The Caps have lost both of their games since returning from the bye. They will look to get snap that skid Wednesday in Philadelphia against the Flyers (8 p.m., NBCSN). Here are three bold predictions for the game.
1. Washington will lead after the first period
The Caps had bad starts in both of their games over the weekend, especially on Sunday against the Rangers in which they gave up 19 shots on goal in the first 20 minutes. Washington knows that to get back to their winning ways, they need a strong start Wednesday.
2. Players will be given matching minors
It’s always contentious when the Caps play the Flyers, especially when the game is in Philadelphia. I would call for a fight, but no one fights anymore. At some point, things will get heated to the point that a player from each side will be sent to cool off in the penalty box.
3. Washington’s third line will score
This is not so much as a prediction as it is a challenge. In the two games the Caps have played against the Flyers this season, Andre Burakovsky has scored in both games. Burakovsky, however, is out with injury and Zach Sanford is in his place. The third line has been able to find success against Philadelphia this season and that will continue tonight with Sanford playing alongside Brett Connolly and Lars Eller.
MORE CAPITALS: Sanford is making the most of his opportunity
The Wizards made a trade deadline move on Wednesday, as reported by CSN's J. Michael, by sending Marcus Thornton, Andrew Nicholson and a lottery-protected first-round pick to the Brooklyn Nets for guard Bojan Bogdanovic and one other player -- forward Chris McCullough.
While Bogdanovic will likely be an immediate contributor to the bench rotation, McCullough may be a longer-term play. Here are five things to know about the New York City native.
1) McCullough played one season at Syracuse and left for the NBA after tearing his ACL
McCullough played in 16 games as a freshman at Syracuse in 2014-15 before a torn ACL ended his season. At the time, he was averaging 9.3 points and 6.9 rebounds per game after coming to the Orange as the No. 19 overall player in the high school class of 2014.
2) McCullough is a 22-year-old, 6-9 power forward who has stretch potential down the line
The Nets rolled the dice on McCullough's potential by taking a player coming off a torn ACL with the 29th overall pick in the 2015 draft. He came into the league wiry thin, but has added muscle in his two years in the D-League and NBA.
3) He played in 24 games with the Nets in 2015-16
McCullough started four of those 24 games as a rookie last season for Brooklyn. He averaged 4.7 points and 2.8 rebounds in 15.1 minutes per game. Interestingly enough, he played well against Washington. In two games, he averaged 11 points, four rebounds and three steals per contest.
4) He has played 31 games in the D-League this year and is tearing it up
During the 2016-17 season with the Long Island Nets, he has averaged 18.1 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. Perhaps more importantly, he shot nearly 35 percent from three-point range which could be an indication down the line that he could be a versatile, multi-dimensional stretch forward.
With John Wall as the engine of the offense, the more players who can capitalize on his ability to collapse the defense off the dribble, the better.
5) The contract situation
With his high ceiling, McCullough is on a cheap rookie deal that is even cheaper in context considering the fact that incoming rookies will get a raise with the new CBA. His contract was guaranteed for his first and second year, with team options in the third and fourth year.
Watch his highlights below: