One team to keep an eye on at this year’s NHL Draft are the Washington Capitals. The Caps have 11 draft picks to work with and GM George McPhee has a team with a lot of question marks surrounding it heading into next season.
As CSNWashington.com’s Chuck Gormley finds out from McPhee, the Caps are highly intrigued by what’s going on in this year’s draft.
“We like the draft a lot and we like what we think we can get at 11th and 16,” McPhee said. “There seem to be more [top quality] defensemen than forwards. We have a lot of picks this year, so we’ll be making a lot of picks.”
The Caps get to take advantage of their deal that sent Semyon Varlamov to Colorado in exchange for their first-round pick. With two first-round choices to work with, Washington could help their organizational depth a bit. With needs for skilled forwards and tougher defensemen to better their depth, the Capitals could have a lot of quality players to choose from with at those picks.
McPhee will have to make them count as the Caps have seen most of their youth find their way to Washington while at least one hopeful prospect stays in Russia in Evgeni Kuznetsov, something that doesn’t bother McPhee a whole lot.
The Arizona Coyotes have returned Dylan Strome to the Erie Otters of the OHL.
Strome, 18, was the third overall pick in the 2015 NHL draft.
The 6’3, 185 pounder was hoping to stick with the Coyotes this season, but the team decided to take the conservative approach with their top prospect.
Strome will look to build off an incredible junior season that saw him score 45 goals and 129 points in 68 games.
Strome seems to be taking the demotion in stride.
The team also announced that they’ve assigned goaltender Louis Domingue and forward Matthias Plachta to their AHL affiliate in Springfield.
Domingue, 23, had a 1-2-1 record with a 2.73 goals-against-average and a .911 save percentage in seven games last season.
Plachta, a free agent signing, will begin his first pro season in North America. The 24-year-old had 14 goals and 35 points in the German League last season.
The Red Wings have placed Pavel Datsyuk, Darren Helm, Danny DeKeyser and Alexey Marchenko on injured reserve.
Placing these players on I.R. opens up four more roster spots for Detroit.
The Red Wings have suffered an incredibe amount of injuries heading into the season.
Datsyuk (ankle) is expected to be out until November.
DeKeyser (foot) is going to miss three-to-four weeks, while Helm (concussion) and Marchenko (lower-body) are considered day-to-day.
The team also announced that they have reduced their training camp roster to 27 players on Sunday.
Top prospect Dylan Larkin remains in camp for now.
Coach Jeff Blashill told reporters that the 19-year-old has looked good, but a final decision hasn’t been made on where he will play this year.
As for Larkin, he’s just fed up of living in a hotel.
“There’s been so much speculation and so many questions, and no one really knows,” said Larkin. “Maybe the coaches know, but just to find out where I’ll be living or what’s happening — I’m kind of sick of the hotel. It would be nice to know what’s going on.”