Evgeny Kuznetsov faced a challenging matchup against the Vegas Golden Knights, as he was moved to the second line after Coach Spencer Carbery broke up his partnership with Alex Ovechkin. But Kuznetsov’s performance did not support Carbery’s decision; in fact, he was demoted to the fourth line and eventually benched at the end of the game.
Against Vegas, the Capitals’ new second line struggled, conceding the first goal of the night and being outshot and out-chanced by the Golden Knights. Kuznetsov’s roughing call late in the game added to his woes, resulting in limited ice time and ultimately being benched by Carbery.
Kuznetsov’s 15:20 total time on ice during the game against Vegas was his lowest of the season, and his struggles to produce offensively have been evident throughout the 2023-24 season. Despite Coach Carbery’s reasoning for the lineup change and the need for a different look, Kuznetsov’s future with the team remains uncertain.
With a practice on Sunday to make potential lineup changes, Carbery will have a chance to assess and adjust his strategy before the Capitals’ upcoming game against the Arizona Coyotes on Monday.
Headline photo: Alan Dobbins/RMNB
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