<![CDATA[NBC4 Washington - Capital Games]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcwashington.com/blogs/capital-games http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/WASH+NBC4+BLUE.png NBC4 Washington http://www.nbcwashington.comen-usWed, 27 Jul 2016 07:54:02 -0400Wed, 27 Jul 2016 07:54:02 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Redskins' Kerrigan Dishes Ice Cream, Reacts to Loss of Galette]]> Tue, 26 Jul 2016 21:09:22 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Ryan+Kerrigan+Good+Humor+Man.jpg Washington Redskins linebacker Ryan Kerrigan hands out free ice cream in downtown Washington and reflects on the loss of Junior Galette to an Achilles injury.

Photo Credit: NBCWashington]]>
<![CDATA[Redskins Training Camp Preview: 4 Things to Watch]]> Tue, 26 Jul 2016 20:54:40 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-482487314football73115.jpg Carol Maloney talks to ESPN 980's Steve Czaban and Andy Pollin about what to expect during Redskins training camp in Richmond, Virginia.

Photo Credit: The Washington Post/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Redskins Superfan to Be Laid to Rest Wednesday]]> Wed, 27 Jul 2016 06:29:08 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/072016+chief+zee+2.jpg

Washington Redskins superfan Zema Williams, better known as Chief Zee, will be honored at a funeral Wednesday. 

Williams' funeral will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at First Baptist Church of Glenarden's Worship Center at 600 Watkins Park Drive in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, the church confirmed. The viewing will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. 

GoFundMe page has been set up to cover funeral expenses.

Williams wore a faux Native American costume to Redskins games starting in 1978. He died last week, the team confirmed on July 19. 

Fans held a vigil to reminisce about the local celebrity.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[U.Md. Women's Basketball to Tour Italy]]> Fri, 22 Jul 2016 18:37:55 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/University+of+Maryland+Womens+Basketball+Practice+072216.jpg The University of Maryland's women's basketball team is getting a jump on next season with a tour of Italy. Carol Maloney reports.

Photo Credit: NBCWashington]]>
<![CDATA[PHOTOS: Redskins Fans Mourn Death of DC Icon Chief Zee]]> Thu, 21 Jul 2016 00:07:04 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/072016+chief+zee+2.jpg

Washington Redskins fans are mourning the death of the team's most famous supporter in the past four decades.

Chief Zee, born Zema Williams, has died, the team confirmed Tuesday. Mourners gathered for a vigil Tuesday night at the team's headquarters in Ashburn, Virginia.

They lit a candle, held a moment of silence and reminisced about the man who wore a faux Native American headdress in the Redskins' colors, carried a toy tomahawk and rarely missed a game.

"We've lost a true institution here in Washington," fan Tommy Moorcones said at the vigil.

Williams enjoyed celebrity status where ever he went and loved children, often handing them balloons, fans said.

"I've never seen faces, from infants on up, light up as much as when Chief walked into a room," fan Christie Lopez said.

Williams, a retired car salesman, died in his sleep at home in Prince George's County, sources told News4. He was 75, The Washington Post reported.

He began attending games dressed in a faux Native American outfit in 1978, starting with a Monday Night Football matchup with the Dallas Cowboys. His dedication to the team was recognized in 2000 in an exhibit in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

As the team's name came under scrutiny in recent years, so did Williams' costume.

But die-hard fans remained loyal. When Williams was in danger of being evicted earlier this year, fans banded together to help him keep his home and raised more than $5,000 in five days.

No information on the cause of Williams' death was released.

Williams is gone but his love for the team will live on, fans said.

"This is devastating, but he'll be with us in spirit, that's for sure," Tamika Rector said.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[News4 Sits Down With Redskins' Chris Baker]]> Mon, 18 Jul 2016 13:14:06 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000015451637_1200x675_727131203811.jpg News4's Jason Pugh sits down with Redskins defensive end Chris Baker.]]> <![CDATA[Virginia Grandma Breaks Tennis Record to Benefit Military Families]]> Mon, 04 Jul 2016 12:39:31 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000015305226_1200x675_718228547762.jpg Reston, Virginia, resident Bonnie Vona broke the record for consecutive singles tennis matches. The 61-year-old grandmother played 38 games over the past three days, to benefit military families. News4's Carol Maloney reports. ]]> <![CDATA[Quicken Loans National: What to Know If You Go]]> Wed, 22 Jun 2016 14:57:27 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-482842440.jpg

Headed to the Quicken Loans National golf tournament in Bethesda this week? Here's what to know before you go.


Thursday, June 23
Gates open 7 a.m.
First round 7:20 a.m.-6 p.m.

Friday, June 24
Gates open 7 a.m.
Second round 7:20 a.m.–6 p.m.

Saturday, June 25
Gates open 7 a.m.
Third round 8 a.m.–6 p.m.

Sunday, June 26
Gates open 7 a.m.
Final round 8:30 a.m.–6:30 p.m.
Awards ceremony on 18th green 6:30 p.m.


