July 25, 2014

Washington Capitals place D Tomas Kundratek on waivers

The Washington Capitals reportedly placed right-handed defenseman Tomas Kundratek on waivers Wednesday, with the plans to send him to Hershey if he clears waivers. The rest of the league has until Thursday at noon to make a claim.

Kundratek’s removal from the roster removes his $550,000 salary cap hit, giving the Caps a little more room under the cap with which to maneuver.

The move could be a pre-cursor to the team keeping Tom Wilson, the 19-year-old winger that has made a terrific impression in camp. He is not eligible to play in the AHL this season, so if he doesn’t make the Caps, he’d have to be returned to his junior team. Coach Adam Oates has made several comments that he’d like to have Wilson’s size and presence on the fourth line this season and that he’s already outgrown major Juniors, calling him a man among boys at that level.

The Caps top two defense pairing seem set, with veterans Karl Alzner and Mike Green as the top pair and John Erskine and John Carlson the second duo. The Caps then have several candidates to fill the bottom pair.

Jack Hillen and Steve Oleksy finished last season as that third pairing, but Kundratek’s overall game seemed to be a good fit to stick around as the seventh defenseman or eventually step in for Oleksy.

Then there’s Dmitry Orlov, who at one time seemed destined for top-four minutes. A series of injuries, including a concussion that saw him miss over three months last season, derailed those plans.

In Adam Oates’ pregame comments before the team takes on Nashville Wednesday night at Verizon Center, he said that Kundratek is “a good hockey player. If he gets picked up [on waivers], I hope he does well. If he doesn’t, I hope we see him again.”

PHOTOS: Washington Capitals Practice, March 28

Dave and I are back in DC for a visit so we went over to Kettler Iceplex on Thursday, March 28 to watch the Washington Capitals practice. The last time we saw the Caps on the ice in person was in September before the lockout. We’re looking forward to seeing a few games at Verizon Center in the next couple of weeks!

There was a scary moment when Alex Ovechkin left the ice after catching a puck with his chin. He didn’t return to practice and tweeted photos from the doctor’s office before and after the 22 stitches. Ouch.

Here are a handful of photos from practice. It was great to take hockey photos again! As always, please feel free to comment on the post. I really appreciate feedback. Thanks.

This is what hockey fans do on their spring break! - Washington Capitals practice at Kettler, 3/28/2013 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

This is what hockey fans do on their spring break! – Washington Capitals practice at Kettler, 3/28/2013 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

 

[Read more...]

Photo Gallery: Washington Capitals present Hockey ‘n’ Heels 2013

Thanks to DSP fan contributors Katie Lucas and Manda Kowalczyk, please enjoy the following photo gallery of this year’s Hockey ‘n’ Heels event the Washington Capitals hosted at Kettler Capitals Iceplex.

calle jo

Caps assistant coach Calle Johansson (a defenseman) gave faceoff tips. (photo courtesy K. Lucas)

crabb and hunter

Joey Crabb and assistant coach Tim Hunter gave lessons in shooting the puck. (photo courtesy K. Lucas)

crabb

Gratutitous shot of Joey Crabb. (photo courtesy K. Lucas)

kundra and katie

Rookie Tomas Kundratek shows Katie how to pass on the backhand. (photo courtesy K. Lucas)

kundra

Tomas Kundratek, presented without comment. (photo courtesy K. Lucas)

locker

The eloquent Craig Laughlin, telling a surely riviting story. (photo courtesy K. Lucas)

wolski

Wolski showing a guest the finer points of a wrist shot. (photo courtesy K. Lucas)

manda-locker

That Locker sure is the excitable one, eh? (photo courtesy M. Kowalczyk)

manda-beagle

Jay Beagle, getting ready to pose for pictures. (photo courtesy M. Kowalcyzk)

manda-crabb

Okay, here’s another one of Crabb. (photo courtesy M. Kowalczyk)

manda-ladies in the locker

The group got a locker room tour. (photo courtesy M. Kowalczyk)

manda-hugs

Manda and friend pose with Kundratek. (photo courtesy M. Kowalczyk)

CAPS: Washington Capitals Players and Better Halves Visit Children’s National Medical Center

Washington Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom (19) and defenseman Jeff Schultz (55) work on arts and crafts with patients at Children’s National Medical Center during a Feb. 15 visit. Capitals players have made a tradition of visiting Children’s National Medical Center each season since 1984. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom (19) and defenseman Jeff Schultz (55) work on arts and crafts with patients at Children’s National Medical Center during a Feb. 15 visit. Capitals players have made a tradition of visiting Children’s National Medical Center each season since 1984. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals defenseman Tom Poti works on an arts and crafts project with a child at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. during a Feb. 15 visit. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals defenseman Tom Poti works on an arts and crafts project with a child at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. during a Feb. 15 visit. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Following an afternoon of arts and crafts, Washington Capitals players and their better halves take a group photograph with patients at Children’s National Medical Center. Back row (l-r): Jessica and Tom Poti, Michal Neuvirth and Monika Hybnerova, Ashley and Jay Beagle, Tomas Kundratek and Alannah Dzerdz, Nicklas Backstrom and Liza Berg, Mackenzie Schultz. Front row (l-r): Donna Oates, Jeff Schultz. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Following an afternoon of arts and crafts, Washington Capitals players and their better halves take a group photograph with patients at Children’s National Medical Center. Back row (l-r): Jessica and Tom Poti, Michal Neuvirth and Monika Hybnerova, Ashley and Jay Beagle, Tomas Kundratek and Alannah Dzerdz, Nicklas Backstrom and Liza Berg, Mackenzie Schultz. Front row (l-r): Donna Oates, Jeff Schultz. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

