In his pre-game comments to reporters at Madison Square Garden, Coach Bruce Boudreau said that right wing call up Andrew Gordon will be in the lineup against the New York Rangers but that he's not sure who will be out.
"We've got a few guys hurt and still under the weather, so we'll see after warm up," said Boudreau, who added that Tyler Sloan will not play today even though he is eligible to come off injured reserve. The team will need to place another player on injured reserve to open up a spot on the 23-man roster for Gordon in addition to Sloan and Jeff Schultz (broken thumb).
One player for certain to not be on the ice for the Caps tonight is defenseman Mike Green, who did not make the trip. When asked if Green was out with an illness or something more, Boudreau repeated that the two-time Norris Trophy candidate was not on the trip.
Goaltender Semyon Varlamov gets the nod in net against the Rangers and Boudreau said he may play a few games in a row, win or lose, but that he could change his mind. Henrik Lundqvist will be in goal for New York, which lost 3-1 in Columbus on Saturday night.
Boudreau also didn't mince words when asked what he told Alexander Semin after the winger received a five-minute major for cross checking and a game misconduct against the Avalanche last night. Semin was fined by the league for the play against Colorado's John-Michael Liles.
"Don't ever do it again. It was a selfish penalty," Boudreau said. "Liles hit him a couple of times but this is hockey not Tiddlywinks. You've got to suck that up and can't do what he did. I think at that point in time we had 8-0 in shots on goal, we had everything going our way and then you've got to kill a penalty for five minutes."
As for Alex Ovechkin, who had one of his stronger games of the season against the Avalanche although he didn't light up the scoreboard, Boudreau wants to see Washington's captain put forth the same type of performance on a routine basis.
"I thought it was a real positive sign but again it's one game," Boudreau said. "People say: 'Oh he was really good' but it's one game let's see the consistency let's do it game in and game out. Alex has got that capability and he's done it before and I hope yesterday was an enlightenment for him that he knows he played well and hopefully he'll continue to do that."