Our weekly look at individual Washington Capitals' ups and downs:
|Michal Neuvirth||Didn't get much help Saturday night... and needed an awful lot the way he played. Now an ugly 0-2-0/4.56/.845 on the (NHL) season.|
|Jose Theodore||He'll need to be better than 1-1-0/2.97/.872 in Varly's absences, whenever they are.
|Semyon Varlamov||Followed up a 26-save shutout - his second whitewashing in four starts - with a trip to the IR. On the plus side, the Caps have the luxury of being extra cautious with him... for now.
|John Erskine||The wear and tear is wearing and tearing Erskine down to the point where he seems nearly worn and torn out.
|Mike Green||The return of "Game Over" Green Friday night couldn't save a week full of turnovers and blown assignments... with Team Canada no doubt watching.|
|Milan Jurcina||After a minus-eight stretch in his previous six games, an even week (with a scratch thrown in) may qualify as a "good week," but the Caps need more out of Juice.|
|Shaone Morrisonn||Returned from injury with a zero-point, one shot on goal, minus-one week in which he averaged under 18 minutes of ice time. Sounds about right.
|Brian Pothier||On injured reserve with a rib injury. It's a shame, as he was coming off a three-goal, four-assist, plus-11 November.
|Tom Poti||Minus-three for the week (and that includes a plus-one in Tampa), and on the ice for six of the 12 goals the team allowed for the week.|
|Jeff Schultz||A plus-two week has him fourth in the League in plus/minus, and three four-block games speak further to the blueliner he's becoming.
|Tyler Sloan||Scratched twice, Sloan's NHL time is running out with Laing's pending return and perhaps a recall of Karl Alzner for the blueline.|
|Keith Aucoin||His most recent recall was short and relatively unproductive, which, fittingly, makes it the Keith Aucoin of recalls.
|Nicklas Backstrom||Two goals, two assists, plus-four and an epic OT shift against Carolina, the "wow" moments are coming with greater frequency with each passing week.
|Matt Bradley||A happy and healthy new baby gets an up arrow, especially when supplemented with a great interview.|
|Chris Clark||If the captain isn't contributing on the scoreboard, he's gotta be doing other things... like not letting his team put up three poor efforts in a row (including a pair against the League's two worst teams).
|Eric Fehr||A goal in Tampa followed by three point-less games, Fehr will look to go from scorching hot to cold to just plain consistent.
|Tomas Fleischmann||Another Cap forward looking for consistency, Flash posted a goal and three helpers this week and now has seven points in his last six games (after picking up just one in his previous six).|
|Alexandre Giroux||If it wasn't for Nylander's departure, Giroux being returned to Chocolatetown would qualify as great news. As it is, it's merely very good news.
|Boyd Gordon||In the past two months, Gordo has played 5:55 of hockey. Sigh.
|Mike Knuble||Off to a slow start since returning from the IR with a minus-three rating in two games. No doubt it takes some time to get back to game speed, but a finger injury shouldn't inhibit one's ability to crash the net.
|Brooks Laich||Like his new-found mentor Knuble, Laich had no points and was minus-three for the week... but he played all four games.
|Quintin Laing||Q's getting closer to returning, but when he comes back, who sits?
|Brendan Morrison||No points, three shots on goal and a celebration on a puck he shot wide... ouch.|
|Michael Nylander||Hasta la vista, baby.|
|Alex Ovechkin||Returned from suspension with three multi-point games (seven points overall) and 23 shots on goal in four games.|
|Mathieu Perreault||Food poisoning sidelined him in Buffalo and one point in his last ten games might sideline him a little more frequently going forward. Update: Perreault has been returned to Hershey.|
|Alexander Semin||Two goals, three assists, plus-four and 20 shots on goal in three games, a "passenger" in the fourth. That's our Sasha!|
|David Steckel||Followed up his first goal of the season with no points, a minus-two rating, two shots on goal and diminishing ice time (less than ten minutes per game for the week) in four games. The face offs are still there, though (67.4% for the week).|