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Capitals Insider: November 2, 2008 - November 8, 2008

Caps 3, Rangers 1

Coach Bruce Boudreau said he wanted ugly goals - and his players gave them to him tonight. While neither Brooks Laich's goal nor Tom Poti's will be remembered for its beauty, they were just what the Capitals' needed against the Eastern Conference's best team and the league's top netminder. "What...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 8, 2008; 11:39 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (31)
 
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Tonight's Lineup

Shaone Morrisonn, Sergei Fedorov and Chris Clark are out for the Capitals while Brent Johnson will oppose Henrik Lundqvist in goal. Coach Bruce Boudreau said the lineup will be the same as this morning. Forwards Ovechkin-Backstrom-Semin Fleischmann-Nylander-Kozlov Laich-Steckel-Fehr Brashear-Gordon-Bradley Defense Schultz-Green Poti-Sloan Erskine-Jurcina Be sure to check back later tonight...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 8, 2008; 5:53 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (84)
 
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Boudreau: Clark Is Injured (Updated)

Coach Bruce Boudreau shed a little light on the Chris Clark situation, saying, "he has an undisclosed injury at this point. ...It's best that he sits out a game." Boudreau also said the injury is not the goin tendon injury that dogged the captain last season. Clark, who has only...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 8, 2008; 10:49 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (44)
 
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Morning Skate Update

Okay, so you've probably already seen that Tyler Sloan has been recalled. Well, neither Shaone Morrisonn nor Sergei Fedorov are on the ice, so that explains that. But there's another mystery (to me at least). Chris Clark is wearing an orange jersey and is not assigned to a line. In...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 8, 2008; 10:10 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
 
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Sloan Recalled

With defenseman Shaone Morrisonn suffering from a groin pull, the Caps have recalled Tyler Sloan from minor-league Hershey. I'll have more from the morning skate a little later....

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 8, 2008; 8:55 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
 
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Eminger To Tampa Bay

And just in time for Monday's game against the Lightning, which now features yet another former Cap returning to Washington. From TSN.ca: The Philadelphia Flyers have acquired defenceman Matt Carle and the San Jose Sharks' third round pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft from the Tampa Bay Lightning in...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 7, 2008; 7:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (40)
 
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Forecasting Ovechkin's Goal Total

With Alex Ovechkin in the midst of the longest goal drought of his career (eight games), I figured this would be as good a time as ever to try out the Insider's first poll. poll by twiigs.com...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 7, 2008; 2:32 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (40)
 
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Morrisonn, Fedorov Listed as Day-to-Day (Updated)

Because teams aren't required to divulge much about injuries under the NHL's new guidelines, details are hard to come by in regard to Shaone Morrisonn and Sergei Fedorov. Neither player participated in today's informal optional practice, and a team official would only say that both are day-to-day. We know Morrisonn...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 7, 2008; 11:03 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (65)
 
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Morning Reading List

The new All-Russian line of Alex Ovechkin, Sergei Fedorov and Alexander Semin got the Caps offense going yesterday recording all of the team's three goals (and the three primary assists on them) in Washington's 3-2 come-from-behind win over Carolina. But the victory at Verizon Center came with a price as...

By Katie Carrera  |  November 7, 2008; 9:37 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (36)
 
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Post-Game Thoughts

Unfortunately, there wasn't a whole lot of new information regarding the injuries to Shaone Morrisonn and Sergei Fedorov. It was announced that Morrisonn suffered a groin injury, but it's unclear what happened to Fedorov. If both can't play Saturday, obviously, the team will have to call up a defenseman. I...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 6, 2008; 11:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (38)
 
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Fedorov Hurt, Too

Veteran center Sergei Fedorov left the game with about 14 minutes to go. Details on the injury were scarce, but GM George McPhee said a few moments ago that he doesn't believe its all that serious. It's believed to be a "lower body" injury. Fedorov, of course, was the second...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 6, 2008; 10:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (23)
 
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Morrisonn Injured

Defenseman Shaone Morrisonn has suffered a groin pull, I'm told. He did not play in the second period and isn't expected to return. I'll have more on his status after the game....

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 6, 2008; 8:52 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
 
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Tonight's Lineup

Brent Johnson (1-1-2, 2.47 GAA, .914 Sv%) will start in goal for the Caps and he's expected to oppose Cam Ward (4-2-2, 2.58 GAA, .922 Sv%). Coach Bruce Boudreau said moments ago that there aren't any changes to the lineup, so it should look like this: Forwards Ovechkin-Fedorov-Semin Laich-Backstrom-Kozlov Fleischmann-Nylander-Clark...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 6, 2008; 5:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (35)
 
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Therrien Responds to Semin's Comments

Pens Coach Michel Therrien, never one to bite his toungue, responded earlier today to Alexander Semin's controversial comments about Sidney Crosby: From the Penguins' web site (via Kukla's Korner): "Is he talking about the youngest guy to get 100 points in the history of the National Hockey League? Is he...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 6, 2008; 3:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
 
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All Russian Top Line (Updated)

With the Caps struggling to find their groove offensively -- they've scored one goal or fewer in four of the past six games -- Coach Bruce Boudreau shuffled his lines this morning in an effort to get things going. The biggest change came at the top: Alex Ovechkin, Sergei Fedorov...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 6, 2008; 10:18 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (111)
 
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Morning Reading List

Tarik has more about Coach Bruce Boudreau's decision to start Brent Johnson in goal tonight against the Carolina Huricanes at Verizon Center in the hard-copy edition. Here are cliff notes on the Hurricanes to get you ready for tonight's game. *Winners in three of their past four contests, the Southeast...

