Good Morning from Arlington. As the Caps take to the ice here at KCI for their morning pre-game skate before their matchup with the Columbus Blue Jackets this evening at Verizon Center, below are a few notes regarding personnel on the ice this morning:
The team seems to be skating close to full strength, although there are a few notable names not participating today. Alex Ovechkin and Jason Arnott appear to be resting this morning as they continue to play their way back into the mix after tending to their respective nagging injuring last week. Alex Semin also appears to be taking the day off from the skate.
Eric Fehr, who saw some time at the point on the power play on Tuesday and, again at practice yesterday, is skating hard following his recent shoulder troubles.
The Caps are running drills, so they did not break up into line combinations.
Coach Bruce Boudreau does not appear to be conducting the show this morning, as Woods and Evason are calling the shots.
Forwards not on the ice this morning:
Ovechkin, Semin, Arnott
Hannan, Erskine, Carlson, Alzner, Sloan, Poti, and Schultz are all skating this morning.
Defensemen not on the ice this morning.
As expected, Dennis Wideman is absent from the morning skate as he remains day-to-day with a lower body injury following his fall and collision with Tuomo Ruutu during the second period against the Canes on Tuesday evening. The other key point man on the powerplay, Mike Green, continues to rehab from his concussion and was still not on the ice practicing with the rest of the team.
Varlamov and Neuvirth are both in net this morning, and it appears as though Neuvi will get the start tonight, as he was the first one off the ice. Neuvi has been taking shots from the forwards and is working with goalie coach Irbe this morning, while Varly faced the defensemen in drills.
As the practice winds down, the following players remain on the ice, which is a likely indication that they will be scratched for tonight's game:
DJ King, Eric Fehr, Jay Beagle, along with Tom Poti.
That's all from KCI this morning. Be sure to visit Andy Green's full breakdown of tonight's match-up with some insight into the potential pitfalls of not getting sufficiently geared up for a game against a playoff-hungry team that has been riding a seemingly unlucky streak in close games as of late.
Game time is 7:00pm.
Catch the action live on Versus [HD] for national audiences, CSN-DC [HD] for the DC Metro Area, and Caps Radio 1500 over the airwaves.