Caps Knock off Sabres 4-3 in OT

Posted by Dave Nichols | Friday, September 18, 2009 | , , | 0 comments »

Alexandre Giroux, Mike Knuble and Jay Beagle scored for the Capitals in regulation, and Brian Pothier netted the game winner in OT to give the Caps a 4-3 win against Buffalo in their first pre-season game.

Pothier's goal came on a 5-on-3 advantage in the extra frame after Mike Weber boarded Brendan Morrison, knocking him into the boards from behind. Morrison stayed down for a couple minutes, but was described as "fine" after the game. Pothier added and assist on Knuble's goal earlier in the third period.

Semyon Varlamov stopped 17 shots in the first two periods, but surrendered three goals on six shots in the third. "I think Varly was outstanding the first two periods," Coach Bruce Boudreau said. "They got [three] in the third, but I thought he was really good."

Washington won 62 perfect of their face-offs, with Beagle (70 percent), Brendan Morrison (68 percent) and Nicklas Backstrom (63 percent) leading the way.

"There were a lot of good things," Boudreau said of the game. "In the third period, even though they got three goals, we were the dominant team, which was good."

NOTES: Defenseman Tyler Sloan finished with five blocked shots.

The Caps out shot Buffalo 33-23. Backstrom led the team with five shots, Beagle had four.

Backstrom assisted on Knuble's tip in and the game-winner. Morrison and Chris Clark assisted on Giroux's goal and Andrew Gorgon got the helper on Beagle's tally.

Caps Hit the Ice Against Buffalo

Posted by Dave Nichols | Thursday, September 17, 2009 | , , | 0 comments »

No Ovie. No Semin. No Green. No Nylander. But it should be a good look at some guys that coul dbe called upon this season as the grind of 82 games takes its toll.

It'll be the first time we see Mike Knuble and Brendan Morrison pull on the red, white and blue. Knuble scored twice earlier this week to lead his team to the Gaetan Duchesne Cup, the winning team in a round robin tournament coach Bruce Boudreau set up to relieve some of the tediousness of training camp.

Here's the schedule for this weekend at Kettler:

Thursday, Sept. 17
10 a.m.: Morning skate
11:15 a.m.: Practice
1 p.m.: Practice
7 p.m.: at Buffalo, HSBC Arena, Buffalo, N.Y.

Friday, Sept. 18
10 a.m.: Group A practice
11:30 a.m.: Group B practice

Saturday, Sept. 19
10 a.m.: Morning skate
11:15 a.m.: Group B practice
8:30 p.m. ET: at Chicago, United Center
Radio: Caps Radio 1500 and 820 AM, TV: CSN (Chicago)

And great big Happy Birthday to Alex Ovechkin, who turns all of 24 years of age today. It's good to be Ovie!

Caps: Boys Are Back In Town

Posted by Cheryl Nichols | Monday, September 14, 2009 | , , , | 0 comments »

Posted by Cheryl Nichols, Contributor and Photographer for Capitals News Network

The Caps held their first practice of training camp on Sunday, Sept. 13 in preparation for the 2009-10 NHL season. Fans won't be surprised to hear that Alex Ovechkin was the first player on the ice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex.

Sixty-eight players (40 forwards, 22 defensemen and six goaltenders) are listed on the Capitals’ training camp roster and 65 of those players took the ice today at Kettler.

The absentees were left wing Tomas Fleischmann, goaltender Braden Holtby and defenseman Grant McNeill. Holtby tweaked a groin and was held out as a precautionary measure. McNeill had off-season knee surgery and is not ready to go as of yet.

According to Mike Vogel, Fleischmann is suffering from deep vein thrombosis, a condition that may have been inflicted on the long airline flight from D.C. to Fleischmann’s home in the Czech Republic at the conclusion of last season. Caps coach Bruce Boudreau expects Flesichmann to be able to return to practice sometime in October and perhaps to the lineup by the second or third week of next month. See Vogel's other training camp updates here. *UPDATED* Fleischmann talks about his blood clot.

The first practice brought many season ticket holders and other fans to Kettler to catch a first glance at the Caps and welcome them back to the ice. Some fans were impressed by Mike Knuble, one of the newest Caps, and his drives to the net.

One fan mentioned that both Jose Theodore and Semyon Varlamov looked strong and made some "awesome" saves. One of the younger players, John Carlson, took one to the lower lip in a battle for the puck.

·Newcombers Mike Knuble and Brendan Morrison are ready to play.
·Mike Green has a good feeling about this year.
·Alexander Semin will be conversing more with the media thanks to translator Dmitry Chesnokov.
·Jose Theodore is facing biggest challenge of his life after the recent death of his two month old son.
·Michael Nylander wants to play in NHL.
·Check out the interviews with Coach Bruce and several players from training camp here.

If you missed the Annual Rookie game on Friday, Sept 11 against Flyers in Philadelpha, you can watch the game online. Flyers win 7-3. Caps outshoot Philly 32-27. Period 1, Period 2, Period 3.

Teams B & C scrimmage at 12:15 p.m. today, Sept. 14 at Kettler which is free and open to the public.