Kids ages 12 and younger are admitted to the grounds free if with a paid adult (limit two kids per adult). Free youth grounds tickets are available for pickup at the ticket office.


Attendees may be subject to inspection before entering. The following items are forbidden:

  • Backpacks/large purses
  • Beverage containers and coolers
  • Large camera bags and cameras (except Tuesday and Wednesday)
  • Chairs in bags and folding-arm chairs (higher than 18 inches or wider than 20 inches)
  • Ladders
  • Packages
  • Pets/animals
  • Periscopes
  • Picnic baskets
  • Radios and televisions
  • Signs/banners
  • Video cameras/recorders
  • Weapons and firearms

Find a detailed list of what is and isn't permitted online here.


  • Devices must be on silent at all times.
  • You can make or answer calls only in designated cell phone zones.
  • You may not use devices to capture audio/video at any time during tournament week.
  • Monday through Wednesday, still photography of all areas is permitted.
  • Thursday through Sunday, you may not take photos of players as they make golf shots within any competition area.
  • Still photography of all other areas is permitted.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Nationals Star Wears 51st State T-Shirt as Public Forums Begin]]> Mon, 13 Jun 2016 17:24:52 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Harper_Nat%27s_tee.png

It looks like supporters of D.C. statehood have another famous supporter -- Washington Nationals player Bryce Harper. 

NBC4 photographed Harper on Monday in a gray T-shirt with the shape of the District in red and the words "51st State." 

Harper wore the shirt in the Nats' locker room before the game Monday night and the first of the District's three constitutional conventions.

The New Columbia Statehood Commission will host events Monday night, Friday night and Saturday morning to hear residents’ input on the draft constitution.

Mayor Muriel Bowser said the conventions will include public discussions of the draft. Anyone with comments can submit ideas until midnight Saturday, June 18.

To see the full schedule of conventions, including their locations, visit the New Columbia Statehood Commission’s website.

Photo Credit: NBC Washington]]>
<![CDATA[Redskins Team With Loudoun Co. Students to Promote Exercise]]> Fri, 10 Jun 2016 18:16:17 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000015028222_1200x675_703311427610.jpg Some Redskins players team up with elementary and middle school students at Park View High School to encourage exercise.]]> <![CDATA[Wizards' John Wall Selling Personal Clothes for Charity]]> Thu, 09 Jun 2016 17:17:48 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-5092714741.jpg

Aspiring basketball stars are getting one step closer to reaching their goal, through the wardrobe of the Washington Wizards' John Wall.

As reported by Washingtonian, clothes from the private collection of Wall, the Wizards' star point guard, are now for sale at The RealReal, a luxury consignment website.

Proceeds from all sales benefit the John Wall Family Foundation, an effort founded by Wall, which, its website says, seeks "to improve the quality of life for disadvantaged families and to impact the lives of at-risk youth through mentorship, education and physical activity."

The clothes range from blazers and belts to sweatpants and sneakers, mostly in size large. High-end brands available include Louboutin, Givenchy and Louis Vuitton.

Many of the items have already sold out; the remainder will be up for sale until June 14, as Washingtonian reported.

Wall told Esquire, "It's important for me to support the communities that have supported me both in D.C. and Raleigh. And being able to improve the quality of life for disadvantaged families and impact the lives of at-risk youth through mentorship, education, and physical activity is what the John Wall Family Foundation is all about."

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Redskins Announce Training Camp Schedule]]> Thu, 02 Jun 2016 15:03:15 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-453831984.jpg

The Washington Redskins announced the schedule for training camp in Richmond, Virginia.

Training camp begins July 28 and runs through Aug. 14. All sessions are free and open to the public. 

Fans can bring lawn chairs and blankets to sit on, as there are no bleachers available.

Richmond will provide parking options to be announced closer to the beginning of camp.

Alcohol, illegal drugs, weapons, firearms, glass bottles, video cameras and animals (except for certified guide dogs assisting disabled guests) are prohibited. Food and drinks will be available for purchase at the site. All fans and their bags are subject to search.

Thursday, July 28
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Friday, July 29
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Saturday, July 30
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Monday, Aug. 1
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Tuesday, Aug. 2
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Wednesday, Aug. 3
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Special Teams Practice

Thursday, Aug. 4
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Friday, Aug. 5
1 p.m. Practice

Sunday, Aug. 7
1 p.m. Practice

Monday, Aug. 8
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Tuesday, Aug. 9
1:35 p.m. Practice

Saturday, Aug. 13
Fan Appreciation Day
1:35 p.m. Practice

Sunday, Aug. 14
10:35 a.m. Walkthrough
3 p.m. Practice

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Kirk Cousins Talks Money With High School Students]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 20:37:56 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000014865249_1200x675_694549059626.jpg Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins visited Bowie High School in Prince George's County, teaming up with Congressman Steny Hoyer and Visa to teach students how to be smart with their money. Chris Miles reports.]]> <![CDATA['Dancing Grandma' Breaks It Down at Her 1st MLB Game]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 13:01:32 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/2016-05-27_0905.png Virginia McLaurin, the 107-year-old grandmother who charmed President Barack Obama with her dance moves earlier this year, showed off her dance moves on the mound at National Park Thursday night. It was McLaurin's first MLB game. She got a chance to meet with Nats manager Dusty Baker and even got her own jersey: No. 107, of course.

