You know we are in a whole new world when a goalie in a Penguins jersey free agent Brent Johnson -- is practicing with a diminishing number of Capitals at their practice facility.
With Caps goalie Michal Neuvirth now a member of Sparta Praha of the Czech League, Johnson joined seven Capitals on the ice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex on Tuesday. The Caps players in attendance were Nicklas Backstrom, Brooks Laich, Jason Chimera, Matt Hendricks, Jay Beagle, Mike Green and John Carlson.
Johnson joined that group after he received an invitation from Laich. Johnsons wife, Erica, is from nearby Burke, Va.
We werent sure if Michal Neuvirth would be back today so I called Johnny last night and were glad to have him come out. I didnt like his jersey, though.
Johnson, 35, played 16 games for the Penguins last season but was not re-signed by the club. He played for the Caps from 2005-09.
With the NHL lockout in its third day, the seven Capitals on the ice represented a drop from the 13 that hit the ice on Monday. In addition to Neuvirth, Swedes Marcus Johansson and Mattias Sjogren and Russians Dmitry Orlov and Sergei Kostenko were among those who were on the ice Monday but not on Tuesday.
Meanwhile the Capitals announced the cancellation of Thursdays rookie game against the Flyers, which would have been held at Kettler.
With no formal talks scheduled between NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA executive director Don Fehr, look for the NHL to begin cancelling preseason games, which are slated to begin Sept. 23.