Capitals/Oilers preview: Red hot Washington faces youthful Edmonton
For the first time in 2011, the Washington Capitals are taking their act west.
The Capitals, who are off to their best start in franchise history at 7-0-0, will look to extend their season-opening winning streak on Thursday night against the Edmonton Oilers.
A win at Rexall Place would put Washington in rare company - only five other teams in the history of the NHL have won eight straight games to start a season.
In fact, the Caps are three off the league record for most wins to start a season; the 1993-94 Toronto Maple Leafs and 2006-07 Buffalo Sabres both started their respective seasons 10-0-0.
What more, Alexander Ovechkin is getting hot at the right time. After tallying just a goal and two assists in Washington's first five games, Ovie has four points in the Caps' last two outings.
Meanwhile, in goal, Tomas Vokoun has seized the spotlight, winning his first six games in a Washington uniform.
The Oilers have been one of the league's surprise stories in the season's first month. Picked by many to finish near the bottom of the Western Conference, Edmonton has surged to a 4-2-2 start, mainly on the back of rookie Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
Nugent-Hopkins, who was the 1st overall pick in the 2011 Draft, leads the team with five goals and eight assists.
Edmonton boasts a grizzled veteran between the pipes who's finding early success as well. At 38, Nikolai Khabibulin has posted a miniscule 0.97 goals against average in five starts.
Faceoff in Alberta is set for 9:30 p.m.