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Morning Reading List

Tom Boswell may not be known for the amount of time he spends near hockey rinks, but after the Capitals displayed one of their most lackluster performances of the season Tuesday night he was impressed by the standard the team held itself to.

*Although Coach Bruce Boudreau was optimistic earlier in the week that the Caps might get one of their injured players back for tonight's game against the Islanders, but they may not be that lucky.

Islanders Cliff notes:
*The Islanders have split their past six games, but have had five days off since their most recent game -- a 4-2 win over Ottawa. They will likely start Joey MacDonald in net opposite Brent Johnson. While MacDonald has a 10-9 record on the season he's had the unenviable task of stepping in after Rick DiPietro's latest injury. In 14 November starts, MacDonald, who faces the Caps for the first time tonight, was 8-5 with a .916 save percentage and and 2.64 GAA.

*New York added another player to its injury list as defenseman Radek Martinek aggravated his injured right shoulder when collided with a teammate in practice yesterday. It's unclear if he'll play tonight at Verizon Center. Forwards Kyle Okposo (right hand/wrist), Nate Thompson (foot) and Mike Comrie (right hip) are still out for the Islanders.

*Center Mike Sillinger was recalled from a conditioning stint in Bridgeport earlier this week and he's expected to play in his first game for the Islanders since Feb. 5 tonight. In 34 career games against the Caps, Sillinger has 17 points and a minus-11 rating.

*The Capitals won't have to worry about him tonight, but goaltender Rick DiPietro skated for the second day since undergoing knee surgery in late October.

*The Sean Avery saga continues as he and Dallas co-general manager Brett Hull are set to meet with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman at noon today. The forward sent out an apology in a press release yesterday.

Here's the latest round of updates and opinions on Avery, the league's response and what could happen next: ESPN's Scott Burnside and Damien Cox along with TSN's Bob McKenzie.

In the system:
*As was mentioned at the end of Tarik's notebook, Stefan Della Rovere was one of 38 players selected to compete for the 22 spots on Canada's team for the world junior hockey championships, which begins on Dec. 26 in Ottawa.

*Defenseman John Carlson was left off the United States roster. The United States coaches opted to go with older players (17 of the 22 on the roster are at least 19 years old) who had a large amount of international experience.

*Braden Holtby made 23 saves in Saskatoon's 4-3 win over Kamloops Tuesday when the teams honored former WHL goaltender Michael Maniago, 20, who died after a car accident Saturday morning. For those who enjoyed the StarPhoenix's journal of the Blades roadtrip, here's Part III.

*Hershey reassigned Patrick Wellar to Reading.

By Katie Carrera  |  December 4, 2008; 8:26 AM ET
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Next: Aucoin Recalled


Well, knock on wood, at least we haven't had our guys injuring (or re-injuring) each other in practice.

Posted by: _Mark | December 4, 2008 8:31 AM | Report abuse

ahhh Mark - we still don't know when Clark got injured do we?

Posted by: goskinsgo | December 4, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Im not a salary cap specialist, but is it possible to put Semin on LTIR retroactively and free up cap space? Hes a great talent but seems injury prone and I have to wonder if some of it is being tough enough to play when nicked. Starting to get the feeling hes our Gaborick!

Posted by: thd1 | December 4, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Looks like Briere is having fun, too. Out again for 4 to 5 more weeks. Aggravated his groin injury in his first game back Tuesday night against the Bugs. The re-injury thing is tough. I don't like the little runt, but I don't wish injury on anyone. I just hope that when our guys do make it back, they are fully recovered and don't go through the same things.

Posted by: _Mark | December 4, 2008 8:37 AM | Report abuse

If they put a player on LTIR, the cap relief, if applicable, starts at that time. The time the player must miss is retroactive to the time the injury was reported.

Posted by: _Mark | December 4, 2008 8:40 AM | Report abuse

You are correct. We do not know when he was injured. As it apparently was a problem for a while and just worsened to the point that he had to stop, he may not even know for sure when it happened

Posted by: _Mark | December 4, 2008 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Looks like Briere is having fun, too. Out again for 4 to 5 more weeks. Aggravated his groin injury in his first game back Tuesday night against the Bugs.

Posted by: _Mark | December 4, 2008 8:37 AM
Well at least he didn't milk his injury like the Caps do, so that's admirable on his part.

