Christian Djoos has been a healthy scratch the last few games in favor of Jakub Jerabek, which I think has been totally absurd. For me, it proves that Trotz is missing the boat.
Jerabek is a solid D man but he isn’t anything special and is not a difference maker at all. Djoos has a +10 rating and 14 points this year,which is really good if you think about him being a rookie and all.
For me, Jerabek hasn’t seemed to do much in the four games he has been in. He hits and blocks shots but any D man can do that. I don’t think that really is what the Caps need right now. Djoos provides a nice offensive spark from the D line as well and can play on the PP.
Bottom line: if the Capitals are serious about getting some distance from the Penguins and Flyers in this tight Metro race, and they want a one seed for the playoffs; I Truly think Djoos needs to be playing. Also, once the playoffs come around, who are you going to really want in the lineup? Do you want a young guy who could spark the team at any point during the playoffs or just an average D man that hasn’t done much for us?
The Washington Capitals are 1-5-0 so far in the preseason with one game left to play in St. Louis before the regular season starts. If you think that record is rattling, the Caps have only scored 8 goals out of those 6 games. Not a good sign for the days to come.
Caps Reporter Tarik El-Bashir tweeted this possible lineup for the final game of the preseason:
Devante Smith-Pelley and Alex Chiasson on the wings for Jay Beagle is not a bad move. Both have proved to be solid with consistent play. This game in St. Louis will hopefully prove that these two belong on an NHL team. Smith-Pelley was bought out by New Jersey and was signed by Washington in the offseason. Chiasson, who played for Ottawa last season, was signed to a professional tryout agreement walking into the preseason and has not disappointed since arriving.
Aaron Ness and Taylor Chorney have proven their skill so far this preseason. Have they outshined the other defenseman in competition? In my opinion, no. Ness/Chorney/Bowey/Djoos is a difficult bunch to choose from. If it were me, keep Bowey and Chorney on the third pairing. Keep Djoos scratched and send Ness to Hershey to dominate with Hershey.
Where is Nathan Walker? Where is Christian Djoos? Where is Madison Bowey? What about Tyler Graovac? The competition is still thick with the four vacant roster openings on the Caps. The organization is just weighing their chances and who’s the right fit right now. Doesn’t mean players can’t still be moved between Washington and Hershey.
Regardless, I think that most of these players will remain with the Caps going into the regular season and rotate in as scratches until someone proves to be inconsistent. The opening rosters are due this Tuesday for the season opener no later than 5pm.