(Brett Affrunti/For The Washington Post)

Cover story: After four straight years of first- or second-round exits in the postseason, the four Capitals formerly known as the Young Guns say they have wasted enough time.

— Tarik El-Bashir’s On Hockey column: Brendan Shanahan and the NHL get serious about head injuries.

— Roster analysis: A look at each Capital and the projected lineup.

Complete 2011-12 schedule and TV information.

— League outlook: Katie Carrera’s team-by-team predictions and top storylines .

Keys to the Caps’ season: Captain Ovechkin, the power play and ego management.

— Karl Alzner, half of the Capitals’ shutdown duo on defense, will be online Friday after practice (between noon and 12:30 p.m.) to answer your questions about the upcoming season.

— After that, chat with the Caps beat writers at 1 p.m.

— Coming up later today, some of our favorite Caps bloggers give us their take on the year ahead.

— Tarik El-Bashir previews the season on Post Sports Live: