP
 
4:10pm Today
COL
TEX
 
7:05pm Tonight
BAL
PIT
 
Final
DET 105
ATL 95
Final
BRK 111
IND 106
Final
MIA 81
SAN 95
Final
LAC 106
GSW 110
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
DET
 
7:00pm Tonight
WAS
PHI
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
SAN
 
7:30pm Tonight
NYK
BRK
 
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
IND
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIL
CHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
DAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
SAC
 
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MIN
TOR
 
9:00pm Tonight
UTA
DEN
 
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POR
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
NOP
 
Final
TEMPL 57
MIAMI 60
Final
EVAN 79
TENNM 66
Final
NARZ 68
YALE 61
Final
ODU 60
STAN 67
8:00pm Tonight
LAMON
LOYC
 
Final
WAS 4
CAR 2
Final
BOS 3
FLA 2
Final
CLB 3
NJD 2
Final
DET 1
OTT 2
Final
TOR 3
TAM 1
Final
WIN 2
NYR 3
Final
NAS 4
VAN 5
7:30pm Tonight
BUF
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
PIT
PHI
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
EDM
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
COL