The Washington Capitals have joined a growing list of teams scratching players on the basis of trade protection. Pierre LeBrun of TSN reports that Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov will sit out of tonight’s game against the Anaheim Ducks for that exact reason. The team followed up shortly after indicating that Garnet Hathaway will also be left out of the lineup.
As the long-time Metropolitan heavyweight looks to climb back into the playoffs, the Capitals’ brass seems to be doing their due diligence this upcoming trade deadline. As things currently sit, the Capitals are two points out of the last wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. However, unlike the other teams ahead of them in the standings, the Capitals are trending in the wrong direction. Losers of their last five games, the Capitals’ path to the playoffs is becoming increasingly narrow as each day passes. With four games remaining until the trade deadline, this next stretch of games will determine if they buy, sell, or do a little bit of both this deadline.
In the final year of a 6-year, $30.6MM contract signed prior to the 2017-18 NHL season, Orlov has become a familiar name on the Capitals’ back end. Scoring a career-high 35 points during the 2021-22 season, Orlov has become a valuable asset. Carrying a cap hit of $5.1MM this season, some cap-conscious teams may have to do some maneuvering to get Orlov on the roster. With 13 players on the Capitals’ roster headed towards unrestricted free agency this summer, they are likely taking their time to see who has a long-term fit on their roster.
Joining Orlov as a scratch, Hathaway also finds himself likely headed out of the nation’s Capital in a few days. One of many forwards with an expiring contract on the team, Hathaway is an extremely flexible trade candidate. Only carrying a cap hit of $1.5MM, many teams could find a spot for him in their bottom six. Much like Orlov, Hathaway achieved a career-high in points last season, scoring 26 points in 76 games for the Capitals. Having already signed forwards Dylan Strome and Sonny Milano to extensions past next season, the Capitals are looking to recoup whatever assets they can on players not penciled into their future.
Tough, but it’s for the better. Gonna miss those guys.
Hmmm, wonder if anything is imminent. Is Edmonton the destination? Seems like the Oilers could use both guys.
Garnet is a good pickup for a playoff push!
Hopefully this is just the beginning. It’s over with this current team. Too many guys over 30, they need a younger core group of players to put around Ovechkin so he can get the most out of however many years he has left and maybe even win another championship. It’s not gonna happen with this team as it is now. Make these trades now while there’s still value to trade.
I hope this is a sign that MacLellan has finally accepted the reality of this team’s situation. Time to make some deals and start building the next championship caliber team in Washington.
The Caps should have started their rebuild two years ago. But Leonsis was too stubborn, and only cared about Ovi’s goal chase, and selling out Cap One.
Oh well. Better late, than never
Pretty much. Fortunately, there’s still plenty of trade value on this club. I’d even deal Carlson. Anyone not named Wilson, Ovechkin, and Kuemper should be available and see what kind of deals materialize. Plenty of value here still.
Looks like both players are going to Boston in exchange for Craig Smith and three picks; 2023 1st, 2024 3rd and 2025 2nd.