Season Preview: Washington Capitals depth chart
theScore is previewing each team leading up to the 2016-17 season.
With essentially an entire roster returning after the most successful regular season in franchise history, Brian MacLellan didn't have the need, let alone the wiggle room, to bring widespread change to the Washington Capitals.
But with forward depth being an issue in the postseason, the Capitals are to return in 2016-17 with added support for arguably the most talented top six in the league, and not a single excuse.
Here's how the Capitals stack up with the additions of Lars Eller, acquired from the Montreal Canadiens for two draft picks, as well as free agent Brett Connolly via free agency.
|Alex Ovechkin||Nicklas Backstrom||T.J. Oshie|
|Marcus Johansson||Evgeny Kuznetsov||Justin Williams|
|Andre Burakovsky||Lars Eller||Daniel Winnik|
|Brett Connolly||Jay Beagle||Tom Wilson|
- What you see is really what you get. Burakovsky is the only forward listed on a two-way contract. The club has done a tremendous job fitting in all the pieces, while still leaving a little bit of cap space, but will enter the season as advertised barring an injury.
|Karl Alzner||John Carlson|
|Dmitry Orlov*||Matt Niskanen|
|Brooks Orpik||Nate Schmidt|
* denotes unsigned
- Orpik is the biggest question mark on this team, both for performance and health reasons. The veteran defender missed 41 games (and the Caps were granted relief on his $5.5-million salary) as he dealt with a mysterious injury in the middle of last season.
- Holtby is the clear No. 1 starter after delivering a Vezina Trophy season in the first year of his five-year, $30.5-million extension. Grubauer is a restricted free agent at season's end.