Capital Ups and Downs: Week 12

WASHINGTON DC - DECEMBER 23: Michal Neuvirth #30 of the Washington Capitals makes a save against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Verizon Center on December 23 2010 in Washington DC. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

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

Goalies Trend Notes
Michal Neuvirth http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Stifled the lowly Devils and was strong against the Pens (in his fourth-straight start before sitting out Carolina) en route to a 1-0-1/1.44/.952 week.
Semyon Varlamov http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Stopped 33 of the 35 shots he faced in Sunday night's win, looking both calm and sharp the entire way. Perhaps keeping his minutes down will be good for everyone involved.
Defensemen
Karl Alzner http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png On the ice for five Caps' goals and one opposition tally (the Chris Kunitz goal on Thursday night) for a three-game, plus-four week that featured 6:31 of scoreless penalty-killing. Actually, that's not exactly accurate - the Caps scored a shorty with King Karl on the ice against the Pens.
John Carlson http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png The Caps scored 10 goals this week and Carlson was on the ice for six of them, and was only out for two goals by the bad guys (though neither came during his 8:16 of shorthanded time).
John Erskine http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Another big penalty-kill performer, with 5:44 of gettin' the job done in an otherwise nondescript three-game stretch.
Mike Green http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Broke a 14-game goal-less drought against the Pens, but gets the up arrow for his superb defensive play over the 89:31 of ice time he had in the three games, which included five blocked shots and eight hits against Pittsburgh, and another four blocks against the 'Canes.
Scott Hannan http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Seems to have turned the corner a bit at even-strength, and killed 9:08 of shorthanded time over the past two games. That's why he was brought to D.C.
Tom Poti http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Hurt. Again. But at least it's not his man-area, right?
Jeff Schultz http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Could Sarge be a go for the Winter Classic?
Tyler Sloan http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Played his first game in more than three weeks on Sunday and... well, let's chalk it up to rust.
Forwards
Nicklas Backstrom http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Had a helper against the Pens, but was also on the ice for three of the five goals the Caps allowed, and hasn't scored a goal in his last dozen games (registering just five assists along the way).
Jay Beagle http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Scored his first goal of the season against the Devils, which makes sense, as that must have felt like just another AHL game for Beags.
Matt Bradley http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Broke a finger against Jersey, had surgery, and is out 2-4 weeks. Shame he'll miss the Classic.
Jason Chimera http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Ended a 14-game goal-less spell on Tuesday night. Next up? Maybe that 17-game assist-less streak. Or doing something about his minus-9 December.
Eric Fehr http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Played only the Pittsburgh game this week, and will need to get more consistent action if he's going to turn around his disappointing-to-date season.
Andrew Gordon http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png The Andrew Gordon Hat Trick? Goal, assist, kiss-a-teammate. Just 11:27 of total ice time in the week's last two games give a pretty strong indication of how long he's likely to be in Washington. But he'll be back.
Boyd Gordon http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png Should be close to returning to the lineup.
Matt Hendricks http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Only played against the 'Canes, but had two highlights for the week: challenging Tim Gleason after the latter's hit on Mathieu Perreault and frightening HBO viewers.
Marcus Johansson http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217737/down.png Had more assists this week (one) than shots on goal (zero), and won just 37.5% of his faceoffs... which actually raised his win percentage for the season. We need more, MoJo.
D.J. King http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217725/cross.png If forced to choose whom I'd like to see get played more by the Caps between D.J. King and DJ Pauly D, I'm choosing the latter every time.
Mike Knuble http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png With goals in each of the week's first two games, including the enormous shorthanded marker against the Pens, Knuble has five goals in his last dozen games. He's certainly doing his part.
Brooks Laich http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png No one's going to confuse Laich with Nick Backstrom, but 21 is riding a four-game assist streak, the most impressive of which came on the Knuble shorty.
Alex Ovechkin http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png When the puck dropped against the Pens, it seemed to snap Ovechkin out of his season-long slumber. He fired eight shots on goal in that one, landed five hits (including a monster on Evgeni Malkin early) and added a shootout score before moving on to Carolina and notching the game-winning goal and an assist. It's too early to say "he's back," but, well, he sorta is.
Mathieu Perreault http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Didn't do much in the romp over the Devils and was pretty awful against Pittsburgh, but then scored against the 'Canes before getting his face blown up. Hopefully the "getting his face blown up" stuff remains the most inconsistent part of his game.
Alexander Semin http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217757/dash.png Made one of the prettier passes we've seen in a while on that Perreault goal, but would you believe that he hasn't scored a goal yet in December? That's ten games without one after a November with a dozen lamps lit. Such is life with Sasha.
David Steckel http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/217733/up.png Steckel scored and added an assist in the same week. That's something. So was 7:39 of perfect penalty-killing and 73.8% in the dot.

Facebook_16 Twitter_16

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Japers' Rink

You must be a member of Japers' Rink to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Japers' Rink. You should read them.

Join Japers' Rink

You must be a member of Japers' Rink to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Japers' Rink. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker