Washington Capitals: Breaking down Connor McMichael’s bright future

Connor McMichael, Washington Capitals Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Connor McMichael, Washington Capitals Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports /

Alex Ovechkin is not getting any younger and in a matter of six seasons from now, there will be much different faces on the Washington Capitals. The biggest prospect right now for the Capitals is Connor McMichael and the future is bright surrounding the young center.

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Right now, barring a trade, the Caps are well stocked on centers. They have Nicklas Backstrom, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Lars Eller and Nic Dowd. If one of those players was to go down with an injury this upcoming season, expect Peter Laviolette to call up Connor McMichael.

What would McMichael bring to the Caps? He would instantly bring the team youth and speed. His puck handling and stick handling are phenomenal and he’s got a goal scoring touch. The Caps selected McMichael in the first round at 25th overall in 2019. In the season prior to that selection, McMichael had 36 goals and 36 assists for the London Knights.

McMichael followed that up with a monster season with 47 goals and 55 assists for 102 points before the season was shutdown due to COVID-19. The rules stated that McMichael wasn’t old enough to join the AHL but the league made an exception as the OHL season was shut down.

During McMichael’s first season with the Hershey Bears, he appeared in 33 games and had 14 goals and 13 assists for 27 points. Now with the Caps trying to get younger, a big question entering training camp is does McMichael have enough experience to make the opening night lineup?

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He may be able to crack it if an injury happens before the season but there might be some time spent for him in the press box as a healthy scratch until that happens. He does have one game of NHL experience, playing in a January contest against the Buffalo Sabres. Here’s hoping the team gives him more games next season to get an extended look at their number one prospect.