 

ARLINGTON, Va. – During the past two years, 10-year-old Ellie Schleyer has been visiting Children’s National Medical Center for an undiagnosed brain disorder.

In between bloodwork and tests on Feb. 15, she discovered several Washington Capitals players and their better halves at the hospital for an afternoon of arts and crafts.

In the hospital’s atrium Ellie joined several other children along with Nicklas Backstrom and Liza Berg, Jay and Ashley Beagle, Tomas Kundratek and Alannah Dzerdz, Michal Neuvirth and Monika Hybnerova, Donna Oates, wife of head coach Adam Oates, Tom and Jessica Poti and Jeff and Mackenzie Schultz.

“To see the kids get so excited when the guys come is just priceless,” said Mackenzie Schultz. “A lot of kids are here fighting through things that we can’t even imagine at such a young age. Just to put a smile on their face and make one day a little better is so important.”

Ellie’s father, David Schleyer, said the visit had a positive effect on Ellie, who made each player she worked with a piece of art.

“For her, it’s an opportunity to express something other than sadness,” he said. “To see the players giving her time and admiring her artwork says a lot about their character.”

The Capitals have made a tradition of visiting Children’s National Medical Center each season since 1984.

“It’s definitely hard for the children to be in the hospital, so we’re happy to be with them and play games and make them happy,” said Kundratek. “It’s pretty awesome to be here and spend some time with them.”

Located in Washington, D.C., Children’s National Medical Center is the only exclusive provider of pediatric care in the metropolitan Washington area and is the only freestanding children’s hospital between Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Norfolk and Atlanta. Serving the nation’s children for more than 140 years, Children’s National is a proven leader in the development and application of innovative new treatments for childhood illness and injury.

CAPS: Chimera, Holtby and Kundratek with Dreams for Kids

Washington Capitals forward Jason Chimera poses with participants during a Dreams for Kids Extreme Recess clinic at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Feb. 8. Attended by 100 children, the event was held in conjunction with the Capitals celebration of Hockey is for Everyone™ Month, a league wide initiative that offers children of all backgrounds opportunities to play hockey. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals forward Jason Chimera poses with participants during a Dreams for Kids Extreme Recess clinic at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Feb. 8. Attended by 100 children, the event was held in conjunction with the Capitals celebration of Hockey is for Everyone™ Month, a league wide initiative that offers children of all backgrounds opportunities to play hockey. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals defenseman Tomas Kundratek instructs a child on skating during a Dreams for Kids Extreme Recess clinic at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Feb. 8. The session marked the third-consecutive year the Capitals have teamed up with Dreams For Kids for Extreme Recess. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals defenseman Tomas Kundratek instructs a child on skating during a Dreams for Kids Extreme Recess clinic at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Feb. 8. The session marked the third-consecutive year the Capitals have teamed up with Dreams For Kids for Extreme Recess. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby pushes the sled of a child trying out sled hockey during a Dreams for Kids Extreme Recess clinic at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Feb. 8. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby pushes the sled of a child trying out sled hockey during a Dreams for Kids Extreme Recess clinic at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Feb. 8. (Photo Courtesy of Washington Capitals)

Washington Capitals Host Dreams for Kids for Extreme Recess Hockey

ARLINGTON, Va. – For the third-consecutive year the Washington Capitals teamed up with children’s charity Dreams for Kids (DFK) to host an Extreme Recess Hockey clinic at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Friday, Feb. 8.

Capitals forward Jason Chimera, goaltender Braden Holtby, defenseman Tomas Kundratek and mascot Slapshot skated and played hockey with 100 children with physical and developmental disabilities. Prior to the free session, participants watched the Capitals practice.
The free clinic gave many of the children the opportunity to skate and play hockey for the first time. Chimera, Holtby and Kundratek spent the clinic offering children instruction on how to skate. They also helped push the sleds of children trying out sled hockey.

“Being able to skate with the children and teach them about hockey today was amazing,” said Kundratek. “I hope they enjoyed the experience and will continue to play the spot.”

Dreams for Kids is an international youth organization and 501(c) (3) children’s charity whose mission is to empower young people of all abilities through dynamic leadership programs and life-changing activities.

Their Extreme Recess clinics pair each child with a volunteer so every child is engaged effectively.

