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Preview: Panthers at Capitals

Washington tries for fifth consecutive win, Roberto Luongo back in goal for Florida

by Katie Brown / NHL.com Correspondent

PANTHERS (5-5-1) at CAPITALS (7-2-1)

7 p.m. ET; FS-F, CSN-DC, NHL.TV

 

Panthers team scope

Roberto Luongo is expected to start in goal for the Florida Panthers on Saturday. The Panthers lost 5-2 to the Capitals for their first home loss of the season on Oct. 20. Florida was 2-0-1 in three games against the Capitals last season. "They're a great team so it'll be a battle," coach Gerard Gallant told the Miami Herald on Friday. "We played them good in that building last year, so hopefully we'll do the same." This is the only road game for the Panthers in a span of 15 days.

 

Capitals team scope

The Washington Capitals have won four consecutive games and play the second game of a three-game homestand. Goalie Braden Holtby will start for the ninth time this season. Washington completed a home-and-home sweep of the Winnipeg Jets despite giving up 2-0 and 3-0 leads, but coach Barry Trotz said he isn't worried about it yet. Forward Daniel Winnik will play after being scratched for four games. "Where he can have the biggest impact is on our penalty kill," Trotz said. "He's a big-bodied guy, so he can use his frame to win battles along the wall, use his frame to get to the front of the net, use his frame to box out people in those situations and just play a real good solid two-way game, which he can."

 

Panthers projected lineup

Jonathan Marchessault -- Aleksander Barkov -- Jaromir Jagr

Reilly Smith -- Vincent Trocheck -- Colton Sceviour

Jared McCann -- Denis Malgin -- Kyle Rau

Greg McKegg -- Derek MacKenzie -- Shane Harper

Keith Yandle -- Aaron Ekblad

Michael Matheson -- Jason Demers

Mark Pysyk -- Alex Petrovic

Roberto Luongo

James Reimer

Scratched: Shawn Thornton, Steven Kampfer

Injured: Jonathan Huberdeau (Achilles), Nick Bjugstad (hand), Jussi Jokinen (lower body)

 

Capitals projected lineup

Alex Ovechkin -- Nicklas Backstrom -- Justin Williams

Marcus Johansson -- Evgeny Kuznetsov -- Tom Wilson

Andre Burakovsky -- Lars Eller -- T.J. Oshie

Zachary Sanford -- Jay Beagle -- Daniel Winnik

Karl Alzner -- Matt Niskanen

Dmitry Orlov -- John Carlson

Brooks Orpik -- Nate Schmidt

Braden Holtby

Philipp Grubauer

Scratched: Brett Connolly, Taylor Chorney

Injured: None

 

Status report

Luongo will be trying to snap a personal three-game losing streak after James Reimer made 31 saves in a 4-3 overtime victory against the New Jersey Devils on Thursday. … Winnik is taking Connolly's place on the fourth line.

 

Who's hot

Marchessault has 12 points in his past 11 games. Malgin has three points in three games. … Ovechkin had two goals and an assist, including the overtime winner, on Thursday. Carlson has three points in two games.

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