- The Washington Times - Saturday, November 29, 2008

SEEN AND HEARD AT VERIZON CENTER

Of the thousands of fans cheering for the Washington Capitals on Friday night, maybe none anticipated the contest as much as Cade Helmer. The son of the newest member of the Caps, Cade was 3 years old the last time his dad, Bryan, played in an NHL game, which was in 2003-04. It was sure to be a long day for Cade, who had a pair of hockey games to play in the morning in Hershey, Pa., before coming to the District to watch his dad’s game with his mother and sister. …

Hundreds of Montreal fans showed up at Verizon Center. There were several “Ole” chants before the game, a staple of Bell Centre. Several Canadiens fans waved flags and held signs, but one in particular was the best sign of the season so far in this building. Five fans held up a large sign that read “That way Ryan” with a large red arrow pointing away from the Canadiens goal. Montreal defenseman Ryan O’Byrne accidentally shot the puck in his own net Monday against the New York Islanders.

BY THE NUMBERS

669 Games of NHL experience combined for the six Caps defensemen — fewer than three individual members of the Canadiens

1,000 NHL games worked by Caps head athletic trainer Greg Smith

Three Stars

Jose Theodore

After a rocky start, it felt like Caps fans are finally warming to their new netminder

Tomas Fleischmann

Made a great play for a goal and continued to create chances the rest of the night

Alex Ovechkin

A goal, seven shots and eight hits — just another night at the office

Today’s game

WASHINGTON CAPITALS at COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS

When: 7 p.m.

Where: Nationwide Arena, Columbus, Ohio TV/radio: CSN, AM-1500

Goalies: Capitals — Brent Johnson (5-3, 2.79) or Jose Theodore (9-4, 2.18). Blue Jackets - Steve Mason (4-2-1, 2.39) or Pascal Leclaire (4-4, 3.56).

Injuries: Capitals — Out: RW Chris Clark (forearm stress fracture), D Jeff Schultz (broken finger), D Brian Pothier (post-concussion symptoms); Doubtful: D Mike Green (bruised shoulder), D Tom Poti (strained groin), RW Alexander Semin (upper body), C Sergei Fedorov (sprained ankle), D John Erskine (undisclosed). Blue Jackets - Out: D Rostislav Klesla (ankle), RW Derek Dorsett (hand).

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