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Posted at 12:19 PM ET, 02/ 8/2011

Line change: How will Alexander Semin's return impact the Caps?

By Washington Post Sports Editors

Alexander Semin is set to return after missing 12 games with a groin muscle injury, marking the Caps winger's first game since signing a one-year, $6.7 million contract extension on Jan. 28.

Washington is on a mini-roll after winning two games against its biggest rivals, and Semin's return against the San Jose Sharks could provide even more momentum.

Semin was on a 14-game goal-scoring drought before he took time off to heal, and this morning Coach Bruce Boudreau said it could have been because the winger was playing hurt before he eventually "decided to shut it down."

Will a healthy Alexander Semin get back to his high-scoring ways, bringing some balance to a system that has had a "frustrating" struggle to create offense?

By Washington Post Sports Editors  | February 8, 2011; 12:19 PM ET
Categories:  Alexander Semin  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Alexander Semin to return against Sharks, Mike Green's status uncertain
Next: Bruce Boudreau on Sharks, former roommate Todd McLellan

Comments

As long as he keeps the o-zone penalties late in the game to a minimum he's obviously going to be a welcomed return. Before his injury he was playing a lot better without the puck than I've seen hime in previous seasons.

Posted by: bloodontheice | February 8, 2011 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Matty P and Semin will connect for at least one goal tonight...you heard it here first...

Posted by: allCAPS | February 8, 2011 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Semin's return is insignificant. He will not make it out of the second round of a play off series. The radical changes in the type and intensity of D played in the playoffs guarantees that he'll get hurt. Which I'm sure GMGM already knows, but is praying for the best AGAIN !

Shreck's injury and the Flyers still sitting on an average goalie has the door to the East opening ?????? just Maybe ???

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | February 8, 2011 12:46 PM | Report abuse

His impact will be this...an increase in useless stick infraction penalties in the o-zone.

Posted by: SA-Town | February 8, 2011 12:46 PM | Report abuse

I'm concerned it might mess up some kind of "flow" that we have going now. However, if Semin is 100% healthy and ready to go, I don't see how it will hurt.

Posted by: cunnia05 | February 8, 2011 12:57 PM | Report abuse

LOL you anti-Seminites are ridiculous. As it is constantly mentioned, his penalties have gone down each year fairly consistently. I find it comical that the best you all can come up with is that he is "soft" (or lack of toughness), or takes offensive penalties, doesnt like to speak English to the press...etc etc. Talk about grasping at straws to attempt to say he is not important to this team.

He back checks extremely well (of course now having said this, he'll do the contraty tonight haha). He will make an already awesome PK unit even better. He instantly makes our 2nd line a legit scoring threat (as opposed to now where it comes off more as a checking line) and causes other teams to think differently now since they cant just focus on Ovie's line.

Im thinking he will light the lamp tonight for sure. How many times is the real question.

Now get him a 2C GMGM, quit playing your head games.

Posted by: SeminAllOverTheIce | February 8, 2011 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Oh no, a pure goal scorer coming into our lineup that has had trouble scoring? Armegeddon is upon us. We are doomed!

Posted by: CTCapsPhan | February 8, 2011 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Bury a bunch for us, Sasha-Minor!

Posted by: Rhino40 | February 8, 2011 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Did we get a goalie call? I have both in my fantasy league - I'm a homer - and I gotta decide.

Posted by: saintex | February 8, 2011 1:06 PM | Report abuse

@saintex

Neuvirth was first off the ice and expected to start.

Welcome back to the lineup Semin, now as @SAOTI said, go get him a 2nd line C. And please make the trade soon so you dont get stuck paying a higher price at the deadline.

Posted by: ThePat | February 8, 2011 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Welcome back #28 how about a hat trick? Glad also to see Green sitting out tonight.

Posted by: Redwolf1 | February 8, 2011 1:11 PM | Report abuse

My concern is not whether or not Erskine can defend himself from Talbot, my concern is instead why this hasn't got any mention.

Posted by: bbt12341 | February 8, 2011 11:45 AM | Report abuse


Wasn't trying to insult your hockey IQ, bbt123, just pointing-out that had Erskine known of Talbot's intended slash to the head he would've addressed it. I agree w/ya that something like that sould get some attention here, as no team should feel comfortable that they can take liberties w/our team regardless of who was targeted.

GO CAPS, FILET US SOME SHARKS TONITE!!

Posted by: vermontcaps | February 8, 2011 1:14 PM | Report abuse

He is coming back at a good time. It could take a few games but if he returns to his early season form the Caps will be deadly.

I think it should help the power play a bit as well.

The only worry is he has not had time to figure out this defensive system. I worry he will have the same learning curve the team did.

