HARTFORD, DEC. 9 -- Defenseman Rod Langway, the ailing captain of the Washington Capitals, was released today from George Washington University Hospital in Washington.

Langway, hospitalized Dec. 2 with a ruptured disk in his back, will undergo rehabilitation at home while continuing to receive medication.

Langway rode a stationary bicycle for 20 minutes today and reported a lessening of the pain in his lower back. He is scheduled for light skating Monday and Tuesday, after which his condition will be reevaluated.

Although the club refused to speculate on Langway's return to the ice, it is unlikely he will be able to play before January.

Langway was injured in the first period against Boston Nov. 25. Tonight's game against Hartford was the seventh he has missed.

Defenseman Greg Smith, struck in the throat by the stick of Edmonton's Norm Lacombe on Dec. 1, is expected to return to the lineup Saturday, when the Capitals entertain Chicago.

Left wing David Jensen remains in limbo after returning from Binghamton Monday. He has not practiced with the Capitals in the interim. General Manager David Poile, who has been attending the NHL meetings in Palm Beach, Fla., this week, is expected to make a decision on Jensen's future Thursday.

In other games last night, Pittsburgh defeated Calgary, 5-2; Montreal and the New York Rangers tied, 2-2; New Jersey beat Los Angeles, 2-1, and St. Louis tied Detroit, 4-4.