Capitals Notebook: Orlov & Hathaway Come To Say ‘Emotional’ Goodbye, Latest On Craig Smith
The Washington Capitals said goodbye to Dmitry Orlov and Garnet Hathaway on Friday, the latest on Craig Smith and more from practice.
ARLINGTON, V.A. — Before the Washington Capitals took the ice for practice on Friday, they came together and shared hugs with Dmitry Orlov and Garnet Hathaway, who stopped by MedStar Capitals Iceplex one last time to say goodbye and pick up their gear before heading up to Boston to join the Bruins, who traded for the two yesterday in exchange for Craig Smith and draft picks.
It was a sad moment for the team, who then huddled together at practice to get a pep talk from head coach Peter Laviolette before getting into a busy skate following their sixth straight loss.
"Today was a little bit emotional saying goodbye to some good people, some good teammates and so that's never fun," Lars Eller admitted. "But at the same time, we gotta move on and look ahead and do our job, most of all. Losing sucks, we gotta try to turn it around. We still have a lot of quality here in this room and just take it one day at a time and try to turn things around and have some fun playing hockey."
Orlov had been with the team for 11 seasons and in the organization for a total of 14 years after being taken in the first round of the 2009 NHL Draft. His 686 games played were the fourth-most among defensemen in franchise history. As for Hathaway, he played four seasons in D.C. and was a fundamental part of one of the league's top fourth lines. He was also the team's consistent King Clancy nominee for his work in the community, where he launched "Hath's Heroes" to help local first responders.
"It's sad. Great teammates, good friends, good players. That's hard," Alex Ovechkin, who was particularly close with his countrymate in Orlov, said.
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Meanwhile, it was a tough practice, where the team also had to get to work and focus ahead of Friday's game against the New York Rangers. As for their newest acquisition, Smith is en route to D.C. and is expected to arrive on Friday night. His status remains up in the air for Saturday's bout with the Rangers. On the NHL Media site, Smith is listed as No. 16.
The lines were the same as they were for Thursday's 4-2 loss to the Anaheim Ducks:
Alex Ovechkin-Evgeny Kuznetsov-Tom Wilson
Marcus Johansson-Nicklas Backstrom-Conor Sheary
Sonny Milano-Dylan Strome-T.J. Oshie
Lars Eller-Nic Dowd-Nicolas Aube-Kubel
Erik Gustafsson-Trevor van Riemsdyk
Martin Fehervary-Nick Jensen
Matt Irwin-Dylan McIlrath
Devante Smith-Pelly and The Last Of Us star Keivonn Woodard also attended practice to catch up with the players. DSP will drop the puck for Black History Night at Capital One Arena on Saturday.