Capitals winger D.J. King took a calculated risk when his agent asked the Capitals to give him a chance to play somewhere other than Washington.
When he passed through NHL waivers Tuesday without getting claimed, King said he had no problem walking back into the Capitals dressing room and hitting the ice with his teammates.
"I think the reaction from everyone -- management, the coaching staff -- has been great," said King, who has played in just one game this season. "It wasn't a big deal at all. Everyone knows I needed to play hockey to prolong my career."
Capitals defenseman Jeff Schultz said anytime a player is not in the lineup for a long period, teammates understand their need to play.
"He's worked so hard and game days he's always out there do bag skating and doing goalie drills," Schultz said. "You feel for him. When he does play he brings a lot to this team. You don't like seeing anybody work that hard and just sit around. You'd like to see him playing -- if not here then helping another team."
As for when he'll get back in the lineup, King may have to wait until the Caps face a lineup that features a heavyweight enforcer.
"You never hope for injuries, but if they happen and I get a shot, that's a door that opens," King said. "You just never know, I jut have to wrk hard every day in practice and hopefully if that door opens Im ready. Ill work on my skills and hopefully that door opens, if not here then somewhere else."