Here are some quick Caps notes as they get ready to face the Florida Panthers at the Verizon Center on Tuesday night:
-Chris Bourque, who played up with the Caps on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday was down in Hershey this Sunday evening and had an assist in a Bears 3-2 win over Norfolk. Could this mean that one of the Caps injured forwards (currently Alexander Semin and Sergei Fedorov) could be back on Tuesday night? I’m not sure but I’ll be watching for practice updates tomorrow. I think Semin is closer to returning than Fedorov. Of course the organization could have just wanted Bourque to get some more ice time so they may have just sent him down for a couple of days and recall him Tuesday morning should a forward be needed. Or they could be calling up a different forward (Graham Mink? Oskar Osala?) for Tuesday should one be needed. With the Caps so close to the salary cap every dollar counts these days and the salary cap figures do adjust on a daily basis so by sending down Bourque he got playing time and money was saved.
-Caps goalie of the future, Simeon Varlamov, got the win tonight and is now 9-2 with a .906 save percentage. Hershey is on fire and is now 18-5-0-1 for 37 points, five points better than any other AHL team. Kudos to Coach Bob Woods and the players for a great start to this season.
-The Florida Panthers come to town on Tuesday with a red hot goalie in Craig Anderson. Anderson made 37 saves today in blanking the New York Rangers and in his last three games has stopped 104 of 108 shots. Anderson leads the NHL in save percentage with a .948 rate. You can bet that Caps Coach Bruce Boudreau will be preaching going to the net and creating traffic in front of the goalie in practice on Monday.