- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 24, 2009

On Monday, Bruce Boudreau felt his top players weren’t in sync during the first home preseason game of the season.

Seems 48 hours and a couple of practices did the trick. Alex Ovechkin, Mike Knuble, Nicklas Backstrom and Alexander Semin each had three points Wednesday night as the Washington Capitals blasted an outmanned Chicago Blackhawks squad 6-2 at Verizon Center.

“We watched the video and realized it was our mistake in the game against Buffalo,” Ovechkin said, referring to a 2-1 loss to the Sabres on Monday. “We moved the puck well and used our chances.”

Knuble potted the first two goals for the Caps - one caromed in off his leg, and the other involved a nifty deke and shot from the top of the circles. Ovechkin added the next two early in the second period before Backstrom slammed home a five-on-three tally.

Washington’s power play, which at times boasted those four players and Mike Green, converted three of six chances and could have added more.

“It is something where they can make plays without even looking, and it ends up tape-to-tape and in the back of the net,” captain Chris Clark said.

Semyon Varlamov stopped 26 of 28 shots, including several quality saves in the third period. Caps coach Bruce Boudreau hasn’t made a decision on his goaltending situation, but he did intimate that Varlamov likely has made the team, which probably would result in Michal Neuvirth returning to Hershey of the American Hockey League.

Defenseman Tyler Sloan helped his case for a roster spot with a goal and four blocked shots.

“I think all 10 of [the defensemen still in camp] are capable of playing in the NHL on a regular basis,” Boudreau said. “That’s what is going to make the decisions very difficult.”

• Corey Masisak can be reached at cmasisak@washingtontimes.com.

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