Coach Bruce Boudreau said that the Capitals assigned D.J. King to the Hershey Bears in an attempt to get the tough-guy forward some playing time.
General Manager George McPhee declined to comment on the decision to send King to the AHL through team spokesman Sergey Kocharov.
“He just needs to play, we haven’t had the opportunity to play him a lot,” Boudreau explained. “For D.J. it’s just about getting ice time. He’s done everything we’ve asked him to do and he’s a great teammate.”
Unlike last week, when King’s agent approached the Capitals and asked that he be put on waivers in order to see if another team would pick up the enforcer, this was a decision that the winger did not have a hand in, according to Boudreau.
“No, we just thought that’s what he needed to do,” Boudreau said. “So we told him [Sunday] and that’s what he’s doing.”
With King’s departure the Capitals have 22 players on the active roster, which would leave room for whenever Jay Beagle, who is expected to skate with the team Tuesday, is able to return from a concussion and come off injured reserve.
But when asked if sending King down was related to Beagle’s improving condition, Boudreau said no.
Beagle’s “not ready to come back this week at all,” Boudreau said. “So it has no bearing [on sending King to Hershey].”