Although the Capitals find themselves comfortably in a playoff spot, goaltending has been an issue for them at times this season. Both Vitek Vanecek and Ilya Samsonov have had chances at starting and at other times, they’ve platooned when both are healthy. Speaking with J.J. Regan of NBC Sports Washington, head coach Peter Laviolette indicated that he’d like to give Vanecek a chance to run with the number one job when he returns from his upper-body injury with the hope of solidifying their netminding before the playoffs. While Washington has very limited cap space to work with, it wouldn’t be surprising to see them keep tabs on the goalie market for the time being in case Vanecek isn’t able to play with consistency which was an issue for him in the first half of the season.
More from the around the NHL:
- Penguins assistant coach Todd Rierden is out indefinitely after suffering a knee injury when he slipped on ice while shoveling during the All-Star break, notes Johnny McGonigal of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He is set to undergo surgery on Monday. Matt Cullen, who works in Pittsburgh’s player development department, will join up with the team on Monday to help with their power play.
- Flyers center Derick Brassard missed today’s game due to soreness, relays Giana Han of the Philadelphia Inquirer (Twitter link). The veteran has dealt with lingering hip issues all season long that has caused him to miss time on three separate occasions. Head coach Mike Yeo indicated that the decision to give him the game off was so that he wouldn’t have to “go through all that” again so it appears they’re taking some precautions to avoid another extended absence. When healthy, Brassard has done well this season with 11 points in 20 games.
- Blues defenseman Marco Scandella has a lower-body injury that will keep him out either day-to-day or week-to-week, notes team reporter Chris Pinkert. The injury was sustained on Thursday against New Jersey. Scandella had played in every game this season although his 17:29 ATOI is the lowest of any of his full seasons. With that strange of a designation, it seems reasonable to suggest that he’ll miss at least a couple of games.