Capitals Recall Hunter Shepard, Loan Clay Stevenson To Hershey Bears

The Washington Capitals have recalled goaltender Hunter Shepard from the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL) and have loaned goaltender Clay Stevenson to Hershey, president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced today.

Charlie Lindgren, who was injured last week, was on the ice early on Sunday for some individual skills work, but did not take part in the full practice.

Shepard had been out due to illness for Hershey, but returned to games this past weekend. He will get the nod against the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday.


Shepard, 27, has posted a record of 2-0-0 with a 2.88 goals-against average and a .885 save percentage in two games with Hershey this season. The 6’0”, 219-pound goaltender made his season debut on Oct. 20 at Providence and backed the Bears to a 5-4 shootout win on Oct. 21.

Shepard appeared in 33 games with Hershey last season, posting a record of 20-8-5 with a 2.18 goals-against average, a .916 save percentage and one shutout. The Cohasset, Minnesota native ranked second among AHL goaltenders in goals-against average and tied for sixth in save percentage. Shepard was named the AHL Goaltender of the Month in Nov. 2022 after registering a 6-0-0 record with a 1.63 goals-against average and a .936 save percentage. Shepard, who started all 20 Calder Cup Playoff games for the Bears, posted a 14-6 record with a 2.27 goals-against average, a .914 save percentage and three shutouts. The 6’0″, 222-pound goaltender won the Jack A. Butterfield Trophy, awarded to the MVP of the Calder Cup Playoffs. In 47 career AHL games with Hershey, Shepard has a record of 30-11-5-3 with a 2.11 goals-against average, a .920 save percentage and three shutouts.

Stevenson, 24, has started two games with Hershey this season, posting a record of 1-1-0 with a 2.01 goals-against average and a .900 save percentage.

The 6’4”, 185-pound goaltender appeared in 36 games for the South Carolina Stingrays (ECHL) last season, posting a record of 19-12-3-1 with a 2.54 goals-against average, a .916 save percentage and three shutouts. Stevenson ranked second among ECHL goaltenders in goals-against average, tied for fifth in shutouts and seventh in save percentage. In addition, Stevenson posted a 2-1-2 record with a 2.11 goals-against average and a .926 save percentage in five Kelly Cup Playoff games.

The Drayton Valley, Alberta native also posted a 3-0-0 record with a 1.96 goals-against average and a .924 save percentage in three games with Hershey in 2022-23. Stevenson made his AHL debut on Dec. 10, 2022, against the Cleveland Monsters, stopping 25 of 27 shots.


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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9 Responses to Capitals Recall Hunter Shepard, Loan Clay Stevenson To Hershey Bears

  1. Bob says:

    Now send Darcy packing

    • Anonymous says:

      I have no problem with that however more might be gotten for him in Dec or Jan. Would be a great move however one that you will not see the tool of a GM make because it would be the right move and the tool of an owner is under the misconception that this is still a playoff team! Rather that do this
      silly “retool” lets start the rebuild. Could have started it in June by buying out both Mantha and Baxkstrom. Do not understand the need to delay just to go after a record when they are not and will not be a playoff team for many a year to come and the longer they delay the more bad hockey is going to be played in this town by old, slow players!

      • DWGie26 says:

        I assume this is the same Annon who has said this multiple times. The buyout rules don’t favor buying out either of those contracts. Those would have been bad business decisions, and make no mistake about it, The Capitals (and the Bears) are businesses. Particularly Backstrom who would have left us with significant dead cap money on the books for 4 years. Mantha is really only playing because Dowd is hurt. Yes, he is an expensive 13th forward, but we still need a 13th forward. Talent wise he is better than Snively, NAK, and others sitting in Hershey. Frank needs to prove himself over a season and win a spot. Lappierre needs another year of growth. Miro needs growth and so does Cristall.

        I don’t expect you to fully understand the business, politics, and culture aspects of the game. But there is a reason why very few players get bought out.

        • Anonymous says:

          Talent on paper is nice however if it does not translate into positive actions on the ice then it is not only wasted but really not there! How many players are as they say “Flash in the pans”? That is Mantha in a nutshell. I do agree with you that the players you mentioned in Frank, Lappierre, Miro and Cristall all need more time in Hershey. Only time will tell if they are flashes or legit NHL’ers. As for Snively NAK and others they are just spare parts like so many others and some on the current roster.

          I do realize that any and all sports are 1st and foremost a business. However please explain to me why you say dead money for 4 years as this is Manthans last year here and Backstrom only has 1 more year? Even if spread out over 4 years still not a bad deal for a team that has to rebuild, especially if they are not going to do anything until after the 25/26 season which would be Ovies last. Wouldforce ownership and management to look at younger players for several years to fill slots. Also anything that would put this team in a position to receive high draft picks, hoping that management retains said picks, is a good thing to assist the rebuild, which should start after the 25/26 season. So if we age going to have to watch this team for the next several years struggle; personally I would rather watch them struggle with young guys they have drafted rather than older players who are ready to retire or more dumpster dive players.

          • DWGie26 says:

            The 4 years on Backstrom is formulated this way. Buyouts go for twice the length of outstanding term. If we bought Backstrom out in summer he would have had two years left. So 4 year dead money. Not sure the exact formula but of that 18.4M outstanding it would probably be like 12M of dead money spread across those 4 years. Mantha would have been two years and probably 3.5 to 4M.

            On the OV and picks piece. There is culture and politics at play which is true from youth hockey to NHL. That is a commitment to one of the greatest players ever in the NHL. Backstrom is part of those politics.

            I suspect the way that Ted/GMBM is looking at this in that is they have some contracts that need to run out because they can’t be moved. They are pushing prospects to be ready. That is why Miro came over early. Sudz to pro game. We have prospects developing well who will be NHL ready as OV and others exists. Fill holes with a lot of youth but also have a lot of cap space for free agents or trades. I think our floor of suck will be much lower and shorter than many other teams. But we will see.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Give Shep daddy a game!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Nothing like having the bears suffer as well. Keep it up caps, youre trash

    • novafyre says:

      Having watched Clay last year in North Charleston and his two Bears games this year I don’t think the swap is making the Bears suffer. On the contrary I think it helps both teams and both players.

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