Photo Credit: NBC Washington]]>
<![CDATA[Bryce Harper's Jersey from Papelbon Fight for Sale]]> Sat, 21 May 2016 12:55:10 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/180*120/490330798.jpg

It was a fight that, at the time, was indicative of a season slipping away from the Washington Nationals.

Nats outfielder Bryce Harper and relief pitcher Jonathan Papelbon got into a scuffle on Sept. 27 after Harper flied out and returned to the dugout. The two players had exchanged words before Papelbon grabbed Harper by the throat and manhandled him towards the bench. Teammates scrambled to break them apart.

The fight came one day after the team had officially been eliminated from postseason play. Papelbon was suspended by the team for four days, and Harper was held out one day.

Now, Harper's #34 Jersey worn on the day described as "the snapshot that best defined the dysfunction and disappointment of the Washington Nationals' 2015 season" is up for sale by online auction site Lelands.

The highest bid has reached nearly $5,000, as of 8:30 a.m. Saturday.

According to the auction description, there is dirt on the back of the size 48 shirt and is signed by Harper, who also wrote "Luke 1:37" under his signature, on the number 4.

"Whether or not you classify Harper as a model Christian, the scripture in question reads: 'For with God nothing shall be impossible,'" the posting reads.

The jersey will remain on the auction block until June 17.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Redskins-Themed Restaurant Opens Friday in Loudoun Co.]]> Tue, 17 May 2016 16:54:43 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/240*120/20160212-hail-hog-2.jpg

A Redskins-themed restaurant will open Friday in Loudoun County.

Hail & Hog Kitchen and Tap is set to open at the One Loudoun complex in Ashburn, Virginia near the team's headquarters and facilities.

The massive restaurant will span two levels and 12,000 square feet.

The first floor is food- and drink-focused, and will also be home to a radio and TV broadcast studio. When not in use, the space can be reserved for private events. The second floor will feature wall-to-wall 4K TVs inside, and a fire pit and rooftop bar outside.

Reservations won't be accepted, the restaurant said on its Facebook page, but would-be patrons are welcome to call ahead.

The menu has not yet been released, but the restaurant said it will be posted on social media soon.

Hail & Hog is the newest NFL-themed restaurants operated by G.R.E.A.T. Grille Group (g3). Other g3 restaurants include the Houston Texans Grille and the Indianapolis Colts Grille.

It's worth noting that those other restaurants bear the actual name of their teams. That's not the case for the restaurant celebrating Washington's football franchise; Native American tribes and organizations, as well as the federal Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, have claimed the Redskins' name is derogatory. 

Instead, this restaurant's name nods to the team's fight song and the nickname given to the offensive line during the winning seasons of the 1980s and 1990s. 

"We are excited to partner with g3 to create a first-class venue where Redskins fans can come together with friends and family and celebrate the team's history," Redskins Executive Vice President Terry Bateman said in a release earlier this year.

Hail & Hog will be available to rent for private events. The Redskins say they will host a variety of events, including some press conferences, there too. 

Photo Credit: g3]]>
<![CDATA[Skins' Kerrigan Hosts 11th Annual Leukemia Classic]]> Mon, 16 May 2016 21:37:34 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000014731892_1200x675_686827587655.jpg Redskins linebacker Ryan Kerrigan, along with teammates and coaches, hit the links to raise more than $500,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Head coach Jay Gruden was frustrated after not measuring up in the Longest Drive competition. Dave Johnson has the story.]]> <![CDATA[Tiger Woods, Quicken Loans National Return to Congressional]]> Mon, 16 May 2016 21:22:44 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000014731926_1200x675_686835267530.jpg Fourteen-time major Champion Tiger Woods hasn't been seen much since having two back procedures in the past year. He was at Congressional Country Club meeting with the media prior to the Quicken Loans National. Woods talked about where he's been, his return and even took some swings. News4's Jason Pugh has the story.]]> <![CDATA[Crushing End for the Capitals]]> Thu, 12 May 2016 17:43:48 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/20150511+Caps+Lose.jpg The Washington Capitals head into the offseason crushed after a year that saw sky high expectations. Today was clean out day at Kettler Iceplex and News4's Jason Pugh caught up with the players before they head their separate ways. The disappointed Caps did not hide their emotions.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[News4 Playoff Beards Raised $,2700 for Charity]]> Wed, 11 May 2016 20:15:37 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000014684975_1200x675_683984963631.jpg With the Capitals out of the Stanley Cup playoffs, Storm Team4 Chief Meteorologist Doug Kammerer and Transportation Reporter Adam Tuss shaved off their playoff beards. They raised more than $2,700 for the Capitals "Beard-a-Thon" initative.]]> <![CDATA[The Capitals Are Out. And Yet ...]]> Wed, 11 May 2016 18:37:20 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/20150511+Caps+Lose+2.jpg

For the eighth time in the Alexander Ovechkin era of Washington Capitals hockey, the Capitals failed to qualify for the Eastern Conference Final.

