The Washington Capitals may have the ability to keep three goaltenders on their roster with the suspension of forward Evgeny Kuzetsov being off the books for the next few games. However, Capitals head coach Todd Reirden said keeping three goaltenders on the roster is not the plan, according to Washington Post’s Isabelle Khurshudyan.
The team intends to start Braden Holtby in net on Sunday, but the real question is who might be his backup. Last year’s backup, Pheonix Copley remains in the mix and isn’t waiver-exempt, which could be an issue if the team attempts to pass him through waivers. However, the team also has their goaltender-of-the future in Ilya Samsonov close to ready as well and the team may want to see what they have in him sooner than later.
Regardless, it looks like the team intends to make a decision on their goaltending situation before the start of the regular season.
- Sticking with the Capitals, the good news for the team is that defenseman Michal Kempny, who has been out with a hamstring injury, passed his conditioning skating test, but isn’t likely to be ready for the season opener and is currently listed as doubtful, according to The Athletic’s Tarik El-Bashir. While he still could miss some time as he tries to catch up after missing most of training camp, it’s also just as unlikely that the team will place the veteran defenseman on LTIR either. The team has options to replace him in the lineup, including Martin Fehervary, Jonas Siegenthaler and Christian Djoos.
- The Athletic’s Charlie O’Connor (subscription required) writes that it looks like Philadelphia Flyers rookie Joel Farabee may have wrapped up a roster spot with the Flyers after an impressive performance on the ice Thursday. While Farabee, who has been competing with fellow rookies Morgan Frost and German Rubtsov (as well as a host of veterans), hasn’t put up much offense on the scoreboard, he has performed impressively well as he was all over the ice and created many opportunities for the team. While it was his best game, nothing is written in stone. “You know what, if he’s not in the lineup that first game (of the regular season), it’ll be a surprise,” head coach Alain Vigneault said.
- The New York Islanders surprised many at the draft earlier this summer when they nabbed forward prospect Simon Holmstrom with the 23rd-overall pick with many believing he should have gone in the second or third round. Homstrom, however, remains in the Islanders camp and now may decide to stay in North America this season afterall with his performance in camp so far. The Athletic’s Arthur Staple (subscription required) writes that Holmstrom may stay in North America and play for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers as opposed to playing in the SHL. “That is what we’re preparing for, my wife and I,” Jonas Holmstrom, Simon’s father, said in a phone conversation on Thursday. “He can play in the AHL and in his mind, he’s willing to stay.”