Welcome to Caps 'Round the Clock, a blog covering the Washington Capitals and the NHL. In season, I update the Blog after every practice and on game day with Caps news and information, and then provide a recap and analysis after each contest. I also write a periodical Prospect Watch and weekly feature pieces on the state of the Men in Red and other things Capitals. And of course, I will post videos and tidbits from around the League and offer my two cents as the season wears on. In the offseason, I write a Report Card for each player, and will keep you updated on all the news about the Caps through the summer. I'm glad you're here, and hope you come back!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Gameday: at Florida, Feb. 1

Maybe, one of these days, Sasha will break out...
The Washington Capitals are in Sunrise, Florida, this evening to take on the Panthers in a critical game for their playoff hopes as the final drive commences.  The Capitals, who lost in overtime in Tampa last night, is 5-3-2 in their last ten games and 26-19-4 overall for 56 standings points in 49 games.  They are therefore first in the Southeast Division, one point above these Panthers with one more game played, and third in the Eastern Conference, solely based on their Divisional seeding.  The Panthers, who lost in overtime in their last game before the break, are 3-3-4 in their last ten games and 22-15-11 overall for 55 standings points in 48 games.  Those 55 standings points place them second in the Southeast Division and ninth overall in the East.  This is the third of six meetings between these two clubs this season; the season series is split 1-1.

Scott Clemmensen will make the start in goal for Kevin Dineen's men because of an injury to regilar starter Jose Theodore.  Clemmensen is 6-2-5 on the year with a 2.72 GAA, .914 save percentage, and one shutout.  Outside the crease, the Panthers will be without defensemen Dmitry Kulikov (knee) and Ed Jovanovski (hand), who are both on the sideline with long-term injuries.  Winger Marco Sturm, also a former Capital, could make his return following an extended absence because of a concussion, while forward Kris Versteeg (illness) is officially questionable.

Michal Neuvirth is the suprise starter in goal this evening for the Capitals. Neuvirth, who lost his last start in Pittsburgh ten days ago, is 6-7-3 on the year with a 3.08 GAA, .892 save percentage, and two shutouts.  On the injury front, both Nicklas Backstrom (concussion) and Mike Green (sports hernia surgery) are out.  Alex Ovechkin will also be absent as he serves the third and final game of his suspension.  Joel Rechlicz, who was completely and utterly useless in 1:59 of ice time Tuesday, will stay in the lineup over Jay Beagle.  Jeff Schultz will also get a jersey for just the seventh time in the last eight weeks and first time in over a month, at the expense of John Erskine.

Puck drops 8:08-ish.  Check back later.

No comments:

Post a Comment