Capital Ups and Downs: Week 13

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

Goalies Trend Notes
Michal Neuvirth http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png A 2-0-0/1.50/.953 week in which he beat the Vezina front-runner and the League leader in wins ain't too shabby. Also not too shabby? Throw out his stinker in Toronto and Neuvirth's NHL numbers are 3-1-0/2.02/.930.
Jose Theodore http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Do you really "just work here" if you don't, y'know, get any work?
Semyon Varlamov http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png There's no reason whatsoever to rush Varly back right now, so he'll continue to work his way back to 100% in practice.
Defensemen
Karl Alzner http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Solid and getting better.
John Erskine http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Seven hits (all in the Buffalo game), seven blocked shots and no penalties on the week are good numbers for a guy who wants to keep playing.
Mike Green http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png A goal and a plus-two rating in each game (and an assist against the Devils) aren't surprising lines for the Norris finalist, but leading the team in shorthanded ice time (an unblemished 4:33) against Jersey is certainly noteworthy.
Milan Jurcina http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Scratched against the Sabres and the lowest ice time of any blueliner on Saturday night (enough time to commit a penalty, though) aren't good signs for Juice.
Shaone Morrisonn http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Plus-three for the week, but down to sixth among the team's rearguards in shorthanded ice time, Mo's value is dwindling.
Brian Pothier http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Still on the shelf, and may have his work cut out for him in terms of getting back in the lineup upon his return.
Tom Poti http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Missed Saturday night's game with an undisclosed injury and doesn't look likely to play tonight.
Jeff Schultz http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png "Only" plus-one for the week, Schultz and Green are tied for second in the League in defenseman plus-minus.
Swingman
Tyler Sloan http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Scratched twice this week (and for six of the Caps' last seven games), Sloan is circling the NHL drain at present.
Forwards
Nicklas Backstrom http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Three goals, two assists and a plus-four rating are all impressive, but his eight shots on goal in the two games are perhaps even more encouraging.
Matt Bradley http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png The Caps are now 6-1-0 when Brads lights the lamp (after an 0-1-0) start, and his three game-winning goals is as many as Backstrom, Semin, Laich and Fehr combined.
Chris Clark http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png An assist against Buffalo pushed Clark's point total to 15 - as many as he had in the previous two seasons combined.
Eric Fehr http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Since scoring five goals in six games, Fehr has gone eight games without a goal, and his ice time is reflecting it.
Tomas Fleischmann http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Drew two big third period penalties against the Sabres, but still needs to shoot more - he only attempted one shot against the Devils.
Boyd Gordon http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Played in Hershey on Saturday night, so Washington can't be too far behind.
Mike Knuble http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Knuble has just one goal since November 7 (a span of nine games played), but they'll come... right?
Brooks Laich http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png December can't end soon enough for Laich, who has been "playing like [crap]," to the tune of one goal, four assists and a minus-3 rating in 11 games. Then again, he didn't have a goal in the last half-dozen games of November, either.
Quintin Laing http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Laing was eighth among forwards in shorthanded ice time in each of the week's two games. As soon as Gordo's a go, Q's gotta be a goner.
Brendan Morrison http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Score a goal like this (a game-winner, no less), get a green arrow.
Alex Ovechkin http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Ho-hum. A couple of three-point games this week (and three in a row overall for the second time this season), Ovechkin is scoring goals and points at the highest rates of his career. He's pretty good.
Alexander Semin http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Three assists, a plus-four rating and a new deal are all nice, but he has just one goal in his last six games. Hopefully with the contract situation behind him (for now), he can focus on being the truly dominant player we all know he can be.
David Steckel http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Won 67.6% of his face offs this week and led a penalty kill that went a perfect 7-for-7.
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