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Poti Is Healthy -- Finally

Tom Poti is back, and for the first time since early last season, he's completely healthy. If you recall, the veteran defenseman suffered a serious shoulder in October and was not the same the rest of the season.

In addition to forcing him out of the lineup twice for a total of nine games, Poti's subluxed shoulder prevented him from shooting the puck with much velocity and hampered his ability to make passes, especially passes across his body. It also hurt to throw shoulder checks, he said.

"I couldn't shoot as well as I wanted to, or pass as well as I wanted to," Poti said this morning. "I just had no strength all year. The problem was I kept coming back too soon. I never really gave the right amount of time to heal."

Well, he got that time over the summer and now says the shoulder is 100-percent, as is the foot injury he suffered late in the season after blocking a shot. That's an important development for the Caps, since Poti plays in all situations and ranked behind only Mike Green in ice time among defensemen last season, skating an average of 23:28.

With the arrival of Poti and Milan Jurcina today, that means all but three of the Capitals regulars are present and accounted for ahead of training camp, which begins Saturday. (Viktor Kozlov, Sergei Fedorov and Alexander Semin are due later this week.)

Note: Anton Gustafsson did not skate again today, two days after aggravating a herniated disc during a tough session of suicides.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  September 16, 2008; 11:10 AM ET
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Next: Boudreau's Rookie Camp Short List



Posted by: GottaGettaLife | September 16, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

How do players and trainers draw the line btw playing hurt and playing stoopid? Semin, Nylander, Poti, Clark all beg this question. AnGus and Backstrom wait with me for a thoughtful answer.

Posted by: redlineblue | September 16, 2008 11:28 AM | Report abuse


Is that salmon on a hoagie roll?

Posted by: NJ | September 16, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse what about that Pothier guy?
Did I just miss it?

Posted by: marksman | September 16, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Those Russkies sure do like to cut it close.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 16, 2008 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Tarik, Good to hear!

I expect much more from Poti this season.

Posted by: fullright | September 16, 2008 11:46 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: mark tinordi | September 16, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

The news on Poti is appreciated and all, but it has been 8 days since we were to hear about the final roster for the Spirit Squad and so far NOTHING.

What gives?

Posted by: Girl Watcher | September 16, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

good to know he won't have that nagging him to start the year.

Jurcina showed up, when can he leave?

Posted by: reekie | September 16, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I like Poti but this makes me wonder... During playoffs what's better, playing a solid guy who is not at 100% or replacing them with a fresh set of legs from the roster?
In other words if Green was not 100% the last few games of the Flyers series would someone else have been better in that position (even if they aren't the same caliber as Green?)

Posted by: Capies | September 16, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse

I'm looking into changing my tv/internet provider from comcast to verizon fios. The only thing that holds me back is the hockey thing. To those that have verizon, I see that they have News channel 8 and Comcast in HD. Sometimes they show games on reg broadcast while Basketball is on HD. What is your experience with Verizon at this point? Will I get to see all the games? Thanks for your help!

Posted by: oo7 | September 16, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse


I was looking into fios also but was
unsure about versus in HD. versus is
televising seven of the games I think.
Comcast also says a few games (not in
HD) will be televised on CSN+. I have
no idea if Fios has that.

Good luck, I'd love to hear from a
fios user as well.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 16, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

What was BB thinking skating Anton G. like that? Six weeks ago the kid wasn't healthy enough post-surgery for development camp.... so how was he going to be in suicides shape?!

Posted by: NWDC | September 16, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Vladamir Putin is holding those missing three, as the core rebuilding block of "Team Mother Russia."

Posted by: Anonymous | September 16, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Another TV question: if you get Center Ice, are the Caps games blacked out? If i have FIOS but no CSN+, can i watch the game on Center Ice, or do i miss it because Comcast has relegated the Caps to channel 23 (on Moco Comcast box)?

Posted by: oo7 | September 16, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Yes, in the Washington, DC area, Capitals games on Center Ice are blacked out.

Posted by: Gustafsson | September 16, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully, now that we have a little more depth, the training staff can keep injured players off the ice till they really heal.


Posted by: Sapper | September 16, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

@ oo7

FIOS has Comcast HD and as of Sept 22 will also have Versus HD (in Arlington - not sure about elsewhere).

I don't think there were any times when an HD Caps broadcast was misplaced by basketball - I was happy with it last year. It looks like between Comcast and Versus, nearly 60 caps games will be in HD - not bad.

Posted by: Arlington | September 16, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

@ Girl Watcher
I made it. That should be all you need.

Posted by: Cassi | September 16, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I had forgotten all about Poti. D'oh.

Posted by: 1995hoo | September 16, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

For the two FIOS TV questions:

FIOS has an extra channel (they call it FIOS 1) which shows extra sports games. During baseball season, it shows both the Orioles and Nats games broadcast by MASN and during basketball/hockey season, it should show both games when they are broadcast at the same time.

Also of note, as of tomorrow, FIOS will broadcast Versus in HD in Maryland. Not sure about VA or DC.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 16, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Poti stunk in the playoffs last year

Posted by: playa | September 16, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

FIOS did not have VS in HD last year, but will this season. They are switching their channel lineup next week. Here is a link to the PDF with the new channels.
When games are on CSN+ they are broadcast in SD on Channel 1. I doubt that will change, but it might.

Posted by: Fios Customer | September 16, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

I don't get CSN+ and can remember tuning into CSN a few times last season to be greeted by basketball.