The event was held in conjunction with the Capitals celebration of Hockey is for Everyone™ Month, a league wide initiative that offers children of all backgrounds opportunities to play hockey and leverages the sport of hockey as a catalyst to teach essential life skills and the core values of hockey: commitment, perseverance and teamwork.

Washington Capitals Practice Update & Audio for Jan. 21: Oates, Ovechkin, Kundratek

[Audio courtesy @SkyKerstein]

Tomas Kundratek makes his NHL Debut Jan. 11 (Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

Tomas Kundratek makes his NHL Debut Jan. 11 (Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

The Washington Capitals recalled D Tomas Kundratek from AHL Hershey today in light of Jack Hillen injuring his right shoulder after a collision with Tampa Bay forward Vincent LeCavalier sent Hillen into the endboards awkwardly in Saturday night’s 6-3 loss to the Lightning. Kundratek spoke with the media after practice about his recall and second stint with the big club.

About that five game stint last year, Kundratek said, “It was great. A lot of experience. I know what I have to do right now.”

Click below to hear the rest of his interview, plus Adam Oates, Alex Ovechkin, Braden Holtby, Karl Alzner and Troy Brouwer.

01-21-13 Tomas Kundratek Practice RAW

01-21-13 Adam Oates Practice RAW

01-21-13 Alex Ovechkin Practice RAW

01-21-13 Braden Holtby Practice RAW

01-21-13 Karl Alzner Practice RAW

01-21-13 Troy Brouwer Practice RAW

 

Washington Capitals Assign 21 Players to Hershey Bears

Capitals Assign 21 Players to Hershey

ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have assigned 21 players to the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League and loaned forward Tom Wilson to Plymouth of the Ontario Hockey League, vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.

The players assigned to Hershey, Washington’s AHL affiliate, include forwards Mike Carman, Stanislav Galiev, Garrett Mitchell, Danick Paquette, Mattias Sjogren, Matt Clackson, Zach Hamill, Ryan Potulny and Ryan Stoa; defensemen Brett Flemming, Tomas Kundratek, Dmitry Orlov, Cameron Schilling, Dustin Stevenson, Kevin Marshall, Patrick McNeill and Garrett Stafford; and goaltenders Brandon Anderson, Philipp Grubauer, Braden Holtby and Dany Sabourin.

In addition, Washington has loaned Wilson to Plymouth (OHL).

The 11-time Calder Cup champion Hershey Bears will celebrate their 75th AHL season in 2012-13, and are scheduled to open training camp on Sept. 30.

Braden Holtby stretching during warmups at Verizon Center, May 2 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Mattias Sjogren – Captials practice at Kettler, September 14, 2012 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

 

 

GAME 41 PHOTOS: Caps Win, Kundratek Makes NHL Debut

Here are a few photographs from pre-game warmups and Pittsburgh Penguins v. Washington Capitals game on Jan. 11 at Verizon Center. Caps won 1-0 (Game 41 Re-Cap).

Tomas Kundratek made his NHL deubt, Brooks Laich was a little feisty wearing the “A” and Matt Hendricks got the fans fired up early in the game by dropping his gloves.

All photos taken by Cheryl Nichols (@cnichols14) from the stands. [Read more...]

GAME 41 RE-CAP: Long homestand starts with win over depleted Pens

Alzner, Hendricks and Carlson were first to congratulate Vokoun (Photo by Cheryl Nichols)

The game was missing some of its biggest stars.  The play on the ice for much of the night was ragged.  The two best players on the ice were the two goalies.  Still, two points were on the line between a Washington Capitals team that has struggled all season to find an identity and a Pittsburgh Penguins team that is wounded to its very core.  After a lackluster and sloppy 55 minutes that featured more turnovers and missed entry passes than highlights — for either team, the homestanding Caps held on at the end for a 1-0 win, leapfrogging their arch-rivals to gain eighth place in the Eastern Conference. [Read more...]

Caps Morning Skate: Backstrom to injured list; Kundratek in lineup

The Washington Capitals placed center Nick Backstrom on the injured list, retroactive to last Tuesday, with concussion-related symptoms.  He can be activated at any time.  Backstrom has been out since sustaining an elbow to the head from Calgary forward Rene Bourque, who received a five-game suspension for his actions.  Backstrom leads the Caps in scoring this season with 13 goals and 29 assists, for 42 points.

Backstrom and Mike Green (groin) did not participate in today’s skate. 

The Caps recalled defenseman Tomas Kundratek (6’2″, 200) from AHL Hershey, and will be in tonight’s lineup, sending healthy veteran d-man Jeff Schultz and John Erskine to the bench.  Kundratek, a 21-year old Czech native, recorded eight points (six goals, two assists) and 14 penalty minutes in 21 games for Hershey this season.  He was acquired from the New York Rangers  for Francois Bouchard in a Nov. 8 trade.  Kundratek, who will wear No. 36, will be paired with fellow countryman Roman Hamrlik in his NHL debut.

Tomas Vokoun was the first goalie off the ice after today’s morning skate, indicating he will probably start tonight against the Pittsburgh Penguins. 

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