Washington Capitals (7-2-2, 16 pts, 1st in Southeast Division)
Atlanta Thrashers (4-3-1, 9 pts, 2nd in Southeast Division)
7:00 pm from Phillips Arena
This is the second consecutive Thursday these two teams meet, but both are significantly different teams than the last meeting, a 5-4 Caps win, Washington getting five goals from five different player, none names Ovechkin.
Atlanta now finds themselves missing their top player, Ilya Kovalchuk, who scored twice in last week's melee. Kovalchuk will be out several weeks with a broken bone in his right foot.
The Capitals will be without shot-blocker extraordinaire Quentin Laing, who was diagnosed with H1N1 and sent home from the team. Eric Fehr missed Thursday's win over Philadelphia with an "upper body injury", believed to be bruised ribs from blocking a shot the other night.
Returning for this contest, though, is Alexander Semin, who missed out in the fun in Atlanta last week while nursing an undisclosed illness/injury, and the possible return of Tomas Fleischmann, who was activated by the team yesterday in is return from a blood clot in his leg.
Alexandre Giroux was returned to AHL Hershey to make room for Fleischmann.
Scratches: Fehr, Laing
WAS: GF: 2nd (40/3.64); GA: 13st (31/2.82); PP: 21st (9/52, 17.3%); PK: 10th (10/54, 81.5%)
ATL: GF: 4th (28/3.50); GA: 14th (23/2.88); PP: 4th (9/32, 28.1%): PK: 3rd (5/36, 86.1%)_______________________________________________________
WAS: G: Ovechkin (11) A: Backstrom (12) P: Ovechkin (19) +/-: Ovechkin (+11)
ATL: Kovalchuk (9) A: Antropov (7) P: Kovalcuk, Peverley (10) +/-: Kubina (+4)
WAS: D John Erskine (IR-hand), F Boyd Gordon (DTD-back), Quentin Laing (DTD-Flu), Eric Fehr (DTD-Ribs)
ATL: LW Ilya Kovalchuk (IR-Foot), D Boris Valabik (IR-Ankle), G Kari Lehtonen (IR-back), C Nik Antropov (QUE-groin)