This morning, the Washington Capitals have announced that they have done a one-for-one defenseman swap with the Philadelphia Flyers; Radko Gudas in exchange for Matt Niskanen, Philadelphia will retain 30% of Gudas’ remaining salary.
We here at FiCP are sad to hear this news about Niskanen leaving the organization, but understand the business move by Brian MacLellan. This is most certainly a move to clear up salary cap space to re-sign certain players or shop the free agent market. Trading Niskanen has opened up $3,405,000 in cap space for the Caps to work with, making it possible to re-sign guys like Nicklas Backstrom and/or Braden Holtby.
Gudas plays a physical game from the blue line and has been a beating pulse on Philadelphia’s penalty kill for years. Him being a right-handed defenseman certainly puts him on the 3rd pair with either Christian Djoos or Jonas Siegenthaler.
A plus side in this trade is that Gudas only has one more year on his contract until he’s a UFA compared to Niskanen, who has two more years. Gudas’ contract will expire around the time Backstrom and Holtby’s contracts expire, so there’s that. Who knows, GMBM could flip real quick and dish out Gudas to a struggling defensive team for forward depth or picks. Until then, welcome to the Caps Radko!
The Washington Capitals announced on Tuesday that defenseman Michal Kempny underwent surgery to repair his left hamstring. Kempny has been out of commission since he sustained an injury on March 20. He will now be out for up to six months- well into the next season. Not only is this a painful injury from which to recover; it is a painful blow for the Capitals right before the playoffs. Continue reading “Michal Kempny Surgery: That Hurts”
The Capitals continued with their development camp on Wednesday. After an easy start on Tuesday, the coaches really put them all through the paces. It was Test Day for the forwards and defensemen on the Arlington Rink while the goalies worked on their skills over on the Capitals Rink. They all came together for more drills at the noon hour.
The prospects have been at it for four days now – running drills and learning all they can at Kettler. They have spent some quality time together on and off the ice. Today you could really tell that they have become friends and despite the grueling pace, they are having fun too.
Much of our focus today was on the defensemen. They ran some speed drills, inside shuffle drills, and shooting drills (Thanks Total Package Hockey for the verbiage.) We have to say, these guys need a bit more polish on their shooting as there were lots of pings at the bars!
This morning coach Dwayne Blais worked with the defense, providing some valuable one-on-one coaching tips. It was quite interesting to see him skating with the players as they ran their drills. He received high praise from Tyler Anderson’s dad Todd.
Forwards were running their own drills over on the Capital’s ice. There has been much attention on passing and puck handling, especially close to the net.
We have been impressed with the progress Jonas Siegenthaler is making. Each day he seems to have more control over himself on the ice. We see an improvement in stick handling and shooting form as well.
Additionally, Connor Hobbs, who we watched last year, is definitely showing some maturity on the ice since last year at this time. Again, some good control with his stick.
Whatever these guys take away from development camp – you can see touches of improvement in their skills and that they are having fun in the midst of a tough few days.
Join them and us at Kettler for the only scrimmage during camp. Puck drop is set for 10 am.