Welcome to Caps 'Round the Clock, a blog covering the Washington Capitals and the NHL. In season, I update the Blog after every practice and on game day with Caps news and information, and then provide a recap and analysis after each contest. I also write a periodical Prospect Watch and weekly feature pieces on the state of the Men in Red and other things Capitals. And of course, I will post videos and tidbits from around the League and offer my two cents as the season wears on. In the offseason, I write a Report Card for each player, and will keep you updated on all the news about the Caps through the summer. I'm glad you're here, and hope you come back!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Gameday: vs. Calgary, Jan. 3

Captain Alex Ovechkin has 4 goals in his last 2 games.
The Washington Capitals will welcome the Calgary Flames to Verizon Center this evening as they attempt to continue their winning ways over the last week. The Caps enter this evening's action 6-3-1 over their last ten games and 20-15-2 overall for a total of 42 standings points.  Those 42 points place them third in the Southeast Division, five behind division leader Florida with two games in hand, and ninth in the Eastern Conference, one point back of the final playoff spot with two games in hand.  The Flames, on the other hand, are 4-3-3 in their last ten and 18-17-5 overall for a total of 41 standings points.  As a result, they are third in the Northwest Division and twelfth overall in the Western Conference.  This is the one and only meeting between these two clubs this season.

Calgary coach Brent Sutter is expected to rely on top goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff this evening despite the fact that he was lit up for four goals in his last outing against the Predators.  On the year, Kipper has a 17-13-2 record, 2.45 GAA, .916 save percentage, and two shutouts.  He allowed seven goals the last time these two teams met, in Calgary last season on Halloween night.  The Flames will also be without some of their top players tonight because of injury.  Defensemen Mark Giordano (hamstring) and Derek Smith (high ankle sprain) are out, as is winger Alex Tanguay (upper body).

Dale Hunter will call on Tomas Vokoun in goal for the fourth consecutive game tonight.  Vokoun is 15-8-0 on the year with a 2.57 GAA, .914 save percentage, and one shutout, and has played very well against the Flames in his career as well.  On the injury front, defenseman Mike Green is scheduled to return to the lineup this evening after a 23 game absence because of a groin injury.  In order to help ease Green back into the lineup, the Caps will go with seven defensemen, meaning that Alexander Semin, who is nursing an injury on his right arm, will not play.  Mathieu Perreault and Jeff Schultz will be the healthy scratches.

Puck drops 7:11-ish because of two national anthems.  Check back later.

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