The Washington Times - November 15, 2011, 07:33AM

Cody Eakin played just 12:18 in two games over the weekend. That was the result of Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau shortening his bench on back-to-back nights against the Devils, prioritizing experience.

The Hershey Bears had a game Sunday, but the 20-year-old prospect getting his first taste of the NHL did not get sent down to the minors to get some extra work in. Asked about it Monday, Boudreau implied that the organization did not give it much thought.

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“I thought practice here would be better,” the coach said. “I don’t think that ever crossed anybody’s mind.”

Eakin said he was not asked about it, either. There was no doubt he was going on the road trip to Nashville, Winnipeg and Toronto, with the game at the Jets on Thursday representing a return to Eakin’s hometown.

As for 12:18 in two games, Eakin gets that, too.

“I kind of understand that and I know the game. That has to happen,” he said. “That’s just the way it is.”

Eakin skated on the third line Monday with Marcus Johansson and Joel Ward. He’s not thinking about Hershey, not with this chance to show himself in the NHL.

“They don’t really say too much. Just enjoy my time here, and when they don’t need me anymore, then I’m going [back to Hershey],” he said.

He’s set to be in the Caps’ lineup at the Predators.