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Coyotes, Capitals look to get back into win column

by Adam Vingan

COYOTES (3-6-1) at CAPITALS (4-4-2)


ARLINGTON, Va. -- With the Washington Capitals and Arizona Coyotes each playing on the road Saturday, neither team held a morning skate prior to their game Sunday at Verizon Center.

The game features two teams in need of a victory to halt recent skids.

The Coyotes have lost the first three games of their four-game Eastern Conference road trip, the most recent a 3-0 loss to the previously winless Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday. In losing six of seven (1-5-1), Arizona has the fewest points in the Western Conference with seven.

"There's lots of glaring holes in our game," captain Shane Doan told The Arizona Republic following the loss to the Hurricanes. "Pretty embarrassing."

Washington has lost three straight and four of five (1-4-0) after a 4-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Capitals have not necessarily played poorly during their slide. Washington has held a second-period lead in each of the four losses and its Corsi-for percentage in close situations at 5-on-5 is 55.04 in the past five games, according to

"It’s very difficult to try to stay on course when frustration's setting in a little bit," forward Troy Brouwer told The Washington Post. "We're doing a lot of the right things. When you’re not winning, it’s tough to focus on the positives, but that's what we need to do."

Goalie Justin Peters will start for the Capitals. Goalie Devan Dubnyk will likely make his third start of the season for the Coyotes; No. 1 goaltender Mike Smith has a 3.92 goals-against average and .883 save percentage in the first three games of Arizona's road trip and played Saturday.

Here are the projected lineups:


Mikkel BoedkerAntoine VermetteShane Doan

Sam GagnerMartin HanzalMartin Erat

Tobias RiederJustin HodgmanLauri Korpikoski

Brandon McMillanKyle ChipchuraJoe Vitale

Oliver Ekman-LarssonZbynek Michalek

Keith YandleMichael Stone

David SchlemkoConnor Murphy

Devan Dubnyk

Mike Smith

Scratched: B.J. Crombeen, Chris Summers, Rob Klinkhammer

Injured: David Moss (upper body)


Alex OvechkinAndre BurakovskyJoel Ward

Marcus JohanssonNicklas Backstrom- Troy Brouwer

Jason ChimeraEvgeny Kuznetsov - Eric Fehr

Jay BeagleMichael LattaTom Wilson

Brooks OrpikJohn Carlson

Karl AlznerMatt Niskanen

Nate SchmidtMike Green

Justin Peters

Braden Holtby

Scratched: Liam O’Brien, Jack Hillen

Injured: Brooks Laich (upper body), Aaron Volpatti (upper body), Dmitry Orlov (wrist), John Erskine (neck surgery)

Status report: Rieder will make his NHL debut. The Arizona Republic projects that he will skate on the left side of the second line. The 21-year-old leads the Portland Pirates of the American Hockey League with four goals. ... If Capitals coach Barry Trotz alters his lineup, it will likely be on the fourth line. O'Brien was scratched for the first time this season Saturday and could return.

Who’s hot: Ekman-Larsson has assisted on two of the Coyotes' four goals in their past three games. … Johansson has scored three 5-on-5 goals in 10 games after scoring two in 80 last season.

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