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Alex Ovechkin to auction custom skates for charity

Capitals star to donate funds to American Special Hockey Association

by Tom Gulitti @tomgulittinhl / NHL.com Staff Writer

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin will wear Russian-American themed Bauer Vapor 1X skates for pregame warmups as part of Russian Heritage Night when the Capitals host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; CSN-DC, FS-O, NHL.TV).

Ovechkin will autograph the skates and they will be auctioned off, with all proceeds going to the American Special Hockey Association (ASHA), which was founded in 2005 to give those with physical and developmental disabilities the opportunity to play ice hockey. ASHA uses hockey to try to instill confidence and teach responsibility and socialization to its players.

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Brian Elliott at forefront of Flames resurgence

Goalie's second half has Calgary on verge of playoff berth

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

WASHINGTON -- Brian Elliott's 11-game winning streak came to an end with a barrage of shots from the Washington Capitals on Tuesday.

The Calgary Flames goaltender did his best, making 36 saves, including 10 on Alex Ovechkin alone. But Ovechkin's 11th shot went in and Elliott and the Calgary Flames came out on the short end of a 4-2 loss to the Capitals at Verizon Center.

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NHL Insider

Blue Jackets use strong start to surge into playoffs

16-game winning streak, John Tortorella help Columbus clinch third-ever postseason berth

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

Few outside the Columbus Blue Jackets locker room expected them to qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs this season after they finished 27th in the NHL standings in 2015-16.

But they became the second team to clinch a playoff berth this season by defeating the New Jersey Devils 4-1 on Sunday. It will be the Blue Jackets' third playoff appearance in their 17-season history, first since 2014.

The Blue Jackets (47-18-6, 100 points) are tied with the Washington Capitals for first place in the Metropolitan Division, Eastern Conference and League standings. They already have established team records for wins and points, and are looking to add to them during their final 11 regular-season games while pursuing the Presidents' Trophy and home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs.

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NHL Insider

Capitals ride balanced scoring to playoff berth

Depth on offense, Braden Holtby help Washington return to postseason

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

After their past disappointments, the Washington Capitals know they will be judged this season solely on how far they go in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Becoming the first team this season to clinch a playoff berth by defeating the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-3 on Saturday was the first step. 

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Andre Burakovsky set for Capitals return

Washington forward to face Lightning on Saturday after missing 15 games with hand injury

by Tom Gulitti @tomgulittinhl / NHL.com Staff Writer

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Right wing Andre Burakovsky will have the Washington Capitals at full strength when he returns against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Amalie Arena on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; SUN, CSN-DC, NHL.TV).

Burakovsky has been sidelined since injuring his right hand blocking a shot by Brendan Smith during a 6-3 win against the Detroit Red Wings on Feb. 9 and has missed 15 games.

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Filip Forsberg puts focus on Predators, playoffs

But Nashville forward says it's still 'special' to play against Capitals, the team that drafted him

by Tom Gulitti @tomgulittinhl / NHL.com Staff Writer

WASHINGTON -- Almost four years after the Washington Capitals traded him to the Nashville Predators, Filip Forsberg has mostly moved on.

There was a time when Forsberg, the Capitals' first-round pick (No. 11) in the 2012 NHL Draft, envisioned teaming with Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom to bring the Stanley Cup to Washington. Now he's focused on helping the Predators clinch a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Though Forsberg had a relatively quiet game, he was happy to leave Verizon Center with a 2-1 overtime win against the Capitals on Thursday. It gave the Predators (35-24-11) two valuable points, helping them solidify their hold on third place in the Central Division.

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NHL Centennial

Martin Brodeur's memory of record victory still vivid

Passed Patrick Roy for most NHL regular-season wins by goaltender on March 17, 2009

by Tom Gulitti @tomgulittinhl / NHL.com Staff Writer

The memories remain so vivid and feel so recent that former goaltender Martin Brodeur can't believe that it's been eight years since he passed Patrick Roy and became the NHL all-time leader in wins.

Brodeur made 30 saves for the New Jersey Devils in a 3-2 victory against Chicago Blackhawks at Prudential Center on March 17, 2009. It was his 552nd win, one more than Roy.

"It's almost mind-boggling how time flies," Brodeur said. "There's such great things that happened that you remember clearly, but you turn around and all that time already has passed."

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Stanley Cup 125th Anniversary

Cup celebration worth the wait for Justin Williams

Forward remembers spending final seconds of 2006 clinching game in penalty box

by Tom Gulitti @tomgulittinhl / NHL.com Staff Writer

Editor's note: The Stanley Cup turns 125 years old on March 18. To celebrate the historic anniversary, NHL.com talked to the players and coaches who dedicated their lives to winning the Stanley Cup, some succeeding, some failing, but all with incredible stories about their quest for hockey's ultimate prize. 

The first time Washington Capitals right wing Justin Williams won the Stanley Cup, he had to spend the final seconds in isolation.

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Clint Malarchuk has new lease on life

Former Sabres goalie grateful for chance to help others with depression after struggling himself

by Tom Gulitti @tomgulittinhl / NHL.com Staff Writer

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Clint Malarchuk is crying. And he's not the only one.

From Malarchuk's perspective, this is a good thing. It means his message about living with depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has hit home with his audience.

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Alex Ovechkin, Capitals end skid

Washington captain scores first goal in 11 games to help stop four-game losing streak

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

WASHINGTON -- The Washington Capitals didn't fix all that was ailing them, but their universe felt more in order after a 4-2 win against the Minnesota Wild at Verizon Center on Tuesday.

Having Alex Ovechkin score a goal has a way of doing that.

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