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Semin 'Questionable' for Tonight

Here's the latest from KCI:

Alexander Semin, who, like many of his teammates, has been suffering from the flu, is questionable for tonight's game against the Lightning. I noticed Semin limping as he walked out of KCI the other day -- I believe he was struck with a shot in a recent game -- but Coach Bruce Boudreau insisted that he's just under the weather and not nursing an injury.

"He's still got it," Boudreau said. "Half the team still has got it. But you can't replace half the team."

If Semin can't go, Keith Aucoin will suit up.

Callup Osala Is In
Oskar Osala will suit up tonight and replace Donald Brashear on the fourth line. He might see only a few minutes, Boudreau said, but the coaching staff wants to see how much progress the hulking left wing has made since his last/first game in Washington on Dec. 7.

"There's not too many Brashears in the world," Boudreau said. "But we certainly like the big-bodied guys who can bang if you're going to be a fourth-line player. That's what we're going to use [Osala] for. He can skate, is physical and goes to the net. Those are things we like. We saw him briefly in the one game, and we always said we wanted to see him again. We know what Chris Bourque can do, but we're not sure what [Osala] can do."

Theo in Net
Jose Theodore is expected to start in goal tonight against the Lightning, who dropped a 3-2 overtime decision in Montreal last night. The Caps have won nine straight over the Lightning.

Injury Update
Chris Clark (wrist surgery) had the cast removed from his right forearm/wrist a week ago and has been skating in full pads the past few days. He told me this morning that he's hopeful about returning at the start of the second round.

Brent Johnson (hip surgery) is a little ahead of schedule, according to Boudreau. But the team still isn't sure he'll be back for the playoffs. He's been skating on his own with leg pads, but hasn't been facing shots.

Schultz Struggling
Jeff Schultz will be a healthy scratch for the first time this season. He's not the only Cap who has struggled the past month, but Boudreau apparently felt it was time to send the defenseman a message.

Asked if he thinks Schultz is wearing down mentally or physically, Boudreau said: "We had a meeting with him a little while ago and he didn't seem to be having any of those issues. But I've known Jeff for three years now and he's played a lot of hockey this year. Maybe he is getting tired at the end of the year. Whatever the reason, we know when he's on top of his game how good he is for us. We need him on top of his game in a couple of weeks."

Ovie's New Ride
Check back in a little while for an update on Alex Ovechkin's growing collection of exotic cars. He picked up a new toy today.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  March 27, 2009; 11:38 AM ET
 
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Comments

Schultz for Norris

Posted by: SA-Town | March 27, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

My first game of the season tonight - probably the last one, too. The wife and son bought 2 tix for tonight for my b'day. I'm so looking forward to this game!

In the nose bleeds (409) but THERE. :D

Posted by: Greg S. | March 27, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Osala!!! I'm pumped about this young guy. I hope he has a real solid game. I'm expecting a solid performance tonight from the Caps.

(I just realized I haven't posted in a very long time!!)

Posted by: dcox50 | March 27, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

dcox50-- I agree. I've been looking forward to seeing Osala back in since we got a glimpse of him a few months ago.

Happy bday, Greg! Enjoy the game-- I'm thinking (and hoping) tonight will be the start of a solid run leading up to the playoffs. I know the caps will be extremely glad to be back home!

Posted by: happy_cap | March 27, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I am interested in seeing Osala, loved him in opening camp, wasn't too impressed in the Dec game (chalking that up to a bunch of nerves and not wanting to do something wrong) but will be interesting to see what he can bring tonight.

Posted by: caps28fan | March 27, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

I heard he preordered an SLR Black, is that what Ovie got?

Posted by: cupcrzy | March 27, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Greg S: I sit in the nosebleeds of 413; there aren't really any bad seats in Verizon Center. It's pretty funny though, every game I encounter at least two things:

1) Someone will comment to their friend while walking past my seat that they're getting lightheaded or that their nose is bleeding, etc. There was this one lady that was freaking out because she was apparently afraid of heights!

2) Someone will stop in the aisle near to my seat and look extremely confused about what they should do next. Sometimes I just want to say "Um, your seat location is printed on your ticket, and they're all in alphabetical/numerical order." :)

Posted by: GregAnnapolis | March 27, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Is Ovie's new ride his freebie from Easterns?

Posted by: Caps1Fan | March 27, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

did semin preorder the same car as Ovie?

Posted by: _stevo | March 27, 2009 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Ovechkin got a new vehicle... that should pump him up even HIGHER for tonight's game. Oh, and Happy B-Day, Greg... hope you and the family enjoy!

Posted by: UngaBunga | March 27, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Maybe that was Semin, I'm confuzeled.

Posted by: cupcrzy | March 27, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

I'm confused. I'm not a big Schultz fan, but I actually think he's been improving over the past few weeks. I would have been all for scratching him last month, but not now.

Posted by: capsfan26 | March 27, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Thank GOD Schultz is sitting......

Posted by: numero94 | March 27, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

GregAnnapolis

It's that rarified air you get at high altitudes.

I used to travel all the time (70-80% on the road) across the US and Canada. Whenever I could I'd take in a local hockey game. I watched a lot of A/WHL games on the road, and a few NHL games. The arenas in Columbus and San Jose are pretty much up there. Seemed much worse than Calgary or Edmonton.

Posted by: Greg S. | March 27, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Greg,
Up high is actually good at VC since the seating is very steep. The only annoying part is when you get people who lean over and block the seat in front of you or touch your head.

I prefer sitting higher up as you can really take in the whole rink at once without too much effort

Posted by: trunkenmath | March 27, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

I hate people that lean...

Posted by: Steve_R | March 27, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Yeah leaners SUCK!!

Posted by: bhound69 | March 27, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

@Greg S.
My "birthday present game" was last month, the Sunday game when Caps beat the Pens 5-2. Hope you get a similar result for your game tonight.

Posted by: tess2201 | March 27, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Teddy would love it if it was your Bday, everyday!

Posted by: bhound69 | March 27, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

1) Someone will comment to their friend while walking past my seat that they're getting lightheaded or that their nose is bleeding, etc. There was this one lady that was freaking out because she was apparently afraid of heights!

Posted by: GregAnnapolis | March 27, 2009 12:15 PM

@Greg: Yeah,the first couple of times I took my son to a Caps Game I almost had to carry him, he was so terrified. But he got used to it and now is a Caps Fan 4 life...

Posted by: Rhino40 | March 27, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Up high is actually good at VC since the seating is very steep. The only annoying part is when you get people who lean over and block the seat in front of you or touch your head.

I prefer sitting higher up as you can really take in the whole rink at once without too much effort


Posted by: trunkenmath | March 27, 2009 12:39 PM

@trunkenmath: Too true! IMHO, that's the only really bad thing about the nosebleeds: people who don't know in-game manners.

Posted by: Rhino40 | March 27, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

The nosebleed seats are where the true hockey fans sit. Rowdy, double-fisted and proud to Rock The Red! Go Caps! The only drawback to sitting in the upper deck is that you might trip on the way down the stairs after quaffing 9 brews.

Posted by: djdavew2002 | March 27, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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