Coach Bruce Boudreau said that second-year center Marcus Johansson will be in the Capitals’ lineup against Tampa Bay after serving as a healthy scratch in the season opener. The precise ripple effect of who will be the odd man out tonight, though, Boudreau did not share.
In the last two practices, Johansson skated exclusively on the second line with Troy Brouwer and Alexander Semin so that’s likely where he’ll be tonight.
Mathieu Perreault, meanwhile, worked with the fourth line each of the past two days as center with Jeff Halpern and Matt Hendricks on the wings. Halpern played on the right wing regularly during the second half of last season in Montreal so it’s not new to the 35-year-old and perhaps that’s what serves as the fourth unit tonight against the Lightning. That would likely mean that Jay Beagle is the odd man out but we’ll have to wait until warmup at Verizon Center to see for certain.
“We do have a lot of options,” said Boudreau, who was asked if the possibilities made things easier for him. “It makes more work time because I go through all the options, but in the end quite frankly it makes you feel better because no matter how dire straits you’re in you come up with a lineup you think is going to work.”
--Alex Ovechkin was the only player not on the ice for the morning skate at KCI. Morning skates are always optional and according to a team spokesman, Ovechkin took the option.