Thursday, February 12, 2004

Seen and heard last night at RBC Center in Raleigh, N.C..:

GONCHAR SITS — Caps coach Glen Hanlon gave defenseman Sergei Gonchar one more day to recover from the separated left shoulder he sustained Jan. 23 in Florida. Gonchar is expected back in the lineup tonight in Nashville.

DOIG RETURNS TO THE SCENE — When the Caps were here two weeks ago, defenseman Jason Doig leveled Kevyn Adams with a check that badly injured the Hurricanes center’s knee and earned Doig a two-game suspension. But Hanlon wasn’t worried about Doig’s ability to handle abuse from the Carolina players or crowd.

“Jason can take care of himself, and [besides] we’re a pretty close group,” Hanlon said, meaning that Doig’s teammates will come to his defense in case of any rough stuff.

WHIPPING THE ‘CANES — Not only did the Caps come to RBC Center with a 4-0 record against the Hurricanes this season, Washington had lost just one of its last 13 contests against Carolina dating to Nov. 30, 2001. The loss during that 10-1-2 stretch came here by a 3-1 score a year ago tomorrow.

David Elfin

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