Capital Ups and Downs: Week 9

Our weekly look at individual Washington Capitals' ups and downs (with special thanks to winterion for the icon set):

Goalies Trend Notes
Jose Theodore http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Hasn't played a second since November 14 in Jersey; Gabby's got to get him back out there soon.
Semyon Varlamov http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Varly went 2-0-1/2.27/.919 with a shutout this week but was probably even better than those impressive numbers would indicate.
Defensemen
Karl Alzner http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png The up arrow might be a little generous, but think of it more as "Alzner's an upgrade over some of the Caps' regulars on the blueline" rather than a direct comment on his two-game performance (which has been solid if unspectacular).
John Carlson http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Held his own in his first NHL tour of duty.
John Erskine http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Averaged 18:44 of ice time per game this week, which is too much time for a marginal NHL defenseman and may be why he's been looking so slow of late. Or maybe it's just that he's so slow.
Mike Green http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Had the shift from hell in overtime on Monday night, but had nice assists on Monday and Wednesday. In other words, his offense isn't the problem... and never has been.
Milan Jurcina http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Getting big minutes on a struggling penalty kill; six blocks and four hits in two games.
Shaone Morrisonn http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Perhaps his absence is impacting his usual partner Green's play.
Brian Pothier http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Adding a bit of physicality to a game that's really coming around nicely.
Tom Poti http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Missed on the penalty kill.
Jeff Schultz http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Assist, plus-two rating for the week. Ho hum.
Swingman
Tyler Sloan http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Plus-two as a defenseman against the Sens, nothing as a forward against the Sabres.
Forwards
Nicklas Backstrom http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png As Ovechkin returns to form, so to does Backstrom (even if the numbers don't show it... yet). The big face-off win with 15.5 seconds left in Montreal and the shootout-deciding tally earn an up arrow.
Jay Beagle http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Scored his first NHL goal in Ottawa, but took a bad penalty in Montreal. Decent short-term fill-in.
Matt Bradley http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Not much to report - he must be in the "taking names" portion of "kicking ass and taking names."
Chris Clark http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Scored in Ottawa, but is struggling a bit out there.
Eric Fehr http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Three goals and an assist, a plus-three rating and ten shots on goal. Most importantly? His three goals totaled 63 feet from stick-to-goal line (and I'll take the under). Keep up the Knuble, Laich impression, Fehrsie.
Tomas Fleischmann http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png It's been a half-dozen games since Flash scored, and he's actually losing ice time (gasp!) to Fehr, among others.
Alexandre Giroux http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Look at the Corsi. Look at the rate at which he's taking penalties. Tell me he's not the worst player to don the red, white and blue so far this season.
Andrew Gordon http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png A quick cup o' coffee and see ya later.
Boyd Gordon http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png No news ain't good news.
Mike Knuble http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Skating again, which is a good sign (even if it is a finger injury).
Brooks Laich http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png An assist in Montreal, but only one shot on goal in three games for the week. Looking good, though, on a line with Morrison and Fehr.
Quintin Laing http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Did an in-game interview on Comcast Sportsnet despite having his jaw wired shut. Seriously.
Brendan Morrison http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Goal, assist, plus-three and 53.8% in the dot. In 50:02 of ice time for the week, he was on the ice for three goals for and none against.
Michael Nylander http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217753/circle.png Yawn.
Alex Ovechkin http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png A pair of goals, a pair of assists and a pair of penalized hits; AO's really got to be careful regarding that last number.
Mathieu Perreault http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Pointless in five and only two shots on goal and a 38.7 win percentage in the dot for the week.
Alexander Semin http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Caps offense scoring .74 fewer goals per game without Semin this season (but also giving up .68 fewer goals per game), and power play efficiency drops from 28.2% with Sasha to 10.7% without.
David Steckel http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png A 14/15 face-off performance against Buffalo saves the week for the snake-bitten Steckel, who is one of a half-dozen NHL forwards who have played 25 games this season without scoring a goal.
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