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Saturday Afternoon Update

Here's the lastest from HP Pavilion:

Brent Johnson will start and face San Jose's Brian Boucher, who has been rock solid in place of Evgeni Nabokov. Nabokov will return from injury tonight and back up Boucher.

Mike Green and Alexander Semin are out for the Caps. Boudreau said of Green: "We're pleasantly surprised by the way he's recuperating." As for Semin, Boudreau said he's "very, very close" and was hoping to play tonight, but now is aiming to return Monday in Minnesota. (Semin, by the way, is getting frustrated. He tossed his helmet in the dressing room when I asked him how he was doing.)

Sergei Fedorov said, barring a setback, he is planning to play. If he does, then the lineup will look like it did this morning. If he doesn't, Boudreau said, "everything is subject to change."

Some other notes and quotes:

*As you may have read in my story in today's Post, the Caps have dropped 10 straight against the Sharks (their longest current losing streak to one team) and haven't won in San Jose since 1993.

"You can't explain it," Boudreau said. "All I know is we haven't lost to them at all, this team. So I don't even look at what's happened in the past."

"We just have to be ready," he added. "If we're not we're going to be behind by four."

*Today is the one-year anniversary of Boudreau's hiring. In the 80 games since, he's 48-22-10, which would put him on pace for a 109 points. Not too bad.

*Random factoid of the day: Shot-blocking star Brooks Laich is an unabashed fan of Hootie and the Blowfish. Who knew?

*About a dozen members of the fan club made the trip out west, and a bunch of them were at the Shark Tank for the morning skate.

I'll check in later if anything changes.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 22, 2008; 3:49 PM ET
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Next: Tonight's Lineup


Now people will speculate that the Caps are holding Semin out because he's getting traded.

Tarik, BUY A CAMARA! Or maybe we can buy you one for Xmas

Posted by: Leeguru | November 22, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Semin frustrated I don't think is a good sign, as it means that he's not healing as fast as he thinks he should be. I just hope we don't bring him back too soon. Better a little late than too soon.

Way to go, Johnny! Although, I thought Jose looked good in Anaheim. I just hope the D is solid tonight.

Posted by: DrinkingPartner | November 22, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Hootie? Seriously? Hootie?

Posted by: goskinsgo | November 22, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

The way Laich plays, stopping shots with his back and hand, he can listen to ABBA, Air Supply, and SYTX (or Journey) for all I care. The guy is as tough as they come, Hootie or no.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS | November 22, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry, but I would have to draw the line at Air Supply even for Brooks.

Seriously, not sure what to make of the Hootie thing. But, considering I have this unexplicable fascination with Maroon 5, I have no room to talk at the moment.

Posted by: Kim-3 | November 22, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

What's the word, my friend? BTW, did you read that article? If so, what did you think?

Posted by: Boo- | November 22, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Tonight we will see how the Caps match up with the best team in the NHL. Hopefully Caps play good enough to win. It will hurt to lose two in a row.

Posted by: rachel216 | November 22, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Boo, the word for the day is:

Stellar Parallax

(Ok, two words. I was doing homework)

THe page would not load when i clicked on it. It could be my internet at work. My computer at home has died. Now I have to hope Santa brings me one for Xmas. Lord knows car sales are slow....

Posted by: Leeguru | November 22, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Hmm ... I was hoping for the real work behind the Nyls chatter, but I suppose stellar parallax will do (and why is that the word, again?). Sorry you couldn't read the article - it was a good one. If you are nice to Steve, maybe he will print it out for you. Regarding car sales, sorry I can't help with that one - all my spare money goes to the Caps ... ;-)

Posted by: Boo- | November 22, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

No, I have no inside info on the Nyls front. I am working on it though. His wife hasn't answered about the tickets either. I may have to go to their house!

That's the word because that was what my homework was about this week in Astronomy. I'm treyeing to git mor edumacated.

Posted by: Leeguru | November 22, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse


Stellar whoozitz?

Posted by: Steve_R | November 22, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

It's how to measure the distance to a star. accurate up to 100 parsecs

Posted by: Leeguru | November 22, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Leeguru is a smarty pants ...

Posted by: Boo- | November 22, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Nope. Just full of useless trivia

Posted by: Leeguru | November 22, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of edumacation, all of the chat about clubs in DC is making me think of college. I've been to the 9:30 Club fairly recently, but the rest?!? Yeah, I can't hang ...

Posted by: Boo- | November 22, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Great taste in music, Brooksy.. Poor Semin, but it's good i guess that he's making sure he's healed before playing. Rather have him out for 5 games than the rest of the season.

Posted by: sprkatya38 | November 22, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Go, Go, Go, Johnny, Go!

