Capitals vs Sabers live analysis and updates (February 26, 2023)

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The Washington Capitals have just two games left before the NHL’s March 3 trade deadline approaches. The first of those games comes on the road in Buffalo, where the young, upstart Sabers hosts a Caps team that has won just three of their last 10.

Starting in net back-to-back days for the Caps will be Darcy Kuemper. Kuemper has conceded three or more goals in five straight starts and in 12 of his last 17. He’ll look to put an end to that against the Sabers as he comes right back in the net after a victory over the Rangers on Saturday.

The Sunday matinee game is on NBC Sports Washington and the puck drops at KeyBank Center a little after 1 p.m.



Pregame Shenanigans

1st period

Milano-Strome-Oshie and Fehervary-Jensen get the start. Darcy Kuemper hits Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen in the net.

Huge chances for TJ Oshie, Jack Quinn and Alex Ovechkin all in the first 90 seconds of the match. Both goaltenders make their first big stops.

Luukkonen stops Nicolas Aube-Kubel in a breakaway. Ridiculous pace to start the afternoon.

🚨 1-0 Sabres. Dylan Cozens rounds out a big rushing opportunity. So many very fast, very good young players on this Buffalo team.

It’s Cozens again who uses his speed to create a breakaway, but this time Kuemper is ready.

🚨 1-1 draw. The puck goes down the other side and Nick Jensen finds Dylan Strome for a quick goal.

🚨 2-1 Sabres. Evgeny Kuznetsov spun and sent a blind backhand pass straight into the slot to Tage Thompson. Thompson ripped home his 40th of the season.

🚨 2-2 draw. They barely dropped the puck for the throw-in after Thompson scored and Dylan Strome found TJ Oshie on the side of the net to tie things back up. Four goals in his last three games for Osh.

Thus ended period one. An absolutely insane back and forth affair.

2nd period

🚨 3-2 sabers. Jeff Skinner clears some loose change behind Kuemper.

🚨 4-2 Sabres. Kyle Okposo and Zemgus Girgensons make Matt Irwin and Dylan McIlrath look stupid and put Buffalo in second.

🚨 5-2 Sabres. Vinnie Hinostroza adds another. The Sabers walked through the Caps as if they didn’t exist. Kuemper clicks his stick on the target frame and Charlie Lindgren takes over from him.

Darcy Kuemper breaking his stick and throwing his mask away is every Capitals fan this season

🚨 6-2 Sabres. Dylan Cozens is no nicer to Lindgren than he is to Kuemper. That kid can absolutely fly and has the finish to boot.

🚨 6-3 Sabres. Alex Ovechkin blocked his 33rd marker of the season. Ovi’s first in February after going six games without one.

🚨 6-4 Sabres. Sonny Milano finds an escape opportunity and makes no mistake in a forward-to-backhand move past Luukkonen.

Matt Irwin attempted to gift the Sabers a seventh goal, but Charlie Lindgren was on hand to stop Skinner at the buzzer. Six goals in total in that second frame. Utter chaos.

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