Defending champion Capitals have pretty much no camp competition

Defending champion Capitals have pretty much no camp competition

ARLINGTON, Va. AP — whereas smiles are in high deliver at training camp for the defending Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitals, launch jobs are not.

Returning 18 of 20 the gamers who wearing their Cup-clinching victory, the Capitals have very nearly no competition for roster spots going into the average season. Barring accidents, the front workplace and coaching team of workers could pencil in doubtless 95 percent of the hole nighttime roster earlier than any person hits the ice.

4da1a46ec20cf93ee5c846a51e04f0ed.”surely, i do know our roster blooming well,” standard manager Brian MacLellan spoke of Friday. “it be still going to be aggressive on the fourth line. we will are attempting to find a fourth line that we would like to add a little bit greater ability, a bit extra pace, and what we will do on the penalty kill.”

Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Braden Holtby and the relaxation of Washington’s championship core last intact leaves the likes of Travis Boyd and rookies Nic Dowd and Sergei Shumakov competing for fourth-line roles. MacLellan figures there will also be a contest between veteran Brooks Orpik and younger defensemen Christian Djoos and Madison Bowey for taking part in time on the third pairing.

it really is a far cry from a year in the past when the Capitals misplaced a handful of key contributors and were looking for someone — anybody — to step up and fill voids. these voids do not exist this year considering most effective fourth-line center Jay Beagle and backup goaltender Philipp Grubauer don’t seem to be round.

4da1a46ec20cf93ee5c846a51e04f0ed,You certainly not recognize what’s going to turn up the following day because it’s hockey stuff,” Ovechkin mentioned. “it be tough when your pals and when a few of your teammates left, peculiarly should you recall the Cup, but there’s a revenue cap. … it be difficult to maintain.”

It wasn’t complicated this time. The Capitals signed pending free agent defenseman John Carlson earlier than he hit the market and re-signed playoff hero Devante Smith-Pelly and deadline pickup Michal Kempny. Their low turnover is comparable to what the Pittsburgh Penguins had when they repeated as Cup champions.

Todd Reirden replacing Barry Trotz as teach after four years as his properly assistant is the largest exchange. Reirden knows the roster as well as any individual and may not misinform players about alternatives, but he’s attempting to set them as much as compete for spots that might come inaugurate on account of injuries.

4da1a46ec20cf93ee5c846a51e04f0ed,or not it’s a different variety of competition,” Reirden noted. “You cannot predict it, however the entire gamers that are in camp, they know that there’s competition. And even if it really is competitors for Day some of the season, Day 21 or 121 that there’s an opportunity for them to be part of a crew this is the defending Stanley Cup champs.”

Dowd noticed a chance to win a full-time job with the defending champions and jumped at the opportunity. The 28-yr-ancient who has performed for the Kings and Canucks desires to reveal he can convey everything Beagle did and provide some greater offense. he’s making an attempt no longer to wonder daily in camp about the place he stands in making the team.

4da1a46ec20cf93ee5c846a51e04f0ed,I spent my first two to a few years of professional hockey going into practicing camp making an attempt to split the atom and trying to get within the minds of the coaches and, ‘Why am I here, why i’m there within the lineup, why am I this neighborhood, why am I in that community?'” Dowd observed. “loads of the time it makes no change where you sit down in practices and all that, and it simply puts extra stress on yourself in caring about that.”

Most avid gamers at Capitals camp would not have an awful lot to be concerned about because they comprehend where they’ll be in October when the season begins. it’s very nearly definite Pheonix Copley is Holtby’s backup with prospect Ilya Samsonov within the American Hockey League with Hershey, and neither Bowey nor Djoos could be sent to the minors.

Boyd, who performed one playoff online game all through the Cup run, cannot be certain and is aware of he is fighting for a job.

4da1a46ec20cf93ee5c846a51e04f0ed.”I didn’t wish to walk in right here and suppose that i’m on the crew,” Boyd stated. “I don’t feel i’m. I actually believe that certainly there is some guys right here that are respectable avid gamers too, attempting to benefit ahold of I wager the one or two spots that are open.”

NOTES: Carlson and core Lars Eller are nursing minor reduce-body accidents that brought about them to omit the first day of on-ice work. … Reirden says the Capitals will take handiest a handful of veteran gamers to Boston for the preseason opener Sunday because the Bruins may have a huge chunk of their group in China for exhibition games there.