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To return or not to return. The Caps already received a hefty chunk of good news this week when Alexander Semin and Tom Poti came back against the Bruins. It's possible Mike Green and Sergei Fedorov could be the next players to make their way back on to the ice as Tarik discusses in today's hard-copy edition.

*Don't forget that Tarik will be doing a live chat today at 1 p.m. Submit your questions here.

*Ottawa Sun columnist Don Brennan takes a look at Brian Pothier's recovery.

*For those of you who missed it yesterday, Mike Green was on Washington Post Live. Check out the clip from the show.

Ottawa Cliff notes:
*In their latest outing the Senators were shut out 2-0 by Chicago and Cristobal Huet. They were 0-for-6 on the power play, including a two-man advantage that lasted for longer than a minute. Ottawa spent its practice at Kettler yesterday focused on its power play.

*This is a team in a much different situation than the Capitals opponent one everyone saw in Verizon Center earlier this week. Ottawa is 12th in the Eastern Conference at 10-11-5, they've had trouble scoring goals this year -- they're 28th in the league with an average of 2.38 per game -- and they have the 17th ranked power play, a unit that's successful 18.2 percent.

*Remember the last time the Washington faced Ottawa? Mike Fisher had been struggling much like he is now with just one point and a minus-3 rating in the past five games heading into tonight, then against the Capitals on Nov. 4 he scored the game-winning goal in overtime.

In the system:
*The Bears' winning streak ended at 11 games with a 3-0 loss to the San Antonio Rampage last night in the teams' first-ever meeting.

*The video spoils from the Caps 365 crew's trip to Hershey continue to roll in with this feature, which includes clips from the Bears' 10th win in a row (Dec. 6 against Hartford) that tied the franchise record.

By Katie Carrera  |  December 12, 2008; 8:37 AM ET
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Next: Injury Update


No plug for today's chat? For shame.

Posted by: Section117 | December 12, 2008 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Go Caps! Lets have a full 60 Minutes tonight!

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | December 12, 2008 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Sloppy Seconds... In memoery of Sean Avery.....what a tool that guy is....

ROCK the RED tonight CAPS FANS!

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | December 12, 2008 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for reminding me Section117.

Posted by: Katie Carrera | December 12, 2008 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Agreed. This is a very winnable game, and that's what worries me. We do not have a good track record with teams in the bottom half of the league o.o I think we just get sloppy and cocky, and watching Carolina in the first half of last night, we plain and fancy don't have that luxury anymore. Eric Staal is becoming a force to be reckoned with, really fast.

Here's to a full 60-minute effort against Ottawa tonight AND a smoking of Montreal tomorrow night.

Posted by: kittypawz | December 12, 2008 8:50 AM | Report abuse


Eric Staal has been a force to be reckoned with for the past 2 years, he is just off to a slow start this year.

So whats the chant if its Auld in net?

Do we bust into song? Auld Lang Syne?

I'm not as clever as I use to be.

Posted by: JSchon | December 12, 2008 9:02 AM | Report abuse


Simple...somber and depressing.

Posted by: SA-Town | December 12, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

An Auld song loosely paraphrased from my EPL fandom days:

"Oh Alex, you tried and you saved but we still scored,

But you're still in the net poor Alex

We'll shoot them and score them from all over the ice,

and you'll lose this one today oh Alex.

Posted by: Section117 | December 12, 2008 9:38 AM | Report abuse

I say we chant "You Need Emery" (clap, clap, clap-clap-clap).

Posted by: JBrooke4 | December 12, 2008 9:40 AM | Report abuse

@Jschon: I meant this year :)

The problem with Alex-Alex-Alex is that we've got Alex-cubed in our own lineup. That could get really confusing really fast :(

You could always make an Old joke or some kind? 429 isn't really into that kind of thing, sadly.

Posted by: kittypawz | December 12, 2008 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Don't taunt the goalies. They're fragile creatures.

Posted by: _jordan | December 12, 2008 9:47 AM | Report abuse

I have an amusing idea, although it'd take musical acumen to pull off the full effect. It's "Au-Aul-Auld" sung to a simple but creepy minor-key tune, but I don't know how many fanbases would be able to sing a diminished chord in unison.

(If anyone here listens to Emerald Rose "The Pict Song", take the background from it and set it to "Au-Aul-Auld".)

Posted by: kittypawz | December 12, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse


If you can get the whole place chanting that, I'll give you free tickets to a future game.

Posted by: SA-Town | December 12, 2008 10:02 AM | Report abuse

I'm not afraid to say it:
Mike Green is dreamy

Posted by: goskinsgo | December 12, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse



IIRC, the Ottawa fans usually come troll here on game day. Generally, they are pretty polite and take good natured ribbing. But my serious question to them would be: as crazy as Emery was last year, at least who could play. Gerber just sucks, this year and last year. Auld isn't much better. Don't they wish they had Emery back (so long as he's not behind them on the highway), or was his drama just too much to deal with...

Posted by: oldtimehockey | December 12, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

@goskinsgo - I think it's the eyes. Green's got really sexy eyes. :-)

Posted by: irockthered | December 12, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

@SA-Town: Sure, why not. I'll give it a go. If it works, the effect will be creepy as hell. No guarantees, but I'd like to hear it too.

I want to try and start it after the Star-Spangled Banner, when the lights come up before the puck drops. I'll be there a little early tonight and will teach the tune if anyone wants to go in with me on this.

Posted by: kittypawz | December 12, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

@ Jschon: "Auld Lang Syne"...I like it.

@Kittypawz: If you can get meaningful numbers of fans to coherently sing ANYTHING for the first time, then you deserve free season tix for life...for ANY seats you want!

On tonight's opponent...I do feel bad for the Sens, and want to see them to doing better than they are, but as BB says "just not against us".

I feel the same way about TOR, & CGY...usually any team from Canada (even though I'm not Canadian). Unfortunately, I'm not liking MTL much lately because of all that Centenary hoopla. Is it just me or have Habs fans become like Yankees fans: "Our team has a divine right to win; for it to be otherwise would be an affront to God"

Anyway, it is my belief that a true hockey fan understands the difference between a Rival and an Enemy:

A Rival is someone you want very much to beat, but there is also respect.

I would include BUF, BOS, OTT, NYR and PHI in this category, even though the latter two team's fans are often obnoxious.

An Enemy, on the other hand, is someone you just want to smash, crush, disgrace humiliate & OBLITERATE...because you "hate 'em, Hate 'em, HATE 'EM!"

As far as I am concerned, there is only one Enemy...and that Enemy is Pittsburgh!

'nuff said!

Posted by: Rhino40 | December 12, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

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