The Capitals’ practice in New York City today yielded one bit of news.
According to CSNWashington.com’s Chuck Gormley, coach Dale Hunter had forward Alexander Semin skating on the fourth line alongside Keith Aucoin and Mike Knuble. Hunter has been a stickler for accountability since becoming the Caps coach and after seeing Semin take two bad penalties in yesterday’s Game 1 loss to New York, Semin is apparently paying the price with a demotion.
Moving up in the world thanks to Semin being moved down was Joel Ward who jumps to the third line while the second line features Nicklas Backstrom centering Marcus Johansson and Jason Chimera. The top line of Brooks Laich centering Alex Ovechkin and Troy Brouwer remained unchanged.
Having Semin come up small like that in Game 1 was a tough blow for the Capitals and they’ll be banking on him returning to the form he showed in the first round where he was an all-around threat.