SUNRISE, Fla. | Jose Theodore’s last game he played in with the Washington Capitals was April 17, 2010 against the Montreal Canadiens. In the two seasons since, spent with the Minnesota Wild and now the Florida Panthers, he has never faced the Caps.
That changes Friday night, as Theodore is expected to be in goal for Friday night’s Southeast Division showdown. Twice this season the 35-year-old was injured when the two teams met, and the other time he was sick.
But the Caps know what they’re getting in Theodore, thanks to the two seasons he spent here before leaving in free agency in the summer of 2010. And Brooks Laich said having Tomas Vokoun, another right-handed-catching goaltender, around helps.
“We’re pretty fortunate to have Vokey on our team, so you get used to facing a guy like that. Theo is not the biggest guy, but he’s going to try and come out a little bit and play the angle a little bit more,” Laich said. “He’s pretty acrobatic, but a big guy, could sit more in his net because he’s a little bit bigger, and a smaller guy has to come out and try and cut down the angle a little bit more.”
As with any goalie, Laich said “the most important thing is get traffic.” The Panthers are likely saying the same thing about Vokoun, the goaltender who spurned them for free agency last offseason.
But Vokoun doesn’t care much for the story line of him vs. Theodore.
“That’s not my concern who’s the other goalie. I’ve got my job,” Vokoun said. “I’ve got to focus on my job and we as a team has to focus on what we need to do to beat them. Whatever they play, they play.”