Capital Ups and Downs: Week 3

Our weekly look at individual Washington Capitals' ups and downs:

Goalies Trend Notes
Jose Theodore A 2.12 GAA and .929 save percentage in four-plus periods for the week deserves better than an 0-0-1 mark and an injury.
Semyon Varlamov Everything about the second goal he allowed to Nashville - how quickly it came after the first, the goal itself - was troubling, but a 2-0-0/1.14/.949 week sure is encouraging. Varly has still yet to lose a regular season game in regulation in his career (7-0-1).
Defensemen
John Erskine Plus-two in just 6:39 of ice time for the week before heading to the IR with an upper body injury.
Mike Green - Points in three straight, including his first goal of the season, but the consistency is still not there yet.
Milan Jurcina Playing solid defense (plus-one on the week, plus-six for the season) and led the team in hits and blocked shots on Saturday night.
Shaone Morrisonn - Playing with a snarl. Or rather, he was playing with a snarl, before missing Saturday night's game with an undisclosed injury.
Brian Pothier For a puck-mover like Pothier to have more minor penalties (two) than points and shots on goal combined (one - a shot) in three games isn't a good thing.
Tom Poti The Caps killed all 12 power plays they faced in the week's three games, so good on Poti as the shorthanded ice time leader.
Jeff Schultz - If a coach has enough confidence in a guy to give him first-pairing minutes with Mike Green, why is he ever scratched? A couple of miscues in the Nashville game stand out, but so does a solid effort against San Jose
Tyler Sloan - Filling in admirably, but not doing much.
Forwards
Keith Aucoin Hasn't shown anything yet during this call-up other than a lack of desire to backcheck against San Jose's fourth line after being out of position on the forecheck.
Nicklas Backstrom Has gone five games without an even strength assist and has only one helper overall during that span.
Matt Bradley Still the only non-top six forward with a goal, he potted his second of the season against San Jose and played his 500th career NHL game on Saturday.
Chris Clark No points, just two shots on goal and a minus-two rating for a week perhaps highlighted by his questionable fight in the Jersey game.
Eric Fehr - Lousy backcheck on San Jose's goal, strong first period against Nashville followed up with... a cut in ice time?
Tomas Fleischmann - Placed on Long-Term Injured Reserve retroactive to the beginning of the season, which means the Caps didn't need to lose Chris Bourque on waivers when they did.
Boyd Gordon Another penalty in the Jersey game, followed by a couple of games in the press box (ostensibly with an injury) during which the penalty kill has been superb. Uh oh, Gordo?
Mike Knuble Six points (five at even strength) and a plus-five rating in three games playing with AO. Predictable, perhaps, but you've still gotta go out there and do it (right, Viktor?).
Brooks Laich Hasn't scored a goal since the second game of the season and doesn't have a point in any of his last four games (during which he has a minus-four rating, including minus-three last week).
Quintin Laing - Q's doing what Q does.
Brendan Morrison Three helpers in two games with Ovechkin and Knuble after a bad game with Laich and Semin. He was switched back to center that second pair of wingers in the third period against Nashville, so stay tuned.
Michael Nylander - Since every passing week is one week closer to the end of this whole mess, one could argue that Nylander's trending upwards. We won't, though.
Alex Ovechkin Ovechkin had as many points this week (six) as the Redskins did, and he scored the game-winners in both of the Caps' wins on the week. Four goals, two helpers, a plus-four rating and 26 shots on goal in three games without taking a single penalty. MVP-like week.
Alexander Semin Scored a goal and drew three penalties in the first period against San Jose, but was brutal in the week's other two games. The inconsistency is maddening.
David Steckel With the Caps' penalty kill in the top ten in the League, kudos go out to the top PK forward (by minutes), who won 68.5% of his 54 draws on the week. Stecks is still looking for that first point of the season, but at least he's contributing elsewhere.
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