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Morrisonn Will Be a Game-Time Decision

Defenseman Shaone Morrisonn practiced for the first time since suffering a groin muscle pull last week and said afterward that he's close to returning to the lineup. If not tomorrow night against the Devils, it's possible he'll get back into the lineup in New Jersey on Saturday.

Just in case, though, the Caps have not returned Tyler Sloan to Hershey just yet.

"It's a possibility, but it depends on how it feels tomorrow," Morrisonn said. "It's getting better every day."

Morrisonn said he suffered the injury when he pivoted from front to backward skating in the first period of the Hurricanes game last Thursday at Verizon Center.

"I was surprised ...bad ice," he said before softening his tone a bit. "I don't know, I don't think know how it was caused. ...Bad luck."

He definitely wouldn't be the first Cap to say he sloppy ice at VC has contributed to an injury.

A few other notes from today's light practice:

*Boudreau did not assign his forwards to lines, but he did hint that he doesn't plan on breaking up the Alex Ovechkin-Nicklas Backstrom-Alexander Semin combo that was so dominant last night in Carolina.

*Ovechkin did not practice today, but he will face the Devils. Asked about his absence, Boudreau said: "You can be assured that he'll play a whole lot this weekend."

*Boudreau also said that Fedorov, out with an undisclosed injury, could take the morning skate tomorrow, but probably isn't ready to return.

*As for the Alexander Semin, he's not only leading the league in points (27) and goals (13), he's also tops in plus-minus (17). That after finishing last season minus-18.

By the way, Ovechkin ranks second (plus-12) and Mike Green is fourth (plus-10).

"It's a combination of two things," Boudreau said of Semin's plus-minus. "His line has got the puck all the time so [its] not getting scored on. And he is playing better. That's why he's playing in the last minute of a game. He's accomplishing that. That's a sign of maturity on his part."

"Plus-17 is a pretty incredible number after only 15 games."

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 13, 2008; 12:28 PM ET
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Next: Caps Sign Prospect Carlson


Any chance to sit Juice for a game or two and keep Sloan up? Juice is looking real "tired"

Posted by: Steve_R | November 13, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm...put Mo on the bench (or Juice) and keep Sloan up.

Posted by: keeef | November 13, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Tarik -
Any more word on the goalie situation and Johnny's injury? Is there any talk of a call up?

Posted by: Roose | November 13, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

An incredible number indeed! Can't wait for the game tomorrow night!

I haven't been paying attention to NJ much, and even less since hearing that Brodeur got hurt. How are the Devs doing without him?

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | November 13, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

It's good to see the Caps up there. Usually, it was teams like Detroit that had all the players up there. It's nice to see the Caps lead that category.

Posted by: _828 | November 13, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

From the last post:

My pet peeve is over the past ten years the seats at the Phone Booth have been shrinking. The last game i went to, I stood up to cheer a goal, and my drink almost spilled!

(for the Filly fans in the peanut gallery trying to read this, that was actually a joke. See, the seats haven't shrunk. My tooshie has gotten enourmous over the past few years.)

It's not as funny when I have to explain it

Posted by: Leeguru | November 13, 2008 12:58 PM

Posted by: Leeguru | November 13, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse


I think the Devils have only won one game since he went down... maybe 1-5 or something like that. That win was a shootout against the tough Tampa team.

Posted by: _828 | November 13, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Lee wrote: My pet peeve is over the past ten years the seats at the Phone Booth have been shrinking. The last game i went to, I stood up to cheer a goal, and my drink almost spilled!

I suggest you hit the track or the gym because those might not be the seats shrinking.

Posted by: _828 | November 13, 2008 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Like I said, not as funny if I have to explain it....

Posted by: Leeguru | November 13, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Lee, I didn't read your bottom part about your bottom... haha, nice joke... I was trying to make a joke too. I'll go back to Philly.

Posted by: _828 | November 13, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Lee, the entire spectrum of wisea@@ comments have been running through my head, but since you know where I live I've been showing heroic restraint.

Posted by: Steve_R | November 13, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

What in the world do the Caps see in Juracina. He makes way too many bad play and penalties. He is the worst liability on the team.

Posted by: rock-o | November 13, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

828, I figured it was a mind fart. Please don't go to Filly or Upper NW maryland (that's Pitsburg)

Steve, just don't let your wife get you started or else my email will be flooded.

