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3 bold predictions: Alex Ovechkin looks for a big night against rival Penguins

3 bold predictions: Alex Ovechkin looks for a big night against rival Penguins

The rivalry is renewed Wednesday as the Pittsburgh Penguins come to Washington (8 p.m., NBCSN). Here are three bold predictions for the game.

1. Pittsburgh will lead Washington by at least five shots on goal and 10 shot attempts after the first period

Remember what happened last time these two teams met? The 7-1 shellacking the Caps laid on the Penguins? You can bet Pittsburgh does. Washington should expect to see the Penguins’ best shot in the first period.

RELATED: Caps re-assign O'Brien, Carey to AHL and what that means for Oshie

2. Sidney Crosby will score a goal

Crosby leads the NHL in goals with 26, four more than second-place Jeff Carter despite playing in eight fewer games. He missed the season opener against Washington and did not score in the November blowout. Crosby has only been held scoreless in three consecutive games once this season. He has not scored in the past two games. Essentially, he’s due.

3. Alex Ovechkin will get point No. 1,000

Frustration began to overtake Ovechkin last season when he attempted to pass Sergei Fedorov’s mark for the most goals by a Russian-born player in NHL history. That was a record that really seemed to matter to him and it affected his play, as it took him five games to finally break the record after tying it. While he recognized that scoring 500 goals was a big deal, the gravity of the accomplishment did not seem to weigh on his mind the same as heavily as it did when he approached Fedorov’s mark. As a result, Ovechkin scored goal No. 500 the very next game after scoring goal No. 499. Ovechkin feels much the same way about his 1,000th point as he did about goal No. 500. He knows it’s a big deal, but it’s not weighing on him. He’ll be more focused on beating the Penguins than on if he can get to 1,000. That will make it come all the easier.

MORE CAPITALS: Who from the Caps did the NHL look over for an All-Star bid?

Prediction Results for 2017: The streak is over thanks to a clean sweep. Finally, the new year is off on the right foot.
Correct: 3
Wrong: 12
Push: 0

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Jonas Siegenthaler moving to North America for the upcoming season

Jonas Siegenthaler moving to North America for the upcoming season

One of the biggest questions about Capitals prospect Jonas Siegenthaler is how he will adjust to the North American game. The good news is he should have plenty of time to work on it in the 2017-18 season.

Siegenthaler told CSN Mid-Atlantic on Wednesday that he will make the full-time switch from Europe to North America for the upcoming season.

Siegenthaler, 20, spent the majority of the past two seasons playing in his native Switzerland. Adjusting to the North American game is something all European players have to deal with, but questions about Siegenthaler’s ability to do so have sprung up after his brief stings with the Hershey Bears.

RELATED: Williams, Caps aren't having 'in-depth discussions'

“Here it's a lot quicker,” Siegenthaler said, comparing the North American game to what he is used to in Europe. “You can't always look for a good, nice pass. Sometimes you just have to rim it or chip it out. That's the biggest difference. You don't do that in Europe. That's what I have to learn.”

Siegenthaler was a standout during the 2016 World Junior Championship tournament playing for Switzerland. He is one of the Capitals’ most highly touted prospects, but he has not been able to show that potential in his time in Hershey. It also did not help that he was dealing with a family issue during Capitals’ training camp in 2016.

There is no better way to adjust to the North American game than to play it full-time. That makes the move to Hershey for next season the best thing for Siegenthaler's development. It also puts added pressure on him in development camp where he can work with the Caps’ and Bears’ coaching staff.

“It's pretty important,” Siegenthaler said. “It's a new chance to show what I can do, how I play."

MORE CAPITALS: What does the Copley deal mean for Grubauer?

Check out the latest episode of the Capitals Faceoff Podcast!

Like what you hear? Be sure to subscribe on Apple podcastsAudioboom and Google Play and give us a good review! Maybe we'll even read it on the air. For the latest Caps coverage be sure to follow @CSNCapitals@TarikCSN and @JJReganCSN on Twitter.

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Capitals Faceoff Podcast: Did the Caps make the right move with T.J. Oshie?

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Capitals Faceoff Podcast: Did the Caps make the right move with T.J. Oshie?

JJ Regan and Tarik El-Bashir disagree about whether the new deal with T.J. Oshie was the right move for the Caps. Plus, they talk about the team's other free agents, how they will address their need for a top-four defenseman, talk about who they like from development camp and open up the mailbag for your questions.

Like what you hear? Be sure to subscribe on Apple podcastsAudioboom and Google Play and give us a good review! Maybe we'll even read it on the air. For the latest Caps coverage be sure to follow @CSNCapitals@TarikCSN and @JJReganCSN on Twitter.

RELATED: Williams, Caps aren't having 'in-depth discussions'