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McMichael Appears To Be Healthy Scratch, Vanecek Ill As Capitals Ready For Blues



Capitals forward Connor McMichael

The Washington Capitals saw a couple of roster moves to start their Friday, and now, it looks like they’ll have some interesting combinations as they take on the St. Louis Blues on Friday.

After placing Nicklas Backstrom and T.J. Oshie on the injured reserve and re-assigning Michal Kempny to the taxi squad, the Capitals held their morning skate with some notable changes.

Per The Washington Post‘s Samantha Pell, Vitek Vanecek missed Friday’s morning skate with a non-COVID illness. This leaves Zach Fucale and Ilya Samsonov as the two available to play on Friday.

Meanwhile, Garnet Hathaway is on the top line with Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov. He skated with that trio on Wednesday.

it appeared that Connor McMichael was skating as an extra, and will be a healthy scratch for the first time since October when he was still competing with Hendrix Lapierre for a spot.

READ MORE ON WHN: Backstrom, Oshie Head To IR; Capitals Assign Kempny To Taxi Squad

Per Pell, here were the lines:

Alex Ovechkin-Evgeny Kuznetsov-Garnet Hathaway

Conor Sheary-Lars Eller-Tom Wilson

Carl Hagelin-Nic Dowd-Brett Leason

Daniel Sprong-Mike Sgarbossa-Aliaksei Protas

Martin Fehervary-John Carlson

Dmitry Orlov-Nick Jensen

Trevor van Riemsdyk-Justin Schultz

In 32 games this season, McMichael has four goals and nine points. He has gone without a point in his last three games and has seen his ice time fluctuate. He played just 6:13 minutes on Sunday against New Jersey and has also averaged under 11 minutes over his last nine games.

Aliaksei Protas is also set to return after being sent down to Hershey on Sunday. He re-joined the team on Tuesday. Through 22 games, Protas has two goals and six points.

Washington plays St. Louis on Friday before heading to Minnesota for a tilt with the Wild in the second game of a back-to-back road swing.

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