WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 02: Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals warms up before a game against the New York Rangers in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Verizon Center on May 2, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

Is this Capitals’ team mentally tougher than past versions?


Losing in overtime is tough, but bouncing back from a lengthy overtime loss might be even harder. The Capitals played for 114:41 fruitless minutes on Wednesday. Now they have until Saturday to mull what went wrong before they have a chance at redemption.

This could mark a turning point in the series, but Washington’s Karl Alzner thinks they have what it takes to fight back.

“It is good for our heads to know we were in the exact same position against a very, very good team and we managed to climb out of that,” Alzner said, referring to the fact that Boston also had a 2-1 series lead against Washington in the first round. “I’m sure the guys will be fine, we’ve lost in overtime in these playoffs already and we’ve found a good way to bounce back. We are a lot mentally tougher of a team than we have been in the past.”

Washington lost in overtime in Game 1 and Game 6 of the first round, but they bounced back from both those setbacks by winning their subsequent contest. That being said, neither of those two overtime matches lasted nearly as long as Wednesday’s triple-overtime loss.

Blue Jackets’ Wennberg done for night with upper-body injury

Alexander Wennberg, Jay Bouwmeester
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It wouldn’t be a regular season game without a Columbus Blue Jackets injury, right?

OK, the Blue Jackets hope that 2015-16 looks different from the medically challenged mess of last season, but at least one player is banged up tonight.

Alexander Wennberg suffered an upper-body injury and won’t return on Friday, as the team noted.

There’s no word yet regarding how serious the issue might be. It looks like he might have suffered an injury thanks to a Chris Kreider check:

Naturally, the Blue Jackets must hope that this doesn’t begin another trend.

Kings grab goalie insurance by signing Budaj

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 22: Jhonas Enroth #1 and Peter Budaj #31 of the Los Angeles Kings stretch before a game against the Arizona Coyotes at STAPLES Center on September 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NHLI via Getty Images)
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In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.

The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.

At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.

As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.

The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.

All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.