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Stanley Cup Final

Poti back after missing 2 years

Friday, 01.18.2013 / 5:42 PM / News

Associated Press

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - Tom Poti is back after missing two years because of injuries.

The Washington Capitals defenseman was in the lineup for Saturday night's season opener against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Poti has battled physical issues, including a lingering groin injury. Poti recently passed a physical and scored one goal in two games during a conditioning stint at Hershey of the AHL.

"It feels good," Poti said after skating with his teammates Saturday morning. "It's nice to know that all the hard work I did over the last two years paid off. I'm just excited to be back with the guys and playing some games."

The 6-foot-3, 190-pound Poti had last appeared in the lineup for an NHL game with Washington at Tampa Bay on Jan. 12, 2011.

"He says he feels great," Washington coach Adam Oates said. "His groin feels good. He played a couple games and he's ready to try it."

For me, it's a great win for our hockey team and for a lot of people back in Columbus, especially our fans in particular … people who have been devoted to this organization, it's big.

— Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards on their win vs. the Penguins in Game 2, the franchise's first-ever Stanley Cup Playoff victory