By Katie Carrera  |  November 6, 2008; 8:59 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
 
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Boudreau: Johnson Earns Start Against 'Canes

This morning's practice was canceled, but Coach Bruce Boudreau talked to the beat writers on the phone a few minutes ago. The topic du jour - you guessed it - was the goalie situation. There is no controversy, according to Boudreau. But Johnson will make his second straight start tomorrow...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 5, 2008; 11:23 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (85)
 
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Morning Reading List

The Caps were happier with their all around effort in last night's 2-1 overtime loss to the Senators, but Coach Bruce Boudreau also said they "...were half a step behind all the time there," in the extra session. And as you can read in Tarik's story for the hard-copy edition,...

By Katie Carrera  |  November 5, 2008; 8:29 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (29)
 
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Sens 2, Caps 1 (OT)

I've got a 6 a.m. flight out of Ottawa, so I'm going to be brief tonight. As I wrote in my gamer, I thought the intensity level was higher than Saturday's loss in Buffalo. The effort was better. And so was the goaltending. But it wasn't enough to overcome a...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 4, 2008; 11:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (22)
 
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Trio of Caps on All Star Ballot

Alex Ovechkin, Mike Green and Alexander Semin will represent the Caps on the Eastern Conference All Star ballot. Read the full release here. This is Ovechkin's third time on the ballot, while Green and Semin are on it for the first time in their careers. Voting opens on Nov. 12...

By Katie Carrera  |  November 4, 2008; 2:38 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (121)
 
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Boudreau Shuffles Lines and Pairings

In the wake of Saturday's 5-0 loss in Buffalo, Coach Bruce Boudreau unveiled a new-look Capitals' lineup at the morning skate here at Scotiabank Place today. Alex Ovechkin is indeed back in the lineup and should be ready to go tonight against Dany Heatley and the Sens. Brent Johnson is...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 4, 2008; 12:41 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (41)
 
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Live All-Star Ballot Results

I know we're all tired of elections, voting and polls, but at least this one's hockey related. When the NHL opens up balloting on Nov. 12 for this year's All Star game in Montreal on Jan. 25, fans will be able able to look at real-time results of the voting....

By Katie Carrera  |  November 4, 2008; 11:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
 
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Morning Reading List

Alex Ovechkin returned to the ice with his teammates for the first time yesterday after a week-long trip to Russia to visit his ill grandfather. Read more about the boost his presence alone gives the Caps in Tarik's story for the hard-copy edition. *While the Capitals are anxious to erase...

By Katie Carrera  |  November 4, 2008; 9:02 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (26)
 
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Semin Named First Star In October

Alexander Semin, who scored 16 points to lead the NHL in October, was named first star of the month. He also had a plus/minus rating of plus-7 and matched Dale Hunter for the most points by a Capital in the first nine games of a season. (Hunter had a goal...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 3, 2008; 4:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (36)
 
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Ovechkin: 'It helped me a lot'

Some post-practice news, notes and quotes to get you through the rest of the day: *Alex Ovechkin is back as I mentioned in a previous post. And so is his infectious enthusiasm. One day after the Caps were put through a brutal practice, and two days after they suffered their...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 3, 2008; 12:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (41)
 
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Ovechkin, Morrisonn Skating, Erskine Out (Updated)

Alex Ovechkin is indeed back in town and on the ice for practice. Injured defenseman Shaone Morrisonn is also skating, but John Erskine (calf) is not, so Sergei Fedorov remains on the blue line. Erskine survived yesterday's punishing practice, but apparently he wasn't good enough to go today. He missed...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 3, 2008; 10:25 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (41)
 
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Morning Reading List

After what can only be described as an ugly 5-0 loss to Buffalo Saturday, the Caps lost their scheduled day off yesterday, and Tarik wrote about the most grueling practice of Coach Bruce Boudreau's tenure for today's hard-copy edition. *Alex Ovechkin has returned from Russia, but as many of you...

By Katie Carrera  |  November 3, 2008; 9:45 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
 
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Ovechkin Back In Town

Alex Ovechkin has returned from Russia and is back in the Washington area, according to a text message I just received from his business manager, Konstantin Selinevich. I don't have any other details, but I imagine that I'll get an update at tomorrow's practice....

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 2, 2008; 8:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
 
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Boudreau: 'This Isn't a Country Club'

All morning, Bruce Boudreau stalked around Kettler Capitals Iceplex with a scowl on his face. And when he met with reporters later, he didn't mince his words. He was angry. About as angry as he's been since becoming head coach of the Caps last November. "If they're not going to...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 2, 2008; 1:46 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (46)
 
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Punishing Practice For Caps (Update)

As you might have expected, Coach Bruce Boudreau is putting his players through a tough practice this morning after their weak effort in a 5-0 loss in Buffalo. Today was supposed to be a day off. It's anything but. After about 10 minutes or so of modified suicides, Boudreau's got...

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 2, 2008; 11:24 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
 
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Neuvirth Returning to U.S.

As some of you may have seen late last night, Tim Leone at The Patriot News reported that Michal Neuvirth's contract has fallen through and that he'll be returning to the United States. He's scheduled to return to South Carolina and the ECHL. Tarik's en route to this morning's practice...

By Katie Carrera  |  November 2, 2008; 10:43 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
 
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