Posted by: keef | September 16, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse


We were so dinged up on D by that point that Emmy was already playing. I'd prefer Green at 70% than Lepisto at 100%, really no one else aside from Sammi was waiting in the wings that I can think of.

Posted by: Steve R | September 16, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

thanks for your help concerning FIOS everyone; It looks like I can finally give Comcast the long-deserved boot! Overpriced, shoddy service, slow broadband...I'm done!

Posted by: oo7 | September 16, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Glad Poti is 100%, maybe now he can trip more guys on regular basis.

Posted by: Chief | September 16, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

So it sorta looks like we only had half a Poti last season. We should have a full Poti this season. With that being said, I think our defence is shaping up.


Posted by: Capsfannmiss | September 16, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

anyone know if the rookie game is going to be on the NHL network? After finally stopping playing NHL 09 I turned to NHL network and found that they have been showing rookie games

be a plus if Poti plays the way he did in the past and last year was a fluke

Posted by: capsgary | September 16, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse


hey, did you see Ted in NHL 09? say hello to him

Posted by: Dave King | September 16, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Does FIOs have the Center Ice Package now? I just looked and it said they did not. Comcast does not have REAL HD anyway, doubt it is much better than FIOs standard. I had Comcast for about a week before I told them to come get everything.

Posted by: Bob | September 16, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Poti is tougher than i gave him credit for. Look forward to seeing him healthy.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 16, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

By the way. Poti is healthy? Good! Trade him now before he gets hurt again!

Posted by: Bob | September 16, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse


What defenders are out there that are better/cheaper than Poti that we could get in a trade, why would we trade away a blueliner where we are so thin already?

Posted by: 8b4Ovie | September 16, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Bob: All that angst and panic you've been having over Semin has clouded your judgment about Poti.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 16, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

I'm in NY and picked up FIOS after they said they signed the contract for NHL Center Ice already... apparently not yet true so I'm screwed until they get something worked out. And no, the online center ice won't work because I can't catch games live.

Posted by: rh71 | September 16, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

I just got FIOS about a month ago. So far I am happy with it. One of my main concerns was VS in HD but they will have that before the season starts.

Posted by: Tim | September 16, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Just get satellite.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 16, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

We got Poti not for D but to quarterback the PowerPlay, to provide offense. He has not done either and with Green we don't need him to frankly. His defense has never been that strong and I'm just not sure he would be that hard to replace with a cheaper stay at home type D. We are paying Poti a premium for offensive skills that seem to have vanished, we need to get rid of 2+ million so we need to dump one of the expensive players better Poti than a skilled center. Again I just think we could replace him with a decent stay at home D for a lot less.

Posted by: Bob | September 16, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

The one thing that sucks though is no NHL network

Posted by: Tim | September 16, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

One bad thing about Verizon Fios is that they do NOT carry the NHL Network that is carried by DirecTV.

Posted by: MikeR | September 16, 2008 1:03 PM | Report abuse

By the way I have no real angst about Semin. He will trot in with Feds and Kozzie at the end of the week and be ready to play soon enough. I just thought all the gnashing of teeth over Alex S was funny personally.

Posted by: Bob | September 16, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I heard that about FIOS as well, the Center Ice contract, so I've been watching because I would drop my sat for FIOS and the better picture, but not without my hockey. The picture on cable though just sucks big time, would not have it for free.

Posted by: Bob | September 16, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Poti quarterbacking the 2nd PP unit will be interesting, now that he's healthy again and can make cross-body passes. Poti/Alzner might be a very interesting tandem.

Posted by: oo7 | September 16, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Sublexation, as explained when it happened to me, is when the ball in the shoulder joint partially comes out of place but then returns right away (sometimes completely & sometimes not). It can damage stuff around it, like the labrum (again my injury) or tendons. It hurts a normal person for a while so i cant imagine what it would feel like for an athlete.

Posted by: shoulder | September 16, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

If you are out of the DC market (like me) DirectTv is the way to go. They have Center Ice and with dual feeds, the NHL network, and show almost every cable channal in HD. Great quality HD.

There is a way to trick them into thinking you live out of DC area, that way you can get the dual feeds for Caps games. Get a VOP phone with a non-703/202/301 area code. Use that to subscribe to Direct TV, they will assume you are out of area and wont black out Caps games on Center Ice. I know its complicated, BUT its an option.

Posted by: Genotype55 | September 16, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Center Ice only blacks out Caps game for the away feed--i.e., if the Caps are at home and broadcasting over a satellite channel, such as CSN, then you'll get the game on Center Ice and on the local sports station. They only black it out if the other team's feed is the only one available.

And the rookie games that NHL Network is showing are the games at the Rookie Tournament in Traverse City, Michigan, so you won't see the Caps rookies on the NHL Network.

Posted by: Caps4ever | September 16, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Bob, I think we'd all love to hear a few names you have in mind to replace Poti, since it must not be that hard to replace him.

If you have any questions, I recommend you ask Chief--he's an expert on hockey (he knows LOTS of pros, and goes to EVERY game for FREE), skating (done that LOTS of times), and injury management (see Clark's groin thread from last month).

Posted by: bigonetimer | September 16, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

That really shows which russian is the best.

Posted by: mac | September 16, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Not sure about Comcast, but FIOS makes you sign a 2 year agreement that you can't get out of without major penalties.

Posted by: CT Caps Fan | September 16, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: will | September 16, 2008 11:43 PM | Report abuse


Thanks for the explanation. Ouch!

Posted by: Dave UK Caps Fan | September 17, 2008 5:13 AM | Report abuse

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