Posted by: Mike4169 | February 8, 2011 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Well he better come out ready to play hard. Time for the boys to ramp up the intensity, so that means no slacking off, Sasha.

Posted by: McLobo | February 8, 2011 1:58 PM | Report abuse

If Green is out tonight then I wouldnt want Semin back this game.

I think Semin has to re-learn the system and might be a liability as he does that with another fill in on defense at same time.

Semin might be all gung ho to prove he deserves that $6.7 million.....

Posted by: yesisaiditfirst | February 8, 2011 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Semin is as talented as any one when healthy and motivated. How to keep him in both modes is the tough task. I think that he will help if in the right frame of mind. Time to play hard and not take bad penalties in offensive zone. Let's roll #28!!!!! Good for two pints tonight and a plus 2.

Posted by: ballgame21 | February 8, 2011 2:16 PM | Report abuse

A goalie that shuts a team out is almost always going to get next start on any team. I think we have three good ones and should offer one up at deadline. Neuvy is being shown and will help bring a nice return.

Posted by: ballgame21 | February 8, 2011 2:20 PM | Report abuse

As long as Nuevy is in net, I think we’ll walk away with 2 points regardless of whether Semin is on the ice or not.

Posted by: PhilCollins1 | February 8, 2011 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Someone please tell me where the logic is in having Neuvirth and Varlamov performing decently and then optioning them off? I only see them getting better. Stay the course.

And don't get me started on you Semin-haters. Last I checked, he hasn't been getting high sticking penalties and from what I recall, the Playoffs involved some other hockey players and not just Alexander Semin, to get the entire team out of the 2nd round. Hunterforcoach, you do your namesake a disservice.

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | February 8, 2011 2:49 PM | Report abuse

The Lightning are not our rivals. I don't care at all about them. Penguins and Flyers.

Posted by: Sticksboi35 | February 8, 2011 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Sticksboi35, anyone in our division is a rival.

Tampa stinks.

Posted by: PhilCollins1 | February 8, 2011 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Holtby will be in the mix and that is the rational for a trade of one of the other two. They are all very young and we only have one net. I would like to see them all stay but you have to give to get and we still need offensive help at 2C.

Posted by: ballgame21 | February 8, 2011 3:30 PM | Report abuse

@sticks

We had the Bolts down 2-0 in the first round, and then collapsed at home. They won the Cup. We had a great team, and Kolzig still in his prime.

They became a rival that night.

With Yzerman ready to run circles around GMGM, they'll become an even bigger rival. Marty St. Louis is one of the most impressive guys to skate in the NHL in a generation. A great life story. Fear the Bolts: they're coming.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | February 8, 2011 3:39 PM | Report abuse

@ semin all over

Is your boy gonna' continue to net crash now that he has a contract, or is he going to wack D-men in the skates in retaliation.

This guy is a "nut case", but great talent. I love him, and I hate him.

Semin plays like he is capable in the playoffs, and we may HOIST. I would bet against Semin if MONEY was on the line.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | February 8, 2011 3:45 PM | Report abuse

@hunterforcoach

Semin does get injured, but he's not faking the injuries. My own guess is because the refs allow opponents to take liberties with him that would not be allowed against players of a similar skill set.

Posted by: RedLitYogi | February 8, 2011 3:53 PM | Report abuse

@BB

You are nuts. We don't care about 6-1 wins. We are hockey fans, not "Ole Miss faithful". We know a lazy effort when we see one. This is a now huge city with many former players, and serious fans. Many have learned the game after 36 years. I'll hold the "hockey savvy" of the 10,000 most intense fans in that building against the Habs 10,000 any day !!!!! GOOFBALL !!!

When is Ted gonna' stop parading out these guys like BB and GMGM who constantly insult our Hockey I.Q.s ?? This has got to end. Get experienced Cup veterans in here to run this franchise.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | February 8, 2011 3:55 PM | Report abuse

@Redlityogi

And that's why you need guys like DJK ready to come off the bench. Let people know that you can't harm our players.

Would have been nice to see DJK run Fluery after the Cooke knee to knee. It should not be "DJK's first rodeo" every time he touches the ice. Hockey fans in the Central just don't get what is going on with DJK and the Caps. This is the man who dethroned the King: Boog's.

Posted by: Hunterforcoach | February 8, 2011 4:03 PM | Report abuse

and here we go. bashing in full force. He didn't score since November 28th and still 2nd in scoring in Caps.

Posted by: beforeitstoolate | February 8, 2011 4:56 PM | Report abuse

If Semin had a legit 2C with whom he had chemistry I think playoff questions would vanish - but right now we're still not strong enough down the middle.

Damn Kuznetzov can't get here soon enough.

Posted by: Timbo_1 | February 8, 2011 5:48 PM | Report abuse

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