Understandably, Ovechkin and the rest of his crew were filled with disappointment following their Game 6 overtime loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins, which eliminated them from playoff contention.

Despite overcoming a three-goal deficit, the Capitals didn’t seem to have anything left in the tank, and the Penguins’ speed was simply too much to handle. The game ended just six and a half minutes into overtime, when Nick Bonino scored from the doorstep of the goal mouth.

"We made a great push after 3-0," Ovechkin said. "We tied the game, have opportunity to win it in the end. 

"But I'm proud of my team, I'm proud of my teammates," Ovechkin continued. "But, again, we lost in the second round. So, it sucks." 

It’s Ovechkin’s team, and he will be the one that will have narrative after narrative written about him and his playoff woes, but to place the blame on Ovechkin is blind ignorance and pure laziness. In his 12 playoff games, Ovechkin finished with five goals and seven assists. More specifically, in the second round series against the Penguins, Ovechkin finished with two goals and five assists in his six games.

That’s just one less point than Pittsburgh’s heavy offensive hitters, Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang, combined.

To point out the Capitals’ recent playoff pushes falling short is absolutely correct, and to expect Washington to do more of the same next season is even understandably reasonable. But it would ignore the fact that this year’s edition of the Capitals was the best, most complete team ever assembled around Ovechkin. The team was a 120-point juggernaut that could win games with their powerful offense, their stout defense or their soon-to-be Vezina goaltender behind them.

And the vast majority of key contributors will be right back on the team again next season. The Capitals have just three players set to become unrestricted free agents this offseason: Jason Chimera, Mike Richards and Mike Weber. The team’s restricted free agents -- Marcus Johansson, Dmitry Orlov, Tom Wilson and Michael Latta -- won’t see dramatic pay raises that will completely break the bank.

It’s yet to be seen whether or not any of those unrestricted free agents will return next season, but the lack of upcoming free agents gives Washington the perfect balance between maintaining the core contributors and the luxury of a little wiggle room for a new player for a cap that could potentially rise by $3 million if the NHL Players Association chooses to exercise its escalator clause.

The Capitals could also expect to see some young playmakers enter the mix. Jakub Vrana, the Capitals’ 13th overall pick in the 2014 draft, averaged nearly a point per game (34 points in 36 games) in his first season in the AHL with the Hershey Bears. He has the potential to be a top-six wing for Washington, but with an overabundance of talent already in the mix, the Capitals may be spoiled enough to use him on an offensive third line.

Riley Barber, a 2012 sixth-round pick, finished with 26 goals and 29 assists in 74 games of his first AHL season, making him the 20th scorer in the AHL this season. Barber can possibly add a scoring punch on the third or fourth line. And Madison Bowey, an offensive-defenseman that ranked as the 15th-best defenseman prospect in the NHL by The Hockey News, could provide the Capitals with a bit of defensive depth after a bit more marinating in the AHL.

Not to mention, players already on the roster can reasonably expect to see a boost in play next season. Evgeny Kuznetsov finished with 77 points in just his second full season. And while he only had one goal since the beginning of March, he was still creating chances every time he was on the ice. This year was Andre Burakovsky’s first full season. Same with Nate Schmidt. Orlov missed the entire year last season with a hand injury, making his 82-game campaign his first stretch in two years.

Wilson set a career high in points with 23, and while he may never pan out to be the offensive power forward everyone envisioned on his draft day, isn’t it hard to believe he’s just 22?

It’s entirely reasonable to expect the Capitals to fall short again next season based on past performances. But it’s also entirely reasonable to expect an improvement again next season.

Ovechkin has every right to be proud of his team. They accomplished a lot this season, but they simply fell short once again to a team that was playing better hockey.

So, sure, mark this playoff exit as Ovechkin’s eighth career disappointment. But you should recognize that the elite scorer is inching ever so close to his ultimate goal. And, hey, have you ever heard of a guy named Steve Yzerman? He’s a former Detroit Red Wing, a three-time Stanley Cup winner and a Hall of Famer that is widely considered one of the greatest captains the NHL has ever seen.

Yzerman didn’t win his first cup until his 12th season in the NHL.

Next year will be Ovechkin’s 12th season.

