One night after opening their seven-game pre-season slate with a 2-0 loss to Nashville in the 2011 Baltimore Hockey Classic, the Caps hit the road for a visit to Columbus and a Wednesday night date with the Blue Jackets. The game is Washington’s third in four night’s in three different cities.
Among the players headed to Columbus for Wednesday’s game are Chris Bourque and Jay Beagle, a pair of players who played in Tuesday night’s tilt in Baltimore. They’re the only players slated to suit up for back-to-back games; and both forwards are among a group of eight who are vying for as many as three available roster openings up front.
Mattias Sjogren, Mathieu Perreault and Christian Hanson are also in that fight for the final few forward positions, and they’ll each be in the lineup on Wednesday against the Blue Jackets as well. For the 23-year-old Sjogren, tonight marks his NHL pre-season debut. He is slated to center a line with former Blue Jacket Jason Chimera on the left and off-season free agent addition Jacob Micflikier on the right.
Defenseman Dmitry Orlov also gets into the action tonight, playing in his first NHL pre-season game against the Jackets.
The Blue Jackets made news early on Wednesday when they announced that they had signed forward R.J. Umberger to a five-year contract extension worth a total of $23 million. Umberger played his collegiate hockey at Ohio State.
Columbus split a pair of split-squad games with Winnipeg on Tuesday in its first pre-season contests. The Jackets won the home game by a 5-1 count and dropped the road tilt by a 6-1 score.
Among the noteworthy Jackets expected to play tonight are Umberger, Jeff Carter, Rick Nash and Steve Mason. Former Caps farmhands Andrew Joudrey and Alexandre Giroux are also expected to play as is former Caps draft choice Theo Ruth.