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Capitals Insider: October 19, 2008 - October 25, 2008

Morning Skate Update (Updated)

A few quick notes from American Airlines Center: Jose Theodore will start in goal while David Steckel and Eric Fehr will be the scratches. Viktor Kozlov, meantime, is back from a four game absence (knee sprain) and will skate on the top line. And defenseman John Erskine, after missing a...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 25, 2008; 12:42 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (163)
 
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Afternoon Update From Dallas

After getting in around 4:30 this morning, the Caps held a team meeting at American Airlines Center this afternoon to review some video from last night's 2-1 loss in Phoenix. Practice was optional, and many players decided not to bus over to the Stars' suburban practice rink. I caught up...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 24, 2008; 4:32 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
 
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Morning Reading List

Here's some of today's notable reads as you (like me) try to blink off the effects of watching last night's game in Phoenix. First to kick us off, Tarik's game story for the paper. The Arizona Republic's take: Tellqvist, Coyotes top Capitals Around the Southeast: *Raleigh News & Observer: Hurricanes...

By Katie Carrera  |  October 24, 2008; 10:27 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (57)
 
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Caps Collapse Late, lose 2-1 in Phoenix.

With a 6 a.m. flight to Dallas in my immediate future, I've got to be brief tonight. *The Caps wasted Jose Theodore's best performance of the young season, in my opinion. He was downright dominant for about 40 minutes. Then, well, bad things started happening all over the ice for...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 24, 2008; 1:41 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (68)
 
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Erskine Out Tonight

Defenseman John Erskine will miss tonight's game in Phoenix with a bruised calf. He'll be replaced in the lineup by Sergei Fedorov, who will move from first line center to the blue line. Fedorov will be paired with Milan Jurcina. Erskine's absence leaves Donald Brashear and Matt Bradley to handle...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 23, 2008; 8:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (133)
 
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Erskine Gets $2.5 Million

I'm told that defenseman John Erskine will earn $1.25 million in each of the next two seasons after earning $550,000 this season. If you read between the lines, his new contract shows the Caps are counting on him to contribute on a nightly basis as a No. 5 or 6....

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 23, 2008; 6:58 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (31)
 
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Erskine Gets Extension, Questionable For Tonight (Updated)

John Erskine limped onto the ice for the morning skate and stayed out there for the entire session. But he was clearly uncomfortable and Coach Bruce Boudreau said he isn't sure if the rugged defenseman will be able to play tonight against the Coyotes. If Erskine can't go, Sergei Fedorov...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 23, 2008; 2:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (90)
 
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Morning Reading List

Unfortunately you still have to wait until 10 p.m. for tonight's start against Phoenix at Jobing.com Arena, but here's a smattering of Caps and hockey news to help get you through the day. From the Arizona Republic: Ovechkin the next 'Great' in NHL? From the Calgary Herald, more aftermath of...

By Katie Carrera  |  October 23, 2008; 9:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (123)
 
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Practice Update From Glendale (Updated)

Practice started around 1:30, and after a brief warm-up and some systems drills, Coach Bruce Boudreau and his players went to work on the team's biggest problem: the power play, which, before tonight's games, ranked 16th (5 for 32). What was obvious from the stands was that Boudreau put more...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 22, 2008; 5:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (73)
 
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Reading List

As we wait for the Caps to hit the ice for practice at Jobing.com Arena (which won't be until 4:30 p.m. on the East coast) here's a collection of today's Caps' stories. Yesterday's link experiment was such a hit that we're going to compile a sample of Caps' stories from...

By Katie Carrera  |  October 22, 2008; 1:42 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (31)
 
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Power Play Lacks, Um, Power

There's no getting around it: the Caps' power play is pretty pathetic these days. After Saturday's 1-for-8 performance against the Devils, there was reason to believe Alex Ovechkin and Co. would turn things around against the Flames, who had blown leads in four straight games and ranked at the bottom...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 22, 2008; 1:15 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (157)
 
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Notes From Calgary; TV Ratings Up

Some notes and quotes from the morning skate to get you ready for tonight's game at Pengrowth Saddledome: *Jose Theodore, as expected, will start in net while the forward lines and 'D' pairings are the same as yesterday. (Donald Brashear is in and Eric Fehr is out.) *Flames Coach Mike...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 21, 2008; 2:56 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (296)
 
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Neuvirth to Czech Republic

GM George McPhee confirmed this morning that goaltending prospect Michal Neuvirth will play this season for Trinec of the Czech Extraliga. "There wasn't going to be enough ice time for everybody," McPhee said, referring to Hershey. "This way, everybody plays a lot, which is what we wanted." The Caps can...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 21, 2008; 2:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (23)
 
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Caps Return to Calgary

The Caps' first visit to the Saddledome since Oct. 30, 2006 has created quite a buzz in Calgary leading up to tonight's game (The Caps' high number of Alberta and other Western Canada natives probably doesn't hurt either). So for your morning reading, here are some of the stories that...

By Katie Carrera  |  October 21, 2008; 9:12 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (67)
 
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Caps Sign Holtby

The Caps have signed goaltender Braden Holtby to a three-year entry level contract. The 19-year-old fourth round draft pick (2008) is 6-3-0 this season for the WHL's Saskatoon Blades. He's also got a 2.23 goals against average and a .922 save percentage....

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 20, 2008; 5:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (48)
 
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Neuvirth Called Up to Hershey

Four days after being sent to South Carolina of the ECHL, goaltending prospect Michal Neuvirth is back in Hershey. But he's not expected to play and his stay probably won't last long, I'm told. The plan is still for the Caps to loan him out to another team....

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 20, 2008; 4:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
 
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Sloan Will Suit Up in Calgary (Updated)

Coach Bruce Boudreau has shaken things up a bit this morning, particularly among his forward lines. Here's what they're looking like right now: Ovechkin-Fedorov-Clark Laich-Backstrom-Semin Fleischmann-Nylander-Bradley Brashear-Steckel-Fehr/Gordon Meantime, Backstrom, who has one point in five games, has been dropped to the second line. Donald Brashear (hand) looks ready while Tom...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 20, 2008; 9:20 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (111)
 
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Sloan Recalled

Tyler Sloan was recalled after Hershey's loss to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton today, and the defenseman will join the Caps on their road trip to Calgary, Phoenix and Dallas later this week. I'll get Bruce Boudreau's thoughts on the move after tomorrow morning's practice, but it could mean Tom Poti (groin) won't be...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  October 19, 2008; 9:59 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (20)
 
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