The Caps are about to go on the ice here at the St. Pete Times Forum. Bruce Boudreau said Tom Poti and Donald Brashear are out tonight against Tampa Bay. He said he wants Poti to be ready for the playoffs next week, so it is a good bet he won’t play Saturday either.
When asked if he thought Brashear and Boyd Gordon would be ready for Game 1, Boudreau said he can’t answer that yet.
Boudreau said to expect a line shakeup tonight — and on Saturday, for that matter. This is a bit of strategic gamesmanship from the Caps coach. He said he knows what the lines will look like in Game 1 right now, but he wants to make it a little tougher for their first-round opponent to decipher what those units might be.
Speaking of the first-round opponent, the Caps could know by 11 p.m. tonight who that foe will be. If Montreal wins, the N.Y. Rangers lose and Pittsburgh snares at least point, then the Canadiens would be locked into the No. 7 seed. This is predicated on the Caps getting at least one point tonight or the Devils losing against Ottawa for Washington to lock up the second spot. So it might be Montreal after tonight, or we might not know until the weekend.
UPDATE: Here are what the lines should look like toinght: