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Boudreau: Varlamov set to start in Ottawa

With the pressure of keeping the winning streak alive no longer a concern, Coach Bruce Boudreau said he'll tap Semyon Varlamov to start in goal tonight as two of the NHL's hottest teams meet at Scotiabank Place.

"I'm looking to see him stop the puck," Boudreau deadpanned when asked about his expectations for the rookie goalie, who has not made an NHL start since Dec. 7 because of groin muscle and knee injuries.

"He says he's ready to play," the coach added. "We'll see. We're playing arguably the best team in the league right now other than maybe us. So why not throw him into the fire and see what he can do?"

Varlamov will be backed up by Jose Theodore and will oppose Brian Elliott, who has won 10 of 11 games. Theodore, Boudreau said, will start against St. Louis on Saturday.

Michal Neuvirth, meantime, had to miss tonight's game, Boudreau said, because he needed to miss one more Caps' contest in order to be eligible to suit up in Hershey during the Olympic break.

I'll have more in a bit.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  February 11, 2010; 12:24 PM ET
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Next: Banged up Caps expected to recall two


Good to see varly back!

Go Caps!

Posted by: wowkanut | February 11, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I'm excited to see Varly.

Posted by: elicea | February 11, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

can't really trust on BB as far as which goalie will start... said yesterday Varly wouldn't start in the first 2 games of the trip.

he says Theo will start on saturday now but what if Varly gets a shutout tonight?? LOL

Posted by: joek443 | February 11, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Tairk on twitter said both Erskine and Poti are hurting. Wonder if Carlson or Alzner get recalled... or maybe both?

Posted by: elicea | February 11, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

I posted right after the game last night that Varly would start on grounds streak was over and perfect time to change the pace. BB is getting predictable in some ways, especially with superstitions and all.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 11, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Varly...the rest of the way (unless injured)

Posted by: SoaringCaps | February 11, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

New Red Rocka Recap at:

Posted by: meagle | February 11, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Donald Brashear just got put on waivers by the NY Rangers.

Posted by: capsfan01 | February 11, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

I wonder how Hal Gill feels today..he blocked 11 shots, and got knocked into Ontario last night by Ovie...

Posted by: SA-Town | February 11, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse


Someone on Japers has posted that Alzner and Bourque are missing in action at Hershey. So, does that mean a callup has happened for those two guys?

Posted by: CapsFan75 | February 11, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Alzner up will be good with Poti and Erskine nicked. Bourque -- for who? Isn't he a RW?

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS1 | February 11, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

It'd be interesting to see Bourque in the line-up

Posted by: elicea | February 11, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Bourque could go in for Morrison. BMo has definitely hit a wall. Could be, in hindsight, he wasn't ready for this much of a grind and should have been rested say one game every 8 or 10.

The Olympic break will help greatly with BMo getting rest and if Poti's groin has acted up again. We'll next see Poti I guess March 3rd vs Sabres.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 11, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

maybe Bourque for Laing? That would seem odd to me.

Posted by: zyvo23 | February 11, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Also, once back from break, Aucoin can be called up to stay (or no fears if they demote that anyone would claim). I am thinking he might give you more production at center than some others have lately.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 11, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if they are going to give Borque a spin on the third line while Chimera is out? Although, wouldn't he have to clear waivers again to be sent back down?

Posted by: cainoo7x | February 11, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Steckel can play 3rd line center with Bradley and Fehr and Gordo can center the 4th line with then Laing and Bourque. For one game, that's no big deal.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 11, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Interesting point on BMo, but I would've thought if they were looking for a C, they'd go back to Perrault.

Posted by: zyvo23 | February 11, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Bourque maybe too small for today's NHL- unless he has the St Louis or Gionta skill - which he doesn't.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | February 11, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

the guy who looked really good in his first game, against the Avs I think was Kyle Wilson... I'd like to see that guy get another shot with the big team

Posted by: joek443 | February 11, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Well it looks as though our D corps is a bit sore...glad they all have a big vacation coming up to heal!

Posted by: capscoach | February 11, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Kyle Wilson had a great game vs Avs. Goal and assist, was it?

Bourque is OK for one game though. They just need to get through tonight and Saturday and then a few things could be different come March.

Posted by: tominfl1 | February 11, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Great to see Varly back in action. Perhaps now that Theo has picked up his game lately that might generate some interest in him before the trade deadline.

I'm not really sure why people are all over BMo. I think he's done fine. You just can expect him to put up the same numbers he did when he played on the 2nd line with Semin and Fleischmann. With all due respect to Fehr and Chimera that is a huge drop-off in skill level on the wings for him. I think he's doing what he's been asked to do and is professional about even though I'm sure he doesn't like being demoted to the 3rd line. IMO, moving Fleischmann to C the 2nd line and dropping BMo to 3rd has been key to our huge success lately. We now have 3 dangerous scoring lines which is 2 more than most teams can say. Hence scoring tons of goals and winning 14 straight.

Posted by: ranndino | February 11, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Varly isn't a rookie

Posted by: LZ85 | February 11, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

With the Senators up 5-4 I'm thinking Varly should have had a second game at Hershey. But Coach said it about throwing him into the fire against the only team nearly as hot as the Caps. It seems only Fehr. With Theo and Neuvy playing so well during the streak, if Varly is going to insinuate himself into the lineup it shouldn't be a stat padding game (not like he needs it).

Posted by: chavez66 | February 11, 2010 9:11 PM | Report abuse

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