Posted by: Leeguru | November 13, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I'll try to stay away from Upper North Philly as well (that's Buffalo).

Posted by: _828 | November 13, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse


I believe it is trying to use patience to let some of the younger guys (Alzner, Godfrey, etc) to develop in Hershey. This wasn't the season the Caps had circled to win the Cup. That's why Varlimov and Nuevirth aren't here either. Juice's days are numbered, as are the Sexy Lumberjack, Kozlov, and any number of expendables.

Posted by: Leeguru | November 13, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Pittsburgh could also be called East Cleveland. They love that.

Posted by: Leeguru | November 13, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Easy on the northwest Maryland comments....There are some of us who live up here that love Caps hockey!!!

Posted by: PhilR | November 13, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Bad ice again?

Posted by: larryn703 | November 13, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

As usual, I'll be sticking up a little for Juice - although he had a horrendous game last night.

If you look at the Corsi ratings that Japer's Rink pumps out, you'll see that Mo and Schultz are below Juice's rating.

I feel that Mo's been the worst behind the blue this season, somehow the rating thinks it's Schultz.

Posted by: keeef | November 13, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

If Sloan stops with the bad passes there won't be much to complain about. erskine and juice have improved since arriving. Juice is improving and has to learn not to finish all his checks. the guys been showing some strength don't you think?

I really want Johnson to keep getting his chance. he's been lucky and been making that luck. his face while he watched from the sideline was painful to see. I'd like to see that poll.

Posted by: oo7 | November 13, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

"Morrisonn said he suffered the injury when he pivoted from front to backward skating in the first period of the Hurricanes game last Thursday at Verizon Center.

"I was surprised ...bad ice," he said before softening his tone a bit.
I thought we were done with the same tired comments on the blogs...

Posted by: Section117 | November 13, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

oh and this ice situation is out of control. I'd rather pay leonsis 5 a game televised from kettler than see the pathetic ice at verizon take out our team. did we lose Feds to bad ice, too? at 4 million per? how long will that go on, Ted? are there complaints about the hardwood?

Posted by: oo7 | November 13, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

I'm no fan of Jurcina, but the penalty he got for 'roughing' Eric Staal was complete BS.

My 10-month-old girl is more of a man than Staal. First he misses two empty nets. Then he decides to run the goalie. Then he gets a gentle reminder from Jurcina that, 'Hey, there's a lot of grown men playing this game. If your vag--a hurts today, that's your problem.' And then he drops like he'd been shot by a sniper up in section 216. Time to gwow up wittle one..


Posted by: TheRealOneal | November 13, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

as has been noted here many times, ted does not control the verizon center. i'm sure he has pushed abe and his crew to pay more attention to the ice, but it does not seemed to have gotten any better. as tarik has mentioned many times before, its very warm in vc compared to other (and southern) arenas. part of the problem is that the vc is a heavily used building. that makes it difficult to maintain the appropriate temps to keep good ice. that said, its not the only mult use building in the league. others have figured it out, not sure why the vc cant/wont.

at some point i should think that ted's lease should have some provision for providing a safe environment for players, spectators, etc. to the extent the vc is not, perhaps he can claim breach of contract. i'm not a lawyer but it sounds good to me. mark learner is a part owner of the caps and he seems like someone who can exploit the finer points of any lease...put him on the case.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | November 13, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Juice needs to sit. Maybe forever.

Posted by: Vic_Mackey | November 13, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I know ted doesn't control VC, but in the end it seems you agree that something should be done. when your ice has wet spots and you get shafted come playoff time for horse shows and the circus, and your multimillion dollar stars are injured by the conditions, seems like something should be done, or explained.

Posted by: oo7 | November 13, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

The Devils have been in a tailspin since Marti went down. They have lost 3 in a row, 3 out of their last 5, and have only won 2 of their last nine, including two OT loses. Their wins were over the Thrashers (spanked them 6-1 and OT over Tampa 3-4). They are ripe for the picking right now. I hope the Caps can continue their winning streak for at least two more games.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS | November 13, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I hope Josie can put together a few games as good as the 2 periods in the Tarheel state. It would be great to see him turn around a bad start for a change. I do hope the phone booth is rockin tomorrow, we need horn guy in good form. We get almost as many Devils fans here as they do at home, so I love to send them away VERY quiet. Back to my OV jersey for tomorrows game, I guess the Red Russian jersey since it seems to be the best luck.

