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 24, 2012

Gameday: vs. Boston, Jan. 24

The Caps will lean heavily on Sasha tonight.
The Washington Capitals will welcome the Boston Bruins to Verizon Center on Tuesday night as they try and shake a recent run of unsuccessful games and go into the All-Star break on a high note.  The Caps enter this game 5-4-1 in their last ten games and 25-19-3 overall for 53 standings points in 47 games.  The Capitals are therefore a point behind the Panthers for the Southeast Division lead and eighth in the Eastern Conference playoff race, barely hanging on.  The Stanley Cup Champion Bruins, however, are on the other end of the spectrum, flying high with a 6-3-1 record in their last ten and a 31-13-2 record overall for 64 standings points in 46 games.  Those 64 points place them first in the Northeast Division and second overall in the Eastern Conference.  This is the first of four meetings between these two clubs this season.

Tim Thomas, who skipped Monday's celebratory visit to the White House because he opposes President Obama's politics, has been benched and Tuukka Rask will play.  Rask, who made 30 saves on 33 shots in his last start against the Rangers, is 11-4-2 on the year with a 1.69 GAA, .943 save percentage, and three shutouts.  Outside the crease, Boston will be without Marc Savard, who has missed almost two years now with a concussion, as well as Nathan Horton, who has a "mild" concussion himself.  Defenseman Andrew Ference will miss tonight's game as well, as he will serve the second game of a three game ban for boarding New York's Ryan McDonagh on Saturday.

Tomas Vokoun wills start for Dale Hunter after Michal Neuvirth lost in Pittsburgh on Sunday afternoon.  Vokoun is 19-12 on the year with a 2.55 GAA, .917 save percentage, and two shutouts, and was excellent in his last start in Carolina despite a 3-0 loss last Friday.  On the injury front, both Nicklas Backstrom (concussion) and Mike Green (sports hernia surgery) are out.  Captain Alex Ovechkin will start his three game suspension which was handed down to him late Monday for a hit during Sunday's loss to the Penguins and will not play.  After Tomas Kundratek was sent down to Hershey on Monday, look for John Erskine to remain in the lineup over Jeff Schultz (though this still makes no sense).

Puck drops 7:09-ish.

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