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar]]>
<![CDATA[Hornqvist Scores in OT, Penguins Beat Capitals 3-2]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 23:16:14 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Game4.jpg

Patric Hornqvist beat Braden Holtby between the legs 2:31 into overtime to give the Pittsburgh Penguins a 3-2 victory over the Washington Capitals on Wednesday night in Game 4 of the second-round series.

Washington's Mike Weber tried to clear a shot, but the puck went right to Hornqvist in the circle. He buried it for his fifth goal of the postseason to give the Penguins a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference semifinals. Game 5 is Saturday night in Washington.

The Penguins ended an eight-game losing streak in overtime playoff games.

Matt Cullen and Trevor Daley also scored for Pittsburgh, and rookie goalie Matt Murray stopped 34 shots.

Penguins captain Crosby left briefly in the third period after getting slashed by Capitals star Alex Ovechkin.

Jay Beagle and John Carlson scored for Washington. Holtby made 29 saves, but the Capitals dropped a third straight game, something they did once all season.

The Capitals dominated Game 3 everywhere but the scoreboard, falling 3-2 behind a spectacular 47-save performance by Murray. Washington coach Barry Trotz insisted there was ``a good vibe'' coming from the President's Trophy winners, pointing to the way his team tilted the ice as proof the results would come if the Capitals kept at it.

The Penguins realized they were lucky to escape Game 3 with the series lead and responded with a far better performance even with star defenseman Kris Letang forced to sit out after the league ruled his hit on Marcus Johansson on Monday night was late and illegal.

The suspension forced Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan to return Justin Schultz to the lineup. The Penguins acquired Schultz from Edmonton in February and he hadn't played since Game 1 of the opening playoff series against the Rangers. Schultz was steady as were most of his teammates, who were far better at protecting their rookie goaltender than they were 48 hours earlier.

Still, Washington needed just 2:58 to take its first lead since Game 1 as Beagle beat Pittsburgh defenseman Ben Lovejoy to the puck on a dump in and flipped a backhander Murray's way despite being nearly parallel to the goal line. The shot sailed over Murray's shoulders and into the far top corner.

Daley's first playoff goal in nearly two years tied it later in the period, as his shot from the top of the right circle deflected off Washington's Karl Alzner and by Holtby. The 39-year-old Cullen, playing between a pair of forwards _ Tom Kuhnhackl and Oskar Sundqvist _ who were born when Cullen was well into his teens, put Pittsburgh in front by taking a stretch pass off the boards from Brian Dumoulin and beating Holtby between the legs.

The goal was part of perhaps Pittsburgh's best period since Game 2 but the Penguins couldn't escape it with the lead. Justin Williams stripped Derrick Pouliot deep in the Pittsburgh zone and slipped it across the ice to Carlson, who had little trouble firing it over Murray's extended glove set the stage for the latest dramatic moment in a series that is living up to its considerable hype.

NOTES: Pittsburgh went 0 for 4 on the power play and is 0 for 14 with the man advantage during the series. ... The Capitals scratched D Nate Schmidt, who struggled in Game 3. ... Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Gerrit Cole watched from the front row next to the Washington bench and was caught on camera good-naturedly yelling at the Capitals before being chastised by an usher.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[NBC Play-by-Play Man Doc Emrick Previews Caps-Penguins Game 4]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 18:04:38 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000014603907_1200x675_679439939906.jpg News4 Sports Reporter Carol Maloney chats with NBC hockey lead play-by-play announcer Doc Emrick about Game 4 of the second round series between the Capitals and Penguins. Topics include the suspensions of Brooks Orpik and Kris Letang, the play of Alex Ovechkin, and just how he got the nickname "Doc."]]> <![CDATA[Caps' Hope Offensive Production Translates to More Goals]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 18:08:54 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Capitals+v+Penguins+GettyImages-527448888.jpg

The Pittsburgh Penguins walked away with a 3-2 win in Game 3, but it cost them their top defenseman.

Kris Letang was suspended one game for a high hit on Marcus Johansson, which means the Penguins will be without their clear-cut best defenseman for Game 4. Letang is averaging just more than 32 minutes per game in the series, almost 10 minutes more than Brian Dumoulin, who is second on the team in time on the ice.

Assuming Olli Maatta doesn’t dress for Game 4 (he missed Game 3 following Brooks Orpik’s high hit in Game 2), the Penguins will be without their top pair on the blue line, giving the Capitals a prime opportunity to even out the series at two games apiece.

As far as series losses go, the Capitals are relatively satisfied with their performance in Game 3. At even-strength play, Washington managed 43 shots on goal, much more than Pittsburgh’s 19. The Capitals’ hope the offensive production continues, but the overall result is different.

“We got a good vibe coming out of this game,” coach Barry Trotz said following the Game 3 loss. “It sort of reminds me a lot of last year against the Islanders (the Capitals fell behind 2-1 in the series), where we weren’t quite where we needed to be, and then, once we got there, it was a good buy in and we were fine. We’re looking forward to Game 4.”

