Michael Nylander will be the odd man out up front tonight, so says Bruce Boudreau. Nylander will be a healthy scratch for the fifth time this season. After having a mini-burst of four points in four games and eight in nine, Nylander has been held off the scoresheet for four straight contests despite earning time on the top line and/or second power-play unit.
Boudreau also confirmed Neuvirth will make his second NHL start in net. Neuvirth stopped 31 of 32 shots to win his debut against Tampa Bay.
The Caps coach also pointed out that the Thrashers are “playing their best hockey of the season” recently for the third time in as many press conferences — think he’s trying to sell that point to his players tonight? Atlanta is 3-1-1 in its past five games, and Ilya Kovalchuk looks more like the dynamic superforward he’s been the past couple of years.