Leeguru, whats a camara? Does Chevy still make those? Would it be comfy for Tarik's long drives to hockey games?

Posted by: majiksea | November 22, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

Wow, is it 10:30 yet? These late starts kill me - even on a weekend.

I may be showing my age, but didn't the Fifth Column used to be the Dome in the 80s?

I have faith we'll give it a really good run tonight against the Sharks. It will be a close game, but I believe our boys will win! GO CAPS!

Posted by: BlondeCapsFan | November 22, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Come on. Whats wrong with Hootie? They wrote Theo's theme song.."Every Time I Look at You I Go Blind" which is what seems to happen when he see's the puck! Ha Ha.

@ blonde- I think the Dome was at 21st and M streets back in the day. The 5th became the Vault and I think it was also called the bank. I think.

Thanks for the great updates Tarik. You, as always, doing a great job far from home.

Nap time if I'm going to make it through the whole game. Geez I'm getting old :(

Posted by: lamplighter1 | November 22, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

"You can't explain it," Boudreau said. "All I know is we haven't lost to them at all, this team. So I don't even look at what's happened in the past."

Great answer. When would reporters stop making a big deal of previous years head-to-head confrontations? Different teams, different circumstances, apples and oranges comparison in my opinion.

Is good to know that Semin is close to ready. I am also glad that Nylander has been given a little more room in the doghouse.

Posted by: opita | November 22, 2008 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Lamp, my partying/clubbing days were so long ago, I can't remember which club is which... thanks for clarifying :)

I'm with you on napping. I need to rest if I want to stay up to watch the game that late. I unfortunately have an early morning tomorrow.

Posted by: BlondeCapsFan | November 22, 2008 7:07 PM | Report abuse

Way to go, Brooks! Anyone who says Hootie and the Blowfish stink isn't a right thinking american.

Kind of surprised to see Johnny playing tonight, even though he played pretty well in the last game. I guess Theo is surely going to play against the Wild (especially after schooling them in the playoffs last year)

Posted by: Vic_Mackey | November 22, 2008 7:18 PM | Report abuse

If you get the chance, check out the Chicago-Toronto game on NHLN. Chicago's Eager might have gotten away with a charging/boarding call and was jawing at the Leafs bench afterwards. Looks like things could get choppy.

0-0 with 3 mins left in the first.

Posted by: Section117 | November 22, 2008 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Hershey Bears tied with bridgeport soundtigers 1-1 at start of second period.

Posted by: uncatim | November 22, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Still 1-1 after two, Bears with 29 shots to 13 but can't get the puck in the net.

Posted by: uncatim | November 22, 2008 8:24 PM | Report abuse

Links for tonight's game, just in case:

*pushes up his nerdy glasses*

Posted by: mauree | November 22, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Lepisto 5-hole on the power play! 2-1 Bears, 17 & change remaining in 3rd.

Posted by: uncatim | November 22, 2008 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Oskar Osala! 3-1 Bears!

Posted by: uncatim | November 22, 2008 8:46 PM | Report abuse

Graham Mink gets his 10th of the year! 4-1 Bears, 9:33 remaining in 3rd.

Posted by: uncatim | November 22, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Final 4-1 Bears, they retake 1st place East Division.

Posted by: uncatim | November 22, 2008 9:09 PM | Report abuse

I always knew that Osala kid was special, he's really impressed me so far in all the games this year, always gives a 100% no matter what, the type of player any team would benefit from.

Posted by: diehardcapsfan | November 22, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

@lamplighter - The song "I Go Blind" was a hit in Canada by a band called 54-40, long before Hootie copied it and released it in the US. (youtube it).

While I'm on that one, another one that bugs me is the song "Life is a Highway" which was a hit in Canada by Tom Cochran, long before Rascal Flatts re-released it for the animated movie "Cars".

Anyways - I think the Caps are going to get "lit" tonight by the Sharks. Their offense is too big/strong while our defense is tall and lanky with no bite.

The Sharks also haven't played since Monday, so they're well rested while we're playing our third game in 4 nights on the West Coast.

Well, only slightly under 1 hour before the puck drops.

PS - Glad to hear Boudreau would have 109 points in make-believe land.

Posted by: Jaymagz | November 22, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse


I checked out that Justin.TV link this past week since I couldn't watch it on my TV. It was pretty good. Nothing really geeky about it. Just a good tool. :)

Posted by: Greg S. | November 22, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

mauree is our token multi-lingual Italian computer geek (and I say that with the utmost respect) ... doesn't every blog have one? If not, I pity them - this place would be lost without him!!! :-)

Posted by: Boo- | November 22, 2008 10:25 PM | Report abuse

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