In a series filled with brutal collisions, highlighted and marred by two suspensions, it’s the Capitals that have been powering the way in the hits department. Through three games, the Capitals have 132 total hits, 57 more than the Penguins on the series.

Normally, that’s a bad sign, meaning the Capitals are throwing significantly more hits because they simply don’t have the puck as often as the Penguins. But the Capitals have managed 215 total shot attempts at Penguins’ goaltender Matt Murray, 23 more than the Penguins against Braden Holtby, suggesting the Capitals are possessing the puck fairly often. That means the Capitals know their advantage is their overall physicality. After all, the Capitals’ average player weight is 205 pounds, while the Penguins’ average roster weight is just 197 pounds.

“When we’re hitting and we’re forechecking, we’re playing fast. That’s our best hockey,” Tom Wilson said following yesterday’s morning skate. “When you’re hitting guys, that means you’re in the forechecking and you’re playing hard. We’re not looking to change. We’re looking to play Game 4 exactly the way we played Game 3. Just hard and intense.”

Slight tweaks to the Capitals’ lineup in Tuesday’s practice may come to fruition for Game 4. Dmitry Orlov, who was healthy scratched in Game 2 but filled in for the suspended Brooks Orpik in Game 3, took line rushes with John Carlson, suggesting Orlov may slot in on the second pairing. That means Taylor Chorney and Nate Schmidt will likely be the bottom pair.

The Capitals held an optional skate prior to Wednesday’s game. In Tuesday’s practice, Marcus Johansson did not dress. Trotz explained Johansson would be further evaluated prior to Game 4. Johansson didn’t hit the ice in the morning skate prior to today’s game, but he was seen kicking a soccer ball with T.J. Oshie, Matt Niskanen and Karl Alzner.

For the Penguins, Eric Fehr and Bryan Rust did not participate in the morning skate. Head coach Mike Sullivan said both will be game-time decisions. Rust was injured in the first period of Game 3 blocking a shot and did not return. Should one or both not play in Game 4, either Oskar Sundqvist or Tom Sesito will likely take their place.

With Letang’s absence, Justin Schultz is expected to be inserted in the lineup. The Penguins sent the Edmonton Oilers a 2016 third-round draft pick for Schultz in late February. The offensive-minded defenseman has four goals and 14 assists on the year, but just one goal and seven assists as a Penguin. Expect Trevor Daley to take Kris Letang’s spot on the power play, and Daley and Dumoulin will serve as Pittsburgh’s top defensive pair.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Terps Do 'Running Man Challenge' on 'Ellen' Show]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 11:08:25 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/050316+running+man+challenge.jpg

The University of Maryland basketball players who threw down a "running man challenge" to athletes across the country showed their dancing chops on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" Tuesday.

Terrapins players Jaylen Brantley and Jared Nickens appeared on "Ellen," where they explained what went into the viral dance move.

The Terps began posting Instagram videos last month of them dancing to the 1996 Ghost Town DJ's hit "My Boo." They do the dance — which is a far cry from the running man of the '80s — in the middle of a street, popping out from under a blanket and after getting off a phone call.

Players at Virginia Tech, Villanova University and the University of Miami all accepted the challenge, posting videos of themselves doing the dance. But it turns out two high school students from New Jersey started it.

Jeremiah Hall and Kevin Vincent of Hillside, New Jersey, told DeGeneres they invented the dance when they were bored in a finance class. Later, they saw that Brantley and Nickens did their own version, which went viral.

"We was like, 'What, wait? We made this!" one of the teens said.

Nickens said they were just trying to keep their team happy.

"Basketball is such a grind, especially at the college level, so we just try to keep our teammates loose in the locker room," he said.

DeGeneres presented the high schoolers with an oversized check for $10,000 from Shutterfly to fund their future college tuition. The TV host said NCAA rules barred her from giving the Terps players much, so she presented them with tiny black shorts with their names and team numbers printed on the rear.

The Terps and teens then danced across the stage.

Photo Credit: Michael Rozman / Warner Bros.
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<![CDATA[Vets Take to the Ice With Warriors Hockey Program]]> Mon, 02 May 2016 14:30:05 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000014569304_1200x675_677827651560.jpg Craig Fitzpatrick of the U.S.A Warriors Hockey Program discusses the program, which helps veterans with disabilities or PTSD learn how to play and get equipped for ice hockey.]]> <![CDATA[Diehard Caps Fan Larry King: 'Red Through and Through']]> Fri, 29 Apr 2016 16:48:41 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/216*120/2016-04-29_1643.jpg Larry King has been a passionate Caps fan for years -- and he's not shy about it. Here's what he had to say in advance of Thursday's playoff game against the Penguins.]]> <![CDATA[How the Caps Stack Up Against the Penguins]]> Wed, 27 Apr 2016 15:01:37 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/capsGettyImages-513219946.jpg

For the first time since 2009, the Washington Capitals will face the Pittsburgh Penguins in the playoffs.

