When the news of another injury to Caps defenseman Michal Kempny broke recently, the Caps figured to be in pursuit of a replacement once the NHL's free agent emporium opened for business on Friday. Even with Kempny being out for 6-8 months, Washington is still fairly flush on the left side of its blueline depth chart, but its right side needed some augmentation.
Shortly after the opening of the NHL's shopping season for unrestricted free agents, the Capitals kicked off the process of tinkering with their roster with a significant announcement on Friday afternoon. The Caps have agreed to terms on a one-year contract for $1.5 million with veteran goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, whose previous contract was bought out by the New York Rangers last week. The announcement comes a day after the 15th anniversary of Lundqvist's NHL debut with the Rangers, on Oct. 8, 2005 against the Devils in New Jersey.
Some years ago, the NHL shifted its draft format, letting the first round stand alone in prime time - usually on a Friday night - with rounds 2-7 seven unfolding in the following Saturday morning and into the early afternoon.
On Tuesday night, Washington dealt away a third-round pick (No. 80 overall) to move up two spots (from 24 to 22) in the first round of the 2020 NHL Draft. With that selection, the Caps chose center Hendrix Lapierre from Chicoutimi of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Ross Mahoney has seen some things. Over the course of a quarter of a century as a scout and scouting director in the NHL, the Capitals' assistant general manager has traveled the globe many times over in search of budding hockey talent. But the 2020 NHL Draft - the first draft ever held in the month of October - is a new one for Mahoney and the Washington scouting staff, and for each of the other 30 NHL clubs as well.
The Caps made news on Tuesday morning when senior vice president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced the hiring of Peter Laviolette as the 19th coach in the franchise's history, and the first one ever hired in the month of September. Laviolette, who won the Stanley Cup as head coach of the 2005-06 Carolina Hurricanes, also becomes the first of those 19 Caps coaches to take the job in the District with a Cup title on his résumé.
Three days after a disappointing first-round Stanley Cup Playoff exit in five games at the hands of the New York Islanders, the Capitals announced on Sunday morning that they have relieved Todd Reirden of his head coaching duties. Caps GM Brian MacLellan made the announcement after a Sunday morning meeting with Reirden.
A season that began with comeback win and a great deal of hope in St. Louis some ten and a half months ago ended in ashes in Toronto on Thursday night when the Caps came up empty in an elimination situation in Game 5 against the New York Islanders. Playing their second must-win game in three nights, the Caps couldn't find any kind of spark and they bowed out meekly in a 4-0 loss.
Do It Again - Despite a rocky start to Tuesday's Game 4, the Caps rallied to win 3-2, forcing a Game 5 tonight in which they'll still have their backs to the proverbial wall. After a dismal first 10 minutes on Tuesday, the Caps settled down and settled in, and they finished the game with their best 50-minute stretch of the series to date.