While You Were Away: What’s Gone On In Capitals Nation Since Another Early Exit

Photo: Yahoo! Sports

With the Washington Capitals set to open training camp for the 2022-23 NHL season on Thursday, NoVa Caps goes through what has gone in with the organization for those who have been tuned out from Capitals Nation since last season’s first-round exit.

Injuries

* RW Tom Wilson (torn ACL, underwent surgery on May 25, expected to return in early December)

* C Nicklas Backstrom (hip, underwent resurfacing surgery on June 18, recovery timeline unknown)

* LW Carl Hagelin (eye, underwent surgery on March 3, recovery timeline unknown)

Note: GM Brian MacLellan appeared optimistic about Backstrom returning at some point this season when speaking to the media on July 6.

Draft

20th overall: LW Ivan Miroschnichenko (10-6-16 in 31 VHL games last season)

37th overall: D Ryan Chesley (5-15-20, +20 in 26 games with US National Development Team)

70th overall: LW Alexander Suzdalev (15-36-51 in 45 Swedish Jr. League games)

85th overall: LW Ludwig Persson (25-36-61 in 41 Swedish Jr. League games)

149th overall: C Jake Karabela (12-33-45 in 68 OHL games)

181st overall: C Ryan Hofer (25-33-58 in 67 WHL games)

213th overall: D David Gucciardi (5-6-11, -15 in 36 games with Michigan State University)

Trades

Traded G Vitek Vanecek, 46th overall pick in the 2022 NHL Draft to New Jersey Devils for picks 37 and 70 in 2022  NHL Draft

Acquired RW Connor Brown from Ottawa Senators for 2024 second-round pick

Notes: Brown, 28, scored 10 goals and 39 points in 64 games last season. Brown finished with the most ice time among Senators forwards (20:03) last season, including 2:04 on the power-play (sixth) and 2:38 on the penalty-kill (first). Offseason moves tracker here

Free Agency Signings

G Darcy Kuemper (five years x $5.25 million cap hit)

Notes: The 32-year-old went 37-12-4 (tied for fourth in the NHL in wins), a .921 save percentage (fifth), a 2.54 goals-against average (11th), and five shutouts (tied for fourth) with the Colorado Avalanche in the regular season. During the Avalanche’s run to the Stanley Cup, Kuemper went 10-4 with a .902 save percentage, a 2.57 goals-against average, and one shutout.

C Dylan Strome (one year x $3.5 million cap hit)

Notes: The 25-year-old, who was not tendered a qualifying offer by the Chicago Blackhawks as a restricted free agent, tallied 22 goals, 48 points, and a 52.3% faceoff-winning percentage in 69 games last season.

D Erik Gustafsson (one year x $800,000 cap hit)

Notes: The 30-year-old earned three goals, 18 points, a -4 rating, 50% five-on-five Corsi-for percentage, 47.07% expected goals-for percentage, and 47.71% five-on-five scoring chances-for percentage in 59 games with the Blackhawks last season. He averaged 16:13 per game (eighth among Blackhawks defensemen), including 1:56 on the power play (second).

G Charlie Lindgren (three years x $1.1 million cap hit)

Notes: The 28-year-old went 5-0-0 with a .958 save percentage and 1.22 goals-against average in five NHL games with the St. Louis Blues last season. He also posted a .925 save percentage and a 2.21 goals-against average in 34 games with the AHL’s Springfield Thunderbirds.

RW Marcus Johansson (one year x $1.1 million cap hit)

Notes: The 31-year-old posted nine goals and 29 points in 69 regular-season games with the Seattle Kraken and Capitals, including three goals and six points in 18 games in Washington after getting traded on March 21. He also posted a goal and an assist in the Capitals’ 6-1 win over the Florida Panthers in Game 3 of last season’s first-round Stanley Cup Playoff series.

D Matt Irwin (one year x $750,000 cap hit)

Notes: The 34-year-old, who tallied a goal, four points, an even rating, a career-best 56.01% five-on-five Corsi-for percentage, a career-high 59.32% five-on-five expected goals-for percentage, and a 54.55% five-on-five scoring chances-for percentage (highest since his debut season) in 17 games while averaging 12:39 per game (ninth among Capitals defensemen), including 34 seconds on the penalty kill (seventh).

D Gabriel Carlsson (one year x $750,000 cap hit, two-way)

Notes: The 25-year-old earned two goals, nine points, a 47.99% five-on-five Corsi-for percentage, 47.47% five-on-five expected goals-for percentage, and a 48.99% five-on-five scoring chances-for percentage in 39 NHL games with the Columbus Blue Jackets last season. He also earned two assists in two AHL games. His +6 rating led Columbus blueliners.

C Henrik Borgstrom (one year x $750,000 cap hit, two-way)

Notes: The 24-year-old tallied four goals, seven points, and a 40.2% faceoff-winning percentage in 52 games with the Blackhawks last season.

Who Else Is Gone

* LW Johan Larsson (signed three-year contract in Sweden)

* D Michal Kempny (signed one-year contract with Kraken)

* G Ilya Samsonov (signed one-year contract with Toronto Maple Leafs after Capitals did not tender qualifying offer)

* D Justin Schultz (signed two-year contract with Kraken)

Salary Cap

$10,795,000 available with Backstrom, Wilson, and Hagelin on long-term injured reserve and 13 forwards, seven defensemen, and two goalies under contract. They will need to bring one more player on the opening night roster. $2,878,334 will be free once Wilson and Hagelin are activated.

Training Camp Roster

Graphic: @Capitals

Training Camp Schedule

Photo: CapitalsPR

Preseason Schedule

Opening Night: Wednesday 10/12 vs. Boston Bruins (7 PM ET, TNT)

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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3 Responses to While You Were Away: What’s Gone On In Capitals Nation Since Another Early Exit

  1. Anonymous says:

    A lot of moves made by Caps and MacLellan. Let’s see if it pays off.

  2. DWGie26 says:

    Jon and the NOVA Caps team. A sincere thank you for all the coverage over these summer doldrums days. Been a lot of great content here, and plenty of good activity in the comments section. have thoroughly enjoyed and looking forward to seeing all of the coverage across the season!

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