Last time the two teams met in the playoffs, Sidney Crosby's Penguins walked away with a Game 7 win over Alex Ovechkin's Capitals.

The big names from that series -- Crosby, Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeni Malkin --  are still with their respective teams. But a slew of new faces strewn about the two teams offers a new, fresh take on the heated rivalry.

Take a look at how each team's units stack up against one another.


In the Capitals' opening series, offensive contributions really only came from four players at 5v5: Backstrom, Ovechkin, T.J. Oshie and Marcus Johansson. The only other two players to record a point at even strength were Jay Beagle and Jason Chimera, and Chimera's single point came from a lucky half-ice shot that slipped between Steve Mason's legs.

That spells trouble for the Capitals' second and third lines, which might see a bit of a shakeup in the Eastern Conference semi-final matchup. Marcus Johansson has been taking shifts as the second line left wing in morning skates, flanking Evgeny Kuznetsov, opposite of Justin Williams. That bumps Andre Burakovsky down on the third line along with Chimera and Mike Richards.

While the second line wasn't directly putting points on the board, they were still creating scoring chances. In fact, Kuznetsov's 15 scoring chances in the opening series was the second-highest on the team, only behind Ovechkin's 18. Williams recorded the third most with 13, and Burakovsky had the fourth most with 11.

That's encouraging, because while they aren't directly scoring goals, they are still generating threatening offense. And considering the large quantity of scoring chances the second-line was contributing, a few are bound to go in the net eventually if they continue pumping out offense.

The forward unit for Pittsburgh is quite clearly its strong suit. It's led by big names Crosby, Malkin, Phil Kessel and Patric Hornqvist, but it's riddled with a tremendous amount of depth and little-known names.

Conor Sheary, who has played in only 44 regular season games over the course of his entire career, is penciled in as Crosby's left wing on the top line. Sheary is only 5 feet 8, but he's highly aggressive defensively and will look to generate offense off of the rush. Sheary loves to force turnovers and create odd-man rushes, and his speed allows him to break away from the opposition more times than not.

Nick Bonino filled in nicely during Malkin's prolonged absence at the end of the regular season. He closed out the regular season with 13 points in the Penguins' last 10 games, and he continued that production into Pittsburgh's opening series against the New York Rangers, finishing with five points in as many games. He will be joined with Carl Hagelin, who is another player that plays with a lot of speed.

Bryan Rust, Tom Kunhackl, Eric Fehr and Matt Cullen provide a bottom-six scoring punch. Just how deep is the Penguins' forward unit? The bottom-six forwards managed to record six of the Penguins' 21 goals in the opening series.


The shutdown tandem of Karl Alzner and Matt Niskanen was rock solid in the opening series. Despite starting the majority of their shifts in the defensive zone against the Flyers' top line, the Capitals were still able to generate more shot attempts than they allowed when those two were on the ice.

Niskanen and Alzner will see heavy doses of Crosby, and if they can even perform at a fraction of what they played at against the Flyers, Crosby is going to have a very difficult time this series.

Brooks Orpik is taking shifts at practice, indicating he may be ready for a return. If he's ready, he'll slot in right along John Carlson, whose three goals were a major reason the Capitals' power play was able to convert on 8 of its 27 opportunities.

With Orpik's return, Nate Schmidt should slot in right alongside Dmitry Orlov, and the two should see favorable matchups that should help the Capitals generate offense.

The Penguins don't have a shutdown tandem quite like the Capitals, but they do have a lot of puck movers on the blue line that will look to jump into the offensive play. Kris Letang will be the most dangerous blueliner in the series, and he will likely be paired with Olli Maata. That's two offensive-minded defensemen paired with one another, and if both jump into the offensive play, it could lead them to be susceptible to an odd-man rush.

Trevor Daley and Ian Cole will serve as the Penguins' second pairing. Daley, whom the Penguins acquired in a trade with the Chicago Blackhawks mid-season, is another offensive-minded defenseman, but he's pretty responsible in his own zone.

Ben Lovejoy and Brian Dumoulin will likely be paired against the Capitals' third and fourth lines pretty consistently. Justin Schultz, another offensive-minded defenseman, may see spot starts in the series.


Braden Holtby continued along with his storybook season with another stellar opening series against the Flyers. Holtby's .968 save percentage and his two shutouts leads all goaltenders in the playoffs. That series raised Holtby's career playoff save percentage to .940, and dropped his goals against average to 1.76. In 17 of Holtby's 20 playoff wins, the 26-year-old goaltender has allowed one goal or fewer.

The Penguins' goaltending situation is a bit up in the air.

Normal Penguins mainstay Marc-Andre Fleury hasn't made an appearance in this year's edition of the playoffs due to a concussion sustained late in the season. That injury opened the door for Matt Murray, who then proceeded to get a concussion of his own, causing him to miss the beginning of the playoffs. And that opened the door for Jeff Zatkoff, who allowed six goals in his two playoff appearances. 

