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By Tammy Bruce
Topic - Tomáš Kundrátek
John Erskine hopes to play by the weekend. Tomas Kundratek could be close to returning. Soon the Washington Capitals could have just about a healthy blue line again, which could require some roster juggling.
A pair of concussions delayed Orlov's 2013 NHL debut, but his teammates know from last season what the young defenseman can do.
With Cameron Schilling joining Tomas Kundratek and Steve Oleksy in the lineup, half the Caps' defense corps was with Hershey when the NHL season began.
Hamrlik will find out at noon Wednesday whether he's going to another NHL team or staying with the Caps. The 38-year-old has played just four games this year, a healthy scratch for the past 11.
As Green nurses a lower-body injury that could keep him out Thursday night against the New Jersey Devils and possibly beyond that, the Caps know that as valuable as the 27-year-old is in all facets, they can't afford to lose him for too long.
Green, who appeared to suffer the injury late in Thursday night's victory at the Tampa Bay Lightning, skated just 15 minutes Saturday and was not on the ice for Sunday's morning skate at Madison Square Garden. Asked about a time frame for Green, coach Adam Oates said he didn't know but was hopeful the No. 1 defenseman would miss just the Rangers game.
Every game day in 2012, Jeff Schultz has gotten to the rink and learned he wasn't playing. Twelve straight games, no injury and the defenseman couldn't crack the Washington Capitals' lineup. The team even called up Tomas Kundratek to make his NHL debut rather than play Schultz.
It wasn't a penalty Sunday afternoon, but Alex Ovechkin is paying significantly for his hit on Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Zbynek Michalek.
Tomas Kundratek thought his career was going nowhere in the New York Rangers' organization. Not only was he in the American Hockey League with the Connecticut Whale, but he wasn't playing a whole lot, either.
Tomas Vokoun is a $1.5 million goaltender this season for the Washington Capitals. He was expected to stop the puck like he was getting paid $5 million.
"I was scared because I felt the knee right away; there was something wrong with [it]," said Kundratek, who had dealt with a knee injury before.
'It's torn, it's torn.'