News and notes as the Capitals’ new coaching staff starts trickling back into the Arlington area to begin preparing for the 2014-15 season:
Fourth line punch: The Capitals are interested in adding some punch to their fourth line and reportedly have contacted the agent for heavy-handed free agent left wing Paul Bissonnette.
At 6-foot-4, 216 pounds, Bissonnette would give the Capitals a true heavyweight and allow 20-year-old right wing Tom Wilson [14 fighting majors] to concentrate on becoming the power forward the Caps believe he can be.
From a financial standpoint, the Caps can fit Bissonnette under the cap. They have a $1.1 million cushion and, considering he’s been on the market for more than a month, Bissonnette would probably settle for somewhere close to the $737,500.
In 39 games for the Phoenix Coyotes last season Bissonnette recorded two goals, six assists and 53 penalty minutes, dropping the gloves just three times.
Known for colorful tweets that have attracted more than 554,000 followers -- including one tweet that led to him disabling his Twitter account and taking on a new one – Bissonnette tweeted on Wednesday that he was “Talking with some teams. Hope it works out.”
If the Caps are looking at having more of an edge next season they might also have interest in former Rangers irritant Dan Carcillo, who picked up 4 goals, one assist and six fighting majors in 57 games with the Kings and Rangers.
Listed at 5-11, 202, Carcillo is a different player than Bissonnette, agitating opposing teams with the intent of drawing penalties. He made $850,000 last season.
Sharing Stingrays: After ending a two-year agreement with the ECHL Reading Royals, the Capitals have reunited with the Carolina Stingrays as an NHL affiliate. But they’ll need to share them with the Boston Bruins.
According to a report in the Harrisburg Patriot News, the Stingrays will share players with the Bruins, Hershey Bears and Capitals.
Bears coach Troy Mann told the newspaper he has spoken with Stingrays head coach and director of hockey operations Spencer Carbery about a handful of players who could begin the season in South Carolina.
“He didn't tell me how many players are going to be sent down from the Bruins,” Mann said. “It should be interesting."
Mann also said he’s been studying tapes of a few Nashville Predators games from last season to familiarize himself with the style of hockey Barry Trotz likes to play.
Mann will be back on the ice on Sept. 11 when the Capitals’ rookies open camp.
Settling for less? While much has been written [and re-written] about the lucrative contracts the Capitals gave Matt Niskanen [seven years, $40.25 million] and Brooks Orpik [five years, $27.5 million] on July 1, they weren’t the only team willing to open their wallets for the two former Penguins.
According to Pittsburgh columnist Dejan Kovacevic [stick tap to Japers’ Rink], Niskanen was offered more money to play for the Red Wings and Orpik could have made more as a member of the Colorado Avalanche.
Kovacevic said Caps assistant coach Todd Reirden, formerly of the Penguins, was a big reason the Caps landed both blue liners.
Niskanen’s contract was the richest of the summer up until this weekend, when the Montreal Canadiens and defenseman P.K. Subban agreed on an eight-year deal worth a reported $72 million.
Subban’s $9 million cap hit is the highest among NHL defensemen and ranks third in the NHL behind Alex Ovechkin [$9.538 million] and Evgeni Malkin $9.5 million].
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