NEW YORK -- News and notes from Monday’s morning skates in preparation for tonight’s Game 3 between the Capitals and Rangers:
Clowe game-time decision: Rangers ruffian Ryane Clowe [suspected concussion] skated again on Monday but ruled himself a game-time decision for tonight. "I feel pretty good out there," he said. "Like anyone else at this time of year, no one's ever 100 percent, but when I come back I'll feel capable of everything I can bring and my style of play -- obviously, a physical style -- so that's what I'm looking at here.”
Uncharted territory: In 21 playoff series the Capitals have never held a 3-0 series lead. They are 0-6 in Game 3s after taking a two games to none lead.
Too casual?: Following their morning skate, Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby told reporters he thought his teammates were too loose heading into Game 3. Alex Ovechkin seemed plenty serious. “Of course we lead 2-0 but the series goes to four wins. We're not going to stop until the end. It’s a big game. The organization knows it. It’s going to be a fun game and it’s going to be a hard game. Sometimes I can’t wait until game time.”
Manhattan malice: Ovechkin says it’s fun getting booed in opposing arenas and expects nothing less from New York fans tonight. “I get booed in almost every city,” he said. Jason Chimera agrees. “It’s one of those buildings you love to play in. People yelling at you, calling you names. It’s pretty fun.”
Laich update: Brooks Laich [sports hernia surgery] did not skate with the team but spent time churning away on a stationary bike. Laich underwent the surgery in mid-April and could be cleared for practice before the end of this week.
Kuznetsov update: According to a report from Sport-Express, Capitals top forward prospect Evgeny Kuznetsov still plans on playing in Russia next season. “I have decided for myself to spend the next year in Russia and then go to the NHL,” he said. “Why should I rush?”