Posted by: majiksea | November 13, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

i hear you. i'm sure ted has made his feelings known. i know he's sick of talking about it cause he's mentioned that in his blog. i'm sure if the shoe was on the other foot and ted rolled out some super slippery hardwoods, he hear about it from the old man.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | November 13, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

This whole the-caps-have-no-rights-when-it-comes-to-the-verizon-center thing is getting very very old. We are BY FAR the best team AND show that the phone booth houses. It's time this disastrous building lease reflected that! And to make matters worse, you can't buy club level tickets w/out also buying Wiz club tix? Travesty.

Posted by: MTB7 | November 13, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse


Just how dumb are you? Ted L owns a MINORITY interest in the VC and the Buzzards NBA team. He also owns the rights to buy both the VC and the Buzzards when Abe P dies or sells. It is not a lease issue, it is an ownership issue and unless you can arrange for Abe P to check out sometime soon, there is no easy solution.

Posted by: majiksea | November 13, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I'd be really curious to see what the bottom lines look like for an average Wizards game versus an average Caps game. Which one makes the VC more money?

Posted by: kittypawz | November 13, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Guys Ted can't take his toys and go home. It is a partnership issue and if you have been paying attention the last few years you know Abe P does not play nice with others. He sold Ted the Caps and the Mistakes, he also sold him a minority share of the VC and Buzzards, but part of the agreement is that the Caps and Mistakes play at the VC. Abe controls and makes money from the consessions and the club seats. Because Abe P owns and controls the VC he keeps the temp at a level he feels is comfy for his fans, basketball, concerts, etc and he has refused to invest in new equipment like dehumidifyers. No Ted could on his own by dehumidifyers and install them, but the he would have to pay for them again when he bought the building, because it would be worth more with new equipment. So chill, we've been there for 10 years with the same ice, no disasters or pay for a hit on Abe or keep up the incessant whining (but it is not attractive).

Posted by: majiksea | November 13, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

To disrespect Abe is to show ignorance about sports in the nations capital.

Posted by: x1232 | November 13, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

New poll proposal!

If the players had to choose between one of the following, which do you think would it be:

- Bad ice

- Being asked after every game if they think there's a chance they might score next game.

Posted by: BandwagonCheck | November 13, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

The ice was horrible at the old Cap Center as well. Abe was the only owner then and he did nothing to improve the situation. I know Abe is responsible for too many good things about Washington area sports to even begin listing them, but the bad ice and constant second citizen treatment of the Capitals will have to go down as failures on his resume (also, do you all think he minds that his B-Ball team is the east coast version of the Clippers?).

Posted by: JustAnObservation | November 13, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Abe disrespects himself on this!

I have no idea if that even makes sense, I just remember it from Knocked Up or Superbad or something...

Posted by: austinsteve | November 13, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

I thought that was a quote from Rocky 4

Posted by: Leeguru | November 13, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

A couple comments/observations
I like the nickname of SOB Line for Semin,Ovie,Backs

Is the Booth using the "Rite Ice" that is used in Dallas and a couple of the other southern areans?? Can we turn thermostat down on game days? I went to the games in Atlanta (last March) and in Dallas this year, and the Areans are cold inside, more so Atlanta then Dallas.
The Wiz are so Bad maybe ABE will jump on the "bandwagon".

We need to finish out this week strong , before we go on the road next week! N.J. another confrence foe we will be battleing for points in the end.......more 4 pointers!

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | November 13, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Well that sounds a lot like superbad to me

Posted by: austinsteve | November 13, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

@828- haha...hating on the lucky Sombrero eh? The caps are now 17-2-2 in regular games the Sombrero attends with me. Yes I have taken to referring to the Sombrero as its own special entity. I think its earned the respect.

regarding pet peeves, I can't stand leaners either. By far the most annoying thing. I can tune out a drunk person, or a guy with an annoying voice etc, but I can't see through a leaner. I might even print out public service announcements and pass them out to people in front of me before tomorrow's game.

