Hunter expected to turn to Vokoun

Hunter expected to turn to Vokoun
December 7, 2011, 5:47 pm
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When Dale Hunter was hired as Capitals coach on Nov. 28, he told general manager George McPhee he would take the job on the condition he could go full-bore.

Having gone 1-3-0 in his first four games behind the bench all of them one-goal games -- Hunter will make some more lineup changes tonight in Ottawa when the Caps try to beat the Senators for the third time this season.

Hunter is expected to go with Tomas Vokoun in goal after making him a surprise backup to Michal Neuvirth Monday night against the Panthers. The move did not work out well as Neuvirth allowed five goals on 30 shots in a 5-4 loss.

Vokoun has lost his last three starts but allowed just two goals in each of his last two appearances.

Hunter will also shake up three of his forward lines.

Troy Brouwer has been removed from the top line and replaced with Alex Semin, who sat out the last games with what the Caps terms an upper body injury. Semin is expected to start the game with Alex Ovechkin, who has one goal in his last 12 games, and Nicklas Backstrom.

Brouwer is expected to move to the left side on a second line with center Marcus Johansson and right wing Jeff Halpern, whos been promoted from the fourth line.

The meat and potatoes line of Brooks Laich, Jason Chimera and Joel Ward remains intact, with Cody Eakin getting dropped to a fourth line with Matthieu Perreault and Mike Knuble.

Matt Hendricks is sidelined with a lower body injury.

The Caps have gone 5-1-0 against the Sens over the past two seasons and are 15-5-3 against them since 2006. The Senators are coming off Mondays 4-2 win over Tampa and are 3-1-1 in their last five.