Capitals Recall Travis Boyd and Vitek Vanecek From Hershey, Assign Ilya Samsonov and Tyler Lewington to Hershey

The Washington Capitals have recalled forward Travis Boyd and goaltender Vitek Vanecek from the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL) and assigned goaltender Ilya Samsonov and defenseman Tyler Lewington to Hershey, senior vice president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced today.

The moves are primarily in order to address lingering injuries to Carl Hagelin and Nic Dowd, to recall Travis Boyd and toaddress the extremely tight salary cap margin the Capitals are dealing with. The move will allow the Capitals to dress 12 forwards and six defensemen for tonight’s game in Boston. The Capitals were only able to dress 11 forwards and seven defensemen in last nights 5-2 loss to Montreal.

The Capitals will save a few bucks by sending Samsonov ($925k) down and recalling Vanecek ($717k) as backup to Holtby for tonight. This is likely temporary or even a “paper”-only move (Samsonov may not report to Hershey), as the Bears called up a replacement for Vanecek yesterday (Parker Milner) in anticipation of today’s moves.

Both Samsonov and Vanecek are waivers-exempt.


Boyd, 26, has recorded four assists in six games with the Capitals this season. The 6’0”, 190-pound forward has recorded 25 points (5g, 20a) in 67 career games with the Capitals. Last season with Washington, the Hopkins, Minn., native’s 1.01 primary assists per 60 minutes of five-on-five play ranked second on the Capitals, behind only Evgeny Kuznetsov (1.15).

Vanecek, 23, is 4-2-1 with Hershey this season with a 2.65 goals against average and a .894 save percentage. Last season with Hershey, the 6’1”, 187-pound goaltender posted a record of 21-10-6 with a 2.62 goals against average and a .907 save percentage in 38 games with the Bears last season. He was named to the 2019 AHL All-Star Classic and was named the CCM/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending Oct. 21, 2018.

Samsonov, 22, is 5-2-1 with the Capitals this season with a 2.65 goals against average and a .912 save percentage. The 6’3”, 208-pound goaltender became the first rookie goaltender in franchise history to win his first five career starts, the 18th goaltender in NHL history to accomplish this feat and the first since Charlie Lindgren of the Montreal Canadiens from April 7, 2016 to Nov. 7, 2017. Last season with Hershey, Samsonov had a record of 20-14-5 with a 2.70 goals against average and a .898 save percentage.

Lewington, 24, has appeared in six games with the Capitals this season one game with Hershey. The 6’2”, 200-pound defenseman recorded 15 points (3g, 12a) in 65 games with Hershey in 2018-19 and logged 121 penalty minutes, which led the team and ranked tied for ninth in the AHL. In 241 career AHL games, Lewington has recorded 49 points (12g, 37a), 501 penalty minutes and has posted a +29 plus/minus rating.

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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6 Responses to Capitals Recall Travis Boyd and Vitek Vanecek From Hershey, Assign Ilya Samsonov and Tyler Lewington to Hershey

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  3. hockeydruid says:

    Cant we just keep Boyd and send Panik either to Hershey or cut him? He seems to be a wast of money, roster space and most important cap space.

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