Posted by: SombreroGuy | November 13, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

I have been really quiet so far but I'm over watching our "D" partially clear the puck and give up weak passes in our defensive zone. We do not have any consistency and I mean "ANY". There is no cup run for a team with irresponsible "D" night in and night out. Sloan is the only one with an excuse right now, the rest of them have none in my book. They need to be more responsible and as far as Juice and Erskine go, they look like Joe Reekie at the end of his career - they get walked around because they don't have good speed, they miscue regularly and act as if they get flustered/bothered easily under pressure. I'm done with both of them! They suck!! And to boot, those two guys have strength and height, there is absolutely no excuse for not finishing every "check" and "playing smart". They should be awesome and they are not - don't understand it?

It's a good thing STAAL wasn't on the top of his game last night because honestly if we play the RED WINGS, PITTSBURGH, PHILLY,
OR ANYONE ELSE FOR THAT MATTER IN THE BEST OF SEVEN SERIES, we all know that those misses are goals due to poor miscues by our "D". I'm just saying!

On a lighter note - Flash is better still want more goals from him (has a lot of chances that don't go for him!) - Bradley is, I'm not sure - Laich is much better earlier this season. Gordon is ??? Thought JSchon might be able to help me find my way?????

Posted by: greenie19 | November 13, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Boston Globe reporting that Nylander might be going to the Blackhawks? Any word from the inside?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | November 13, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Does the Boston Globe say why we'd do that? How about a link?

Posted by: Steve_R | November 13, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Pierre Lebron wrote an blog about Ovie and brought up how he disagreed with what Semin said about crosby.....shocker

Posted by: _stevo | November 13, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Between the Bullets and the Caps, the Caps draw better now(refuse to call them Wizards...bring that name back after Abe dies please). 24% rise in Caps season tixs over l yr. ago.
Ice is bad but the VC center is not old at all. 10 yrs. isnt anything. someone NEEDS to address this.
Caps look fantastic lately.

Posted by: phrdlick | November 13, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Nylander to the Blackhawks? I really don't know what I think about that.

He has been very effective with the puck and I think his last few games have been his best but he only gets about 13 minutes a game.

Who/what would we get in return? Who would we put in his place? Do we replace him with another playmaker or do we go with 2 energy lines?

I don't know. Unless this is part of a larger plan to free up cap space for some other signings (and I will not mention any players from Atlanta), I think we are better off with him than without him.

Posted by: ChrisAm | November 13, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

here is article from Boston Globe on Nylander
Rumors abound that the Hawks are closing in on a deal with the Caps to acquire ex-Bruin forward Michael Nylander, 36, who played here for a couple of seasons when he was entering his prime in his early-30s.

With so many kids in the Hawks lineup, Nylander's veteran presence would help coach Joel Quenneville in pressure situations, especially when the post-season comes around. Nylander missed half of last season because of injury, but has been healthy from the start this season, collecting 2 goals and 9 points.

Nylander turned out to be only a rental in the Hub of Hockey, collecting 12 points in 15 games in the spring of 2004. He then picked up six points in six games vs. the Habs in the playoff series in which the Bruins folded up against the Canadiens.

Posted by: phrdlick | November 13, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Dude, Ilya isn't coming here.

Posted by: Steve_R | November 13, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

OK, can we start trading posters from this blog yet?

Posted by: superpaqman | November 13, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: lylewimbledon | November 13, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

We should trade Nyles for James Wisniewski and a draft pick. He'll be healthy in a few months and he's a solid performer at both ends as a defenseman. Trading Nylander also frees up a roster spot and salary space if we want to make a move at the deadline. As long he's amenable to waiving his NTC

Posted by: cstanton1 | November 13, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Nylander has been one of our best Clark- he has been worthless.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | November 13, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Wisniewski doesn't make enough for Nylander to fit under the cap. We'll have to take a big salary back I think. That's Campbell, Khabibullin or Havlat.

Posted by: ChrisAm | November 13, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Nyls to Chicago?

For Brent Seabrook or Aaron Johnson and picks that would be good. If a Nyls trade is made for anybody else on that team, GM should be slapped to death.

I'd be hestitent to break up this team at this point, but a second line forward making the second highest salary is still bugging me.

I'd especially like to dump all that salary for Johnson. That would be good.

Posted by: large23220 | November 13, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Bad ice? They're 6-0-1 at home. Maybe home ice is indeed an advantage to us.

Anybody notice how lively the boards were in RBC? They had a direct effect on two of the goals.

Posted by: AleksanderOMunchkin | November 13, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Oh, here we go with the Nylander trade rumors again. Wake me up when it actually happens.

Posted by: kittypawz | November 13, 2008 7:46 PM | Report abuse

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