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Among the adjustments Shattenkirk still needs to make: Remember secret handshake with Oshie

Among the adjustments Shattenkirk still needs to make: Remember secret handshake with Oshie

Sunday's game was Kevin Shattenkirk's third with his new teammates, but it was the first with his old one. T.J. Oshie returned to the lineup after a four-game absence allowing the two to reunite on the ice for the first time since Oshie was traded from St. Louis.

"It was great," Oshie said. "We were chatting all day."

Oshie and Shattenkirk were teammates on the Blues from the end of the 2011 season through the 2014-15 season. While Shattenkirk works to adjust to his new team, having a former teammate to work with should have brought instant chemistry.

Both players quickly realized, however, that there was one very important aspect to their game they needed to work on.

RELATED: Caps survive slugfest to extend home win streak

"With my former team I had kind of a secret handshake with almost everyone on the team," Oshie said. "It took us until before the third period until we could remember what ours was."

You can adjust to the power play or a new defensive partner on the fly, but when you don't have your secret handshake down it throws the whole team out of sync.

Luckily, Oshie and Shattenkirk were able to work through it.

"It took us awhile to figure it out," Shattenkirk said. "We were in the locker room each period trying to figure out what we used to do years ago, but we finally got it down pat."

Washington was held scoreless through the first two periods of the game. Once Oshie and Shattenkirk finally got the handshake down, however, the Caps scored twice.

Coincidence?

"We got it right finally," Oshie said. "That's good. It's all coming back. It's great to battle with him again."

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Alex Ovechkin makes kids' day with street hockey surprise

Alex Ovechkin makes kids' day with street hockey surprise

Kids part of the American Special Hockey Association had no idea they were going to meet one of the NHL's biggest stars during a game of street hockey on Friday afternoon.

But that's what happened when Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin surprised a handful of youngsters playing in a tournament in front of Capital One Arena.

Ovechkin wasn't just there for pictures and autographs, he also joined in on the action for the next hour and did not hold back in one of his last major games before before the regular season.

MORE: ANOTHER TOP-SIX AUDITION FOR VRANA

ASHA and Ovechkin have been hosting events together for four consecutive seasons. The organization was created in 2000 and enables players of all ages who have developmental disabilities to enjoy the sport of hockey.

You can watch the full video of Ovechkin's surprise above.

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Jakub Vrana gets another top-six audition in the Caps' home preseason opener

Jakub Vrana gets another top-six audition in the Caps' home preseason opener

Here’s how Coach Barry Trotz will have his players line up Friday night vs. the Blues...and a few notes about forward combos and D pairings you'll see at Capital One Arena:

Forwards
Vrana – Backstrom – Oshie
Burakovsky – Boyd – Smith-Pelly
Stephenson – Eller – Wilson
Bau – Graovac – Peluso

Defense
Johansen – Carlson
Djoos – Chorney
Ness – Lewington

Goalies
Holtby
Copley

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  • After scoring a power play goal while skating on a line with Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov on Wednesday, Jakub Vrana is getting an audition on the other top-six line.
  • Stephenson is the only player to appear in all three preseason games. Tonight, he’s skating on the wing after playing center in the first two contests. He’s a prospect the Caps are hoping makes the opening night roster but the reason he’s played so much is because fourth-line center Jay Beagle is “trying to manage his body a little bit,” according to Trotz.
  • Beagle has not played yet this preseason, but Trotz said he’s been practicing and scrimmaging full-go. “He’s not hurt,” Trotz said. “He’s got some tightness. We’re going to work through the tightness and he’ll be fine. There’s no reason to rush guys.”
  • Winger Mathias Bau wasn’t originally slated to see any game action, but the Denmark native impressed Trotz so much in a scrimmage earlier this week that the coach found a spot in the lineup for him. Bau, the tallest player in camp at 6-7, is skating on a line with Graovac (6-5) and Peluso (6-3).  “He’s gotten better and better,” Trotz said of Bau, who signed an AHL deal with Hershey this summer. “So he deserves to get in a game. He’s been standing out. Originally I had another guy in there but Bau has sorta overtaken him.”
  • Peluso is another player who is emerging as a candidate to earn a spot on the fourth line. This will mark his second straight preseason appearance. 
  • Matt Niskanen and Dmitry Orlov will make their preseason debut Saturday vs. the Hurricanes, according to Trotz, who has already said they’ll open the regular season as the top pair.

 

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