When asked if he's proven he can still be a regular player rather than the spare part the Bruins saw him as being, Chara said: "I'm just trying to focus on trying to help this team as best I can". There are lots of new numbers on the depth chart this season, and they've all contributed to the Capitals' early success this season.
On Saturday, Laviolette sounded very much like a coach whose team is going through a tremendous amount of adversity and just wants to keep collecting points in the standings.
Washington, it would seem, are making believers out of everyone except the oddsmakers. A two-time Stanley Cup victor who helped eliminate Washington from the playoffs in back-to-back seasons, Schultz is now not only Brian MacLellan's best offseason addition, but arguably the most effective Capitals blueliner of this young season.
Chara collected a goal and an assist in Thursday's win, becoming the fifth defenseman in National Hockey League history to post a multi-point game after his 43rd birthday.
The Capitals have won 16 of their last 18 head-to-heads with the Bruins.
There's more to Saturday's game (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+) than this emotional reunion: The Capitals are in first place in the East Division with 13 points in eight games, and Boston is right behind them with 11 points in seven games. He was playing just fantastic at both ends of the ice.
Canada shuts doors to Caribbean over Covid
Legault and Ontario Premier Doug Ford have urged Ottawa to impose mandatory testing upon arrival in Canada as well. As of Friday, the country recorded more than 769,000 cases of coronavirus and 19,000 deaths.
Rookie Vitek Vanecek made 40 saves, including one spectacular diving stop in a first period heavily tilted toward Boston, in his sixth consecutive start. Washington went 0-0-2 against the Penguins.
And we are not even 10 games into the season yet. Despite all the rubber being thrown at him, he still sports a respectable.918 save percentage. "I think these are two really good teams, playing for two points that are going to be out there tomorrow to grab", Chara said.
Boston's first-period onslaught in Saturday's game was on-brand; the Bruins have outshot the opposition by a combined total of 97-41 in the team's eight games this season, outscoring foes 5-3 in the first frame in the process. In the comeback game versus the Islanders, Washington got two goals from Conor Sheary and one from Zdeno Chara. I thought we fought back in the second period.
Missing Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov and Ilya Samsonov for a fourth consecutive contest due to COVID-19 protocols - plus Lars Eller on Thursday - the Caps scored six unanswered to stun Barry Trotz and the Islanders for the second game in a row, this time by the score of 6-3.
"We have to do our jobs", Chara said.