|And the plot thickens...|
Rookie Dustin Tokarski is expected to make his first career NHL start this evening for Guy Boucher's men. Tokarski, who's callup was only necessary because of an injury to Mathieu Garon, is 27-11 in the AHL so far with year with a 2.34 GAA, .907 save percentage, and four shutouts. He has played 44 minutes at the NHL level in relief, however, allowing three goals on 16 shots in that limited action. Outside the crease, Tampa has several injuries, none more significant than the absence of captain Vincent Lecavalier, who has a broken hand. Defensemen Marc-Andre Bergeron (back surgery) and Mattias Ohlund (knee), as well as forward Dana Tyrell (undisclosed) will also not play.
Tomas Vokoun will start in goal for the Capitals, as Michal Neuvirth has been in the net for three consecutive losses, though they were no fault of his own. Vokoun, who has not played in over two weeks, is 23-16-2 on the year with a 2.52 GAA, .917 save percentage, and four shutouts. He allowed two goals on 23 shots in a 2-1 loss the last time he faced the Bolts. On the injury front, the Caps are still without Nicklas Backstrom because of a concussion; he is not even in the country right now as he is visiting family in his native Sweden. In addition, despite the three consecutive losses, Hunter will keep his lineup intact, which means that John Erskine, Mike Knuble, and Roman Hamrlik will remain scratched.
Puck drops 7:09-ish. As always, follow me on Twitter here for news and updates.