Demotion in practice snaps Semin’s slump


Since being dropped to the fourth line during Friday’s practice, Alex Semin has snapped out of his five-game pointless slump with a goal and two assists in two contests.

“I was just mixing up lines,” Capitals coach Dale Hunter said. “Sometimes you get stale and need to practice with different people.”

Semin has been a disappointment this season with 18 goals and 44 points in 65 games, but those numbers mask the fact that he has turned his season around since the middle of December. He has 33 points in his last 38 games.

He’s scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this summer and how he performs over the next few weeks could go a long way towards determining what kind of contract he’ll get. Personally, I have a hard time believing that he’ll end up with an annual salary near the $6.7 million he’s making this season, but you can never discount the possibility that a desperate team will be open to throwing a ton of money at a talented, but risky player.