Editor's Note: New to the THN writing team this year is John Sparenberg. John previously worked for the Washington Capitals AHL affiliate Hershey Bears, and brings his vast knowledge of the Bears/Caps specifically and hockey in general to the fans at theHogs.net.
John and I also look forward to bringing you a Caps podcast this season, complete with reporting on the team, player and coach interaction and updates on the young guys in the system working their way up to the big team at Verizon.
Without further ado, here is John's first THN submission.
Friday at Kettler Capitals Complex, with approximately 200 fans in the stands, coach Glen Hanlonís Washington Capitals took their first steps of the season that they hope will culminate in a playoff appearance with the opening of training camp.
In the first scrimmage of the camp, it was the White team over the Blue team in a light hitting affair, 4-2.
Kyle Wilson was the number one star of the match with a pair of goals for the good guys in white, including the game winner.
Jeff Schultz and Joe Motzko each tallied for Team White. Both players, like Wilson, are trying to avoid a trip to the farm in Hershey.
Scott Barney, in camp without an NHL contract was an excellent late season pickup by Hershey GM Doug Yingst last season. Barney scored for Team Blue along with Marty Guerin, the Miami University product who is also without an NHL contract.
Tomas Fleischmann, also in camp without a contract had a strong game, with a handful of quality scoring chances and an assist on the Barney goal.
Alexander Ovechkin was relatively quiet on the day, but did victimize defenseman Tyler Sloan with one particular dazzling bit of stickhandling. Iím guessing Tyler has not seen many moves like those in his career.
Frederic Cassivi did not allow a goal in his 25 minutes between the pipes for Team White and his Team Blue counterpart, rookie Michal Neuvirth allowed but one goal in his 25 minutes of crease patrol.
Victor Kozlov, one of the team's heralded off-season free agent acquisitions took an errant Frederic Cassivi clearing attempt in the mouth, drawing blood.