Murray recovered from his injury, returned for the last three games of the series and walked away with three wins. He's good to go for this series matchup. But Fleury is still a bit questionable, although he has been practicing.

If it is Murray who ends up going, that's a 21-year-old goaltender with 16 total NHL games on his resume. In those 16 games, Murray has managed to record a .935 save percentage. Murray also played against the Capitals twice already this season. His save percentage in those two games? It was .910, which earned him a win and a loss.

And if it ends up being Fleury in the net, he's had a difficult time over the course of his career in the playoffs. In his 12-year career, Fleury has maintained a .906 save percentage, though in his most recent playoff effort, a first-round exit against the Rangers a year ago, Fleury held strong for a .927 save percentage.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dates, Times Announced for Caps-Pens Playoff Games]]> Tue, 26 Apr 2016 17:17:37 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/180*120/513222078.jpg

The schedule for the second round matchup in the NHL playoffs between the Washington Capitals and the Pittsburgh Penguins has been announced.

The Capitals, by virtue of their number one seed in the Eastern Conference, will host the first two games on Thursday, April 28 and Saturday, April 30. Both games are scheduled to start at 8 p.m.

The series moves to the Steel City for the next two games. Game 3 is Monday, May 2 and Game 4 is Wednesday, May 4. Those games also start at 8 p.m.

If necessary, Game 5 is back in Washington on Saturday, May 7, Game 6 would be in Pittsburgh on Tuesday, May 10, and Game 7 returns to D.C. on Thursday, May 12. The start times of those games have not been announced.

<![CDATA[Get Your Caps Tickets for the Semifinals!]]> Mon, 25 Apr 2016 19:21:25 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/203*120/523837380.jpg

A small number of Washington Capitals individual game tickets for the 2016 Stanley Cup Eastern Conference semifinals went on sale at 7 p.m. Monday.

The Capitals have home ice advantage for the duration of the playoffs. They take on the Pittsburgh Penguins in semifinals. Games 1 and 2 -- and possibly Games 5 and 7 if the series goes that far -- will be played at the Verizon Center.

The NHL has yet to announce when the games will be played.

You can get your tickets by calling1-800-745-3000, going on WashingtonCaps.com, going to Kettler Capitals Iceplex and at all Ticketmaster outlets.

Additional all-inclusive ticket packages are available at the Capitals Rinkside Club, the Budweiser Brew House and the Draft Ops Fantasy Lounge. The packages include a ticket to the game, a gourmet buffet in the event level of Rinkside Club, unlimited beer, wine and soda, amenities that run one hour prior to puck drop through the second intermission, and a Washington Capitals t-shirt.

Since 2008-2009, the Capitals have had 313 consecutive sellouts at the Verizon Center, including the playoffs.

For more information on tickets, call 202-266-CAPS or visit WashingtonCaps.com.

Photo Credit: NHLI via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[City Leaders to Break Ground on DC United Stadium]]> Mon, 25 Apr 2016 12:05:17 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000014485383_1200x675_673036355910.jpg D.C. soccer fans will soon have a new home. City leaders are breaking ground Monday on a new stadium for DC United. News4's Derrick Ward is live at Buzzard Point.]]> <![CDATA[Caps Beat Flyers 1-0, Advance to 2nd Round in Playoffs]]> Sun, 24 Apr 2016 15:02:34 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/203*120/523837380.jpg

In a game filled with hitting, phantom penalty calls and great goaltending, the Washington Capitals beat the Philadelphia Flyers, 1-0, and advanced to the second round of the NHL Playoffs.

After a scoreless first period where the Caps had a 5-on-3 power play and outshot the Flyers, 12-5, it took until the second period for Washington to beat Philadelphia Flyers goalie Michal Neuvirth.

Caps All-Star Alex Ovechkin did a great job fighting off two flyers at the blue line to feed the puck to Marcus Johansson streaking down the middle. Johansson quickly got the puck to Nicklas Backstrom on the right wing, who roofed it past Neuvirth to break the scoreless tie.

It was the first goal given up by Neuvirth in more than 70 shots on goal spread out over the past game plus.

The Flyers peppered Caps goalie Braden Holtby, putting pressure on Washington in the final frame, but Holtby stood tall, preventing any shots from denting the net.

The teams combined for more than 70 hits, each seeking to find a physical advantage over the other.

Refereeing will be talked about in the coming days after Backstrom was tagged for a double minor high sticking penalty after Flyers Ryan White was hit in the nose and blooded by a stick. However, replays showed it was White’s teammate, and not Backstrom, who actually hit White.

In the ensuing 4-minute power play, Caps Matt Niskanen was whistled for hooking. Once again, replays show Niskanen’s stick was on top, not under, the stick of Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds.

The Capitals were successful in killing a 5-on-3 and 5-on-4 power play from the calls.

The Caps will take on the Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round.

Photo Credit: NHLI via Getty Images]]>