Gary Smith, the 6 foot -4 gioaltender who lost 35 pounds following the Capitals' rigorous conditioning program will make his first start for Washington tonight against the Cleveland Barons at Richfield Coliseum.

Smith, signed as a free agent after playing out his option at Minnesota is fown to 203 pounds, a figure he says he last hit when he was 15 years old. Smith is now 33 and some people claim he is over the hill, but he was brillant Monday right in an exhibition at Quebec City.

Coach Tom McVie chose Bernie Wolfe to start last nights season opener against Pittsburgh, but he said, "Both of them deserve it. One thisn I'm not worried about is our goaltending . Those two guys have been outstanding".

Lye Stieg makes his Washington debut, too as the unassisted play-by-play man for the telecast on WDCA TV-20 at 8 p.m. If Steig can keep all the G. Smiths untangled, he should be eligible for a prize - possibly a color man for the next telecast. Besides Gary. Washington boast defenseman Gord Smith, whild Cleveland has defenseman Grek Smith They are unrelated.

The Capitals lost all five meeting with the Barons last season, including a 5-1 setback at Capital Centre in the last of those uncelebrated guaranteed win nights.