The Capitals opened their new campaign with a 5-4 shootout victory against the Ottawa Senators last night, marked notably by an Alex Ovechkin hat trick. Although Ovechkin may have stolen the headlines, his linemate Jakub Vrana and the rest of the top six forward core were also brilliant.
Despite the one goal margin and the game heading to extra time, the Capitals were in control possession wise. They out-attempted the Sens 49 to 39 at five-on-five.
This Caps team is more top heavy than teams of recent past, and they will likely lean on those players heavily this season, just as they did Thursday night in Ottawa. The entire top six owned their defensive matchups, but notably Vrana ended the night plus-11 in five-on-five shot attempts, leading the team. The rookie forward also led all Caps forwards in five-on-five time-on-ice (16:52), was second in individual shot attempts (6) and tallied two assists. All of that and he’s probably still trying to find a place to live!
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