The Capitals won’t get a chance to face their former first-round draft pick in net tonight as Colorado will start veteran Jean-Sebastien Giguere.
Semyon Varlamov, whom the Capitals traded to Colorado in July, will not play because of a “minor back injury,” according to Avalanche Coach Joe Sacco. In his most recent outing, Varlamov allowed five goals on 34 shots in a 5-4 loss to San Jose.
“It happened last game against San Jose – it flared up during the game last game,” Sacco said about Varlamov’s injury. “He’s available to back up tonight, but we’re going to go with Giggy.”
In eight appearances against the Capitals during his career, Giguere is 4-3-1 with a .928 goals-against average and a 2.29 save percentage. But it’s also worth noting that several Capitals have had success against him – Alex Ovechkin has recorded seven goals in five games against Giguere, Alexander Semin has three goals in two games and Mike Knuble has six in seven outings.
Varlamov did not mention an injury when he expressed his disappointment in not being able to face his former team. The 23-year-old is enjoying his new start with the Avalanche and likes Denver. Varlamov did have a chance to catch up with some of the Capitals when he and countrymen Ovechkin, Semin, Dmitry Orlov and the team’s director of media relations Sergey Kocharov went out for dinner Friday night.
“Little bit [disappointed], but I will be backup today and I am always ready to go on the ice and play my game,” Varlamov said. “I start my season better but right now I’m a little bit struggling. My statistics not that well and I’m not that happy about my statistic and my game. But NHL season is very long season and you always have time to change your game. Just keep working, try to play well.”