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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Wednesday, November 20th (All times Eastern)

Pittsburgh Penguins (13-8-0) at Washington Capitals (12-8-1), 8 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The top two teams in the Metropolitan Division will clash Wednesday evening in D.C. as the Washington Capitals welcome the Pittsburgh Penguins for a battle at the Verizon Center.

With 26 points on a 13-8-0 record, Pittsburgh is just one point ahead of the streaking Capitals for first place in the Metro, the newly-named division that makes up half of the realigned Eastern Conference.

This is the first of four scheduled meetings between the Pens and Caps during the 2013-14 regular season. Pittsburgh enters Wednesday on a four-game winning streak in this series and also has taken three of the past five meetings in the nation's capital.

Washington, however, is coming off its third straight victory and can match a season-best winning streak with another triumph in tonight's divisional matchup.

The Capitals opened November with four consecutive wins, but then dropped two in a row before getting back on track with their current hot streak. Washington has scored four goals in each of its wins during the three-game stretch and the club last played on Sunday when it downed the visiting St. Louis Blues by a 4-1 count.

Alex Ovechkin continued his terrific start to the season with a two-goal performance against the Blues. The Russian superstar has 17 goals on the season, tying him with Alexander Steen of St. Louis for the NHL lead. Ovechkin, of course, led the league with 32 goals in 48 games last season and won his third Hart Trophy at the end of the lockout-shortened campaign.

Ovechkin enters Wednesday on a three-game goal-scoring streak and has four markers during that stretch. The 28-year-old winger has registered 22 goals and 40 points in 31 career games against the Penguins.

John Carlson and Mikhail Grabovski each scored a goal while Nicklas Backstrom posted three assists for the Capitals on Sunday. Braden Holtby made 46 stops to earn the win.

"I think we've been playing decent hockey and hopefully we'll continue to grow," said Washington head coach Adam Oates.

The Capitals have won six straight home games and haven't been defeated in D.C. since dropping a 2-0 decision against the New York Rangers on Oct. 16.

Pittsburgh enters Wednesday's showdown having won two of its past three games, but the club is just 2-4-0 since winning four in a row from Oct. 28-Nov. 2.

The Pens last played on Monday when they recorded a 3-1 home victory over the Anaheim Ducks. Brian Gibbons, Brandon Sutter and Sidney Crosby each scored third-period goals to back 27 saves from Marc-Andre Fleury in the triumph at CONSOL Energy Center.

Gibbons, making his NHL debut after being recalled from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the AHL on Monday, added an assist on Sutter's marker that came just 62 seconds after the rookie snapped a scoreless tie. Evgeni Malkin delivered a pair of helpers for the Penguins, who had registered only eight goals in dropping four of their previous five coming into Monday's tilt.

"I think I am just taking it all in right now," Gibbons said. "I don't usually show a lot of emotion, but on the inside I am really happy."

Crosby is tied with Steen for the NHL lead in points with 26. Like Ovechkin, Crosby has fared well in tonight's matchup during his career, posting 14 goals and 43 points in 25 career games against the Capitals.

Fleury is 13-7-2 with a 2.60 goals against average in 23 career games against Washington. Holtby is 0-3-0 with a 4.53 GAA in three outings versus the Pens.

Capitals defenseman Mike Green has missed the past two games with a lower-body issue, but was able to practice on Tuesday. However, he may need a little more time to get into game shape before returning.

11/20 10:34:24 ET

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Schedule

Sunday, April 20Full Scoreboard
Philadelphia «4Final | Box
NY Rangers2Rink Replay
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Two. Series tied, 1-1.
Detroit1Final | Box
Boston «4Rink Replay
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Two. Series tied, 1-1.
Tampa Bay2Final | Box
Montreal «3Rink Replay
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Three. Montreal leads series, 3-0.
Los Angeles21st Prd 8:40 | Box
San Jose0@theRink | TV: NBCSN, CBC, FSN-W
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Two. San Jose leads series, 1-0.
Full Scoreboard

Standings

2013 - 2014 NHL Eastern Conference Standings
 
Atlantic Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
p-Boston 54 19 9 117 261 177 31-7-3 23-12-6 18-9-3
x-Tampa Bay 46 27 9 101 240 215 25-10-6 21-17-3 19-8-3
x-Montreal 46 28 8 100 215 204 23-13-5 23-15-3 18-8-4
x-Detroit 39 28 15 93 222 230 18-13-10 21-15-5 17-8-5
Ottawa 37 31 14 88 236 265 18-17-6 19-14-8 14-9-7
Toronto 38 36 8 84 231 256 24-16-1 14-20-7 14-13-3
Florida 29 45 8 66 196 268 16-20-5 13-25-3 13-16-1
Buffalo 21 51 10 52 157 248 13-21-7 8-30-3 7-18-5
 
Metropolitan Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Pittsburgh 51 24 7 109 249 207 28-9-4 23-15-3 20-8-2
x-NY Rangers 45 31 6 96 218 193 20-17-4 25-14-2 16-11-3
x-Philadelphia 42 30 10 94 236 235 24-14-3 18-16-7 15-11-4
x-Columbus 43 32 7 93 231 216 22-15-4 21-17-3 16-13-1
Washington 38 30 14 90 235 240 21-13-7 17-17-7 12-15-3
New Jersey 35 29 18 88 197 208 21-11-9 14-18-9 16-9-5
Carolina 36 35 11 83 207 230 18-17-6 18-18-5 15-13-2
NY Islanders 34 37 11 79 225 267 13-19-9 21-18-2 10-16-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
2013 - 2014 NHL Western Conference Standings
 
Central Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Colorado 52 22 8 112 250 220 26-11-4 26-11-4 19-6-3
x-St. Louis 52 23 7 111 248 191 28-9-4 24-14-3 21-6-2
x-Chicago 46 21 15 107 267 220 27-7-7 19-14-8 13-13-3
x-Minnesota 43 27 12 98 207 206 26-10-5 17-17-7 14-12-3
x-Dallas 40 31 11 91 235 228 23-11-7 17-20-4 13-11-5
Nashville 38 32 12 88 216 242 19-17-5 19-15-7 12-13-4
Winnipeg 37 35 10 84 227 237 18-17-6 19-18-4 9-15-5
 
Pacific Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
z-Anaheim 54 20 8 116 266 209 29-8-4 25-12-4 22-4-3
x-San Jose 51 22 9 111 249 200 29-7-5 22-15-4 18-7-3
x-Los Angeles 46 28 8 100 206 174 23-14-4 23-14-4 16-10-3
Phoenix 37 30 15 89 216 231 22-14-5 15-16-10 14-9-6
Vancouver 36 35 11 83 196 223 20-15-6 16-20-5 12-13-4
Calgary 35 40 7 77 209 241 19-19-3 16-21-4 11-15-3
Edmonton 29 44 9 67 203 270 16-22-3 13-22-6 8-17-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
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  • NASCAR: Toyota Owner's 400 from Richmond

    Saturday at 7:00 pm on FOX50

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

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  • MiLB: Bulls at Norfolk

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 620am

  • MiLB: Bulls at Charlotte

    Tuesday at 7:00 pm on 620am

  • MiLB: Bulls at Charlotte

    Wednesday at 11:05 am on 620am

  • MLB: LA Angels at NY Yankees

    Saturday at 1:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
NOR 6
DUR 3
 
Final
MIA 99
CHA 88
Final
CLE 6
TOR 4
Final
DET 2
ANA 1
Final
NYM 4
ATL 3
Final
MIA 3
SEA 2
Final
PIT 2
MIL 3
Final
WAS 3
STL 2
Final
TAM 1
NYY 5
Final
KAN 3
MIN 8
Final
CHC 2
CIN 8
Final
TEX 2
CWS 16
Final
OAK 4
HOU 1
Final
LOS 4
ARI 1
Final
COL 9
PHI 10
Final
SDP 3
SFG 4
9th
BOS 5
BAL 5
 
Final
SAN 90
DAL 85
Final
MIA 99
CHA 88
Final
CHI 93
WAS 102
2nd
HOU 40
POR 33
 
Final
NYR 2
PHI 4
Final
BOS 4
DET 1
Final
MON 3
TAM 2
1st
SJS 0
LOS 2
 
Final
NOR 6
DUR 3