The Washington Capitals will be back on the ice Tuesday night as they face off against the Florida Panthers. Coach’s Assistant Kevin McCarthy served behind the bench as head coach for the team’s last two games against the Tampa Bay Lightning due to by Pierre Laviolette COVID protocol stay.
This will change Tuesday in Sunrise. Laviolette is off protocol and will return to his role as the team’s bench boss against Florida.
The news was announced via Capitals PR.
#Caps Head Coach Peter Laviolette is out of the NHL’s COVID protocol and will assume head coaching duties behind the bench tonight against Florida.
— CapitalsPR (@CapitalsPR) November 15, 2022
The Capitals went 1-1 with McCarthy and assistant coach Blaine Forsythe primarily in charge of those two games against Tampa Bay. So far in November, the Caps are just 2-4-1 and have yet to win two in a row.
Mike Vogel reports that the Capitals are on course to hit their first mark below .500 in any November since the 2014-15 season and the first time they finished below “NHL .500” (shootout/overtime losses) since 2011-12 when they went 5-8-1 in November. This particular month of November led to Dale Hunter succeeding Bruce Boudreau as head coach.
The Caps were 9-4-2 in November last season, and they set a franchise-best 10-2-2 mark in November in the 2019-20 campaign.
Vogel also reports that the Caps don’t expect any return from injury and will have the same roster as Sunday against the Lightning. We know Sonny Milano received a promotion to the front line in practice on Monday, so here’s what the full lineup could look like.
Darcy Kuemper will return to the starter’s net after a very poor performance that saw him fired against the Lightning in the first period after allowing four goals on just nine shots. On the other hand, Sergei Bobrovsky will be a force for the Panthers. Bob is 3-4-1 in eight starts this season with a 3.29 goals-against average and .897 save percentage.
The Panthers go into action on Tuesday night also a little inconsistent in November. They are 3-3 in six games and were beaten by the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 in their last game on Saturday.
Main photo: Alan Dobbins/MRNB