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The Noon Countdown: A Stable Stable

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Counting down the days to the 2015-16 season with a look at some unprecedented health on the blueline

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

4 - Number of days remaining until the 2015-16 season. But it's also...

...the number of man-games lost by the Caps' top-four defensemen last season. All four of those can be attributed to Brooks Orpik, who missed time in the middle of March with a lower-body injury. Karl Alzner, Matt Niskanen and John Carlson all played 82 games, the fifth-straight season in which Carlson and Alzner have appeared in every game and Niskanen's first full campaign.

That relative health was a huge reason why the Caps used only ten defensemen total last year (down from 14 the year before), and just two defensive call-ups, with Steve Oleksy appearing in one game and Cameron Schilling getting the call for four.