The Caps will have to go through a tougher division to make the playoffs and then to reach the East finals. They won the Southeast Division five of the past six seasons but went 8-10-2 against the Penguins, Rangers, Islanders, Devils, Flyers and Hurricanes this year.
In 16 games since Johansson began skating with Nicklas Backstrom and Alex Ovechkin going into Thursday night at the Ottawa Senators, the 22-year-old Swede had four goals and 12 assists.
The Caps recalled Philipp Grubauer to serve as Braden Holtby's backup Sunday night at the Philadelphia Flyers, and the training staff will keep an eye on Neuvirth.
Wolski broke his 11-game goal drought Tuesday, scoring at a crucial time in the Washington Capitals' victory over the Boston Bruins. But it was his all-around performance that kept the forward in the lineup for Thursday night's game against Florida.
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.
Mike Green reported progress Friday, but the injured Washington Capitals defenseman remained questionable for Saturday afternoon's game against the New Jersey Devils.
Aggressive forechecking resulted in goals. They stayed out of the penalty box, for the most part. Defenders deftly navigated the Panthers' forecheck. And goalie Braden Holtby jumpstarted the offense with a superb pass that resulted in a goal.
He changed up his lines again Wednesday in preparation for Thursday night's game against the Pittsburgh Penguins. This time Marcus Johansson joined Nicklas Backstrom and Troy Brouwer on one line, while Alex Ovechkin remained on right wing alongside Wojtek Wolski and Mike Ribeiro.
He got chances with the Washington Capitals, including last season, but now Aucoin isn't just a call-up. Claimed off waivers by the Islanders, he has three goals and an assist in six games this year and is starting to show the kind of offense he can provide at the NHL level if given the chance.