Posted by: Section117 | December 4, 2008 8:47 AM | Report abuse

I saw the 4 to 5 weeks about Briere. Sakic also out for six weeks. Why do some teams give more definitive injury timelines than others? I wonder if we had just said Semin out with whatever injury for 3 - 4 weeks if things would have been different? This day-to-day stuff seems to be adding to the frustration for the player, frustration for the fans when the players don't return, rampant speculation about the intestinal fortitude of the players as day-to-day becomes week to week, etc. I realize that initially maybe the team thought Semin and Green would be able to return sooner. However, once that was not realistic it might have been more beneficial to just say at least that they were week-to-week.

Posted by: Kim-3 | December 4, 2008 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps it is the injury itself. Schultz' time frame was more specific, but so was the injury. Maybe Briere's was better defined because he just came back from the injury and they expect it to be that same amount of time again.

Posted by: _Mark | December 4, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse


LTIR requires both 10 games and 24 days (I think) missed. The Caps can place Semin on LTIR retroactively for the days and games that he has missed but there is no retroactive cap consideration; the players are paid by the day and Semin has already been paid for those days. In other words, unless the Caps think he is going to be out another 10 games and 24 days, there is really no salary cap benefit at this point to putting him on LTIR. That time has long since past.

Posted by: ChrisAm | December 4, 2008 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Caps recall Aucoin

Posted by: thd1 | December 4, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Read Tarik's article on WaPo today. Apparently Semin reinjured himself in Tuesday's practice. Damn it.

Posted by: DannyBoy1975 | December 4, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse


its virtually impossible to pinpoint the "start" date of a stress fracture. It is, by nature, a stress induced injury that gets worse over time. I've had several stress fractures, including one in my forearm like Clark, and every time they strated off as a little sore and progressively got worse (some quicker than others). Because a stress fracture is not a tramuatic injury, sometimes its even hard to remember when it started hurting! And because a stress fracture frequently does not swell or show any other outward signs of injury until the actual fracture occurs, athletes are notorious for trying to "pushing through" the pain, which is a good recipe for the bone to eventually fracture.

Posted by: RedBirdie | December 4, 2008 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Apparently Semin has suffered a setback in regards to getting a marque contract.

I hate to say it, but this extended injury could shave a few million off his worth.

Posted by: SA-Town | December 4, 2008 9:58 AM | Report abuse

S#&T. That's just great...

Read Tarik's article on WaPo today. Apparently Semin reinjured himself in Tuesday's practice. Damn it.

Posted by: DannyBoy1975 | December 4, 2008 9:51 AM

Posted by: vkova10 | December 4, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Can we trade for help or something? Can we panic yet?

Posted by: _jordan | December 4, 2008 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Apparently Semin reinjured himself in Tuesday's practice. Damn it.

Posted by: DannyBoy1975 | December 4, 2008 9:51 AM
I find it hilarious that barely a week ago you were essentially saying he was goldbricking and taking his sweet time in coming back, and now you are mad that he suffered a setback while rehabbing.

It's slightly, how you say, "ironic."

Posted by: Section117 | December 4, 2008 10:17 AM | Report abuse

I'd rather have the hard-working call-ups holding down the fort for injured (and hopefully soon-to-return) stars than that crybaby Jagr, any day of the week.

On anther note, the other day I went with my son into a trading card store so that he could play Magic The Gathering or somesuch.

There were 9 different sets of Hockey trading cards offered for sale there. One of these featured obscure minor leaguers; another was Legends of the NHL, and a third featured players from the European Leagues.

Of the remaining 6 sets offered for sale, all--that's right ALL of them!--featured either Evgeni Malkin or Sidney Crosby on the wrapper. I was incensed. Irate. Very annoyed.

As any Caps fan knows, there are many rivals, but only one Enemy...and that Enemy is Pittsburgh.

I had to voice my outrage at that point, saying to all who would listen:

"Who won the Art Ross Trophy last year?
Not Evgeni Malkin.

Who won the Rocket Richard Trophy?
Not Sidney Crosby.

WHO won the Lester B.Pearson Trophy?

WHO won the Hart Trophy?

How about a little respect here?!?!"

IMHO, the real reason Crosby is marketed so heavily by the League is becauthe he'th THO HANTHOME. I say unto them: ugly is as ugly does.

As for the Cup: It will be ours. Oh, yes, it will be ours. Just keep the faith.

Posted by: Rhino40 | December 4, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Section117 is highly annoying. Trade him!

Posted by: cstanton1 | December 4, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, this "perspective" thing I possess is a locker room cancer.

Posted by: Section117 | December 4, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse

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