Each of the three injured Washington Capitals (Tom Poti, Boyd Gordon and Donald Brashear) that could play in Game 1 on Wednesday practiced with the team today. Bruce Boudreau said he expects all three to be available, but didn’t commit to any of them playing (yep, it’s playoff time).
Poti said he isn’t sure if he will be ready or not. When asked if he was surprised that three days off didn’t help his injured groin more, he said, ‘Nothing surprises me with it anymore,’ He wants to wait until after tomorrow to see how it feels. Gordon still has to wear something on his finger to protect it, but he said he will be ready to play if the coaching staff calls upon him.
Boudreau said Keith Aucoin was sent back to Hershey because Gordon is healthy and they didn’t want to waste one of their four “normal” call-ups if Aucoin wasn’t definitely going to be in the lineup. Aucoin was up on an emergency basis, so if he were to stick around, they would have to shuffle some paperwork.
The team is only allowed four non-emergency callups until the Hershey season ends (which might not be for a while). Washington used one on Brian Pothier, but the Caps are trying to hang onto the others.
One of the interesting aspects of this series when you crunch the numbers is the special teams battle. It will be strength against strength and weakness against (relative) weakness. More on that in tomorrow’s paper.
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