- The Washington Times - Friday, March 7, 2003

Seen and heard last night at MCI Center:
CHARPENTIER HURT Backup goalie Sebastien Charpentier stopped a shot by Dainius Zubrus in practice the other day and hasn't been the same since. One of his hands is badly bruised to the point he couldn't sign an autograph if asked.
Maxime Ouellet, the 21-year-old obtained in the Adam Oates deal with Philadelphia last March, was called up to back up Olie Kolzig. Ouellet is showing in Portland, Maine, this season that his billing as a prospective star was more than just talk. He is 21-12-5 with the Pirates with a 2.21 goals-against average and a save percentage of .935. His seven shutouts lead the American Hockey League.
"We feel like we have a really good team and could do something special" in the playoffs, Ouellet said. Being a good company man, he sidestepped questions about wanting to be with the Caps next season.
"First, I want to have a good season in Portland this year, and so far it's going well, and the next step is the playoffs," he said. "Obviously, you want to make a big step in the playoffs and then once that's done … it's not up to me to make that decision, but obviously I want to be in the NHL. My long-term goal is to play in the NHL."
Charpentier is listed as day-to-day and may be the backup tomorrow in Boston. He will be an unrestricted free agent in July if the Caps don't re-sign him. Ouellet will be a restricted free agent.
Coach Bruce Cassidy said left wing Kip Miller, sidelined with a bruised hand, skated yesterday and felt a little better. He said Miller had been upgraded to day-to-day and may be ready to face the Bruins.
Dave Fay

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