Scott Hannan and Tyler Sloan are the latest Capitals to succumb to the flu-like illness that has made its way around the locker room. Neither defenseman took part in practice at KCI this morning and Coach Bruce Boudreau said they are game-time decisions for tomorrow's game against the Bruins.
Boudreau said that Alexander Semin, who took shots by himself before practice began, will not travel to Boston. Semin could meet the team in Ottawa though, Boudreau added, if he is deemed ready by strength and conditioning coach Mark Nemish following a workout at KCI on Saturday. The right wing played in New York this past Sunday but has not practiced with the team this week because of a lower-body injury, the nature of which was not disclosed by the Capitals.
Here are the Capitals' lines at practice:
With both Hannan and Sloan missing, D.J. King skated as a defenseman to round out the drills. The rest of the Capitals defensemen, Mike Green, Karl Alzner, John Carlson, John Erskine and Tom Poti were all on the ice.
* According to a team source, Michal Neuvirth will start in net against Boston on Saturday.
It was a lengthy practice for the Capitals on a travel day, as they were on the ice for over an hour, but the team and Boudreau were glad to have three days of full sessions on the ice this week perhaps for the first time perhaps since training camp.
"We covered all of the areas that we wanted to cover," Boudreau said. "Obviously as a coach it's like a teacher you never feel like there's enough coaching or enough teaching to be able to get done. But I think we've covered everything and hopefully now everybody that's going to be playing has at least done what we want them to do."
Said Karl Alzner: "When you don't get the chance to work on things and change things, especially when you're in a spiral going down it's very important to just get back to basics -- have a couple battle practices, a couple fun practices and just get guys confident and comfortable out there."
I'm working on a story for tomorrow's paper about the more defense-oriented style that the Capitals used against Anaheim on Wednesday so keep an eye out for that.