Jeff Rimer and Craig Laughlin will form the Washington Capitals' new television announcing team on WDCA-TV-20 and Home Team Sports.

Rimer, who had been host of the pregame "Capitals Report" on HTS, becomes the hockey club's play-by-play caller. Laughlin, a 1982-88 Capitals player, will be the color analyst. Both are natives of Toronto.

Mike Fornes and Al Koken, who held the jobs six seasons, were notified in February they would not be renewed.

"We are looking for more enthusiasm on the telecasts," said Lew Strudler, Capitals' marketing director. "For some years, we have been hoping to find a former player to take over the color job and we think Craig Laughlin is the man for it."

HTS still seeks someone to fill Rimer's pregame role.

Twenty-one Caps games will be on Channel 20 and another 32 are set for HTS. . . .

The Minnesota North Stars reacquired center Bobby Smith, 32, from the Montreal Canadiens for a 1992 fourth-round draft choice. Smith, the first overall pick in the 1978 amateur draft, won the Calder Trophy as the NHL's top rookie and centered the North Stars' top line in 1981, when they advanced to the Stanley Cup finals; in 1981-82 he had 43 goals and 71 assists for 114 points, still a team record. They dealt him to Montreal in 1983.