A hockey team consists of six players, and the Washington Capitals are now capable of sending all six out in goalie pads.
The Capitals have added 34-year-old Wayne Stephenson, the discontented Philadelphia Flyer, to a netminding cast that already included Gary Inness, Jim Bedard, Dave Parro, Rollie Boutin and Bernie Wolfe.
Stephenson was obtained from the Flyers yesterday for a future draft choice and he will be introduced at Capital Centre this afternoon. He played 40 games for Philadelphia last season, posting a 3.35 goals-against average and a 20-10-5 won-lost-tied mark.
Stephenson was made available to the highest bidder after the Flyers obtained Phil Myre from Atlanta in a summer deal for Rick Lapointe and Blake Dunlop. Only Toronto, Boston and Washington expressed interest and the Capitals' bid was hardly a high one.
Stephenson reportedly signed a fat contract during the past season, so presumably the Flyers were as pleased to be rid of Stephenson as he was to leave.
Stephenson made it clear throughout the past season that he was weary of being the backup for Bernie Parent. Even after Parent suffered an eye injury, the Flyers were reluctant to give Stephenson a full vote of confidence, instead giving considerable ice time to Rick St. Croix, Pete Peeters and Robbie Moore.
Stephenson was ineffectual during the opening game of the Stanley Cup playoffs against Vancouver and replaced by the untried Moore, who became a darling of the Philadelphia fans for a week before the Flyers were wiped out in the quarterfinals by the New York Rangers.