[7:09 PM] Capitals @ Islanders

Who will WIN this matchup?

Washington Capitals (17-7-3)

@ New York Islanders (11-11-5)


Starting Goalies:

Braden Holtby (WSH): Confirmed

Jaroslav Halak (NYI): Confirmed


The Washington Capitals have won four in a row to keep pace with the other surging teams in the Metropolitan, but the performance of Barry Trotz’s club versus the representatives in the division has left plenty to be desired. Sporting just a 2-4-2 mark against their Metro rivals, the Capitals look to get it in gear on Tuesday when they visit the cellar-dwelling New York Islanders. Captain Alex Ovechkin ended a seven-game goal-scoring drought on Sunday by recording his 200th career power-play tally and adding an assist in a 3-0 victory versus Vancouver.

Former Capital Jaroslav Halak made 38 saves to notch his first shutout of the season and 40th career in the recent meeting between the teams, but was scorched for four third-period goals on Saturday as New York saw its 5-0-1 run end with a thud in a 6-2 loss at Columbus. The Islanders hope a return home is what’s needed to bounce back as the club is 4-0-2 in its last six at Barclays Center, although New York has failed to defeat Washington at home in regulation since March 9, 2013.

T.J. Oshie and Marcus Johansson have recorded three goals and three assists during the last five games while fellow forward Nicklas Backstrom has 16 points (seven goals, nine assists) in his last 13 contests. Like Ovechkin, the 29-year-old Backstrom also has been kept off the scoresheet in both outings this season versus the Islanders, but has 33 points (nine goals, 24 assists) in as many career encounters. Reigning Vezina Trophy winner Braden Holtby has answered a three-game slide with three straight victories overall heading into a tilt with New York, versus which he is a blistering 11-2-3 with a 2.19 goals-against average.

Captain John Tavares scored on Saturday to extend both his goal-scoring run to three contests and his point streak to five games (three goals, two assists). Eight of Tavares’ team-leading nine goals have been scored at home and 17 of his club-best 22 points to boot, although he joined fellow forward Josh Bailey in notching an assist at the Verizon Center in the last meeting with the Capitals. Bailey, who also scored versus the Blue Jackets on Saturday, has three goals and six assists in his last 10 games to tie for second on the team with 17 points.

Washington has scored 10 power-play goals in the past 12 games, but is 0-for-11 with the man advantage against New York this season.


StreakSmarts Pick: Washington Capitals

Confidence